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Old 09-02-2014   #1
White Salmon, Washington
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 6
Hells Canyon - Early Oct??

I have not made it to Hells Canyon yet and have the time the beginning of October. I realize the flows are low but the weather should be quite nice. Are the jet boats going to be super annoying and frequent this time of year? Any experiences for Hells Canyon in the fall are appreciated. Thanks in advance.

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Old 09-02-2014   #2
Meridian, Idaho
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 109
There will definitely be jet boats and the weather can vary quite a bit in the spring and fall down there. Its not uncommon to get rained on. The flows are usually about 9000 to 10000 in the fall but can also vary quite a bit too. I really like the canyon most any time but the fall is my favorite, some fair weather boaters prefer the super hot summer, big water folks like the spring. In the fall the flows are usually just right for fishing, the rapids are pretty easy, in comparison to spring and summer flows anyway. At about 30000 things get pretty exciting for a few seconds in Granite, Wild Sheep gets a little hairier as the flows drop, and its not so miserably hot.

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Old 09-02-2014   #3
Eagle, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 138
looking at the historical flows, there is usually a spike (last several years anyway) during the last 2 weeks of September and the first two weeks of October. Average flows go from approx. 9000 cfs up to 15000 cfs. That being said, power demand is down, so there is less variation during the day.
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Old 09-02-2014   #4
geobucket's Avatar
Missoula, Montana
Paddling Since: 1981
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 48
I have only made it there as late as late Sept. But I think flows, weather, and fishing should generally be pretty good until Nov., according to some friends with a place below Cache Bar. Starting to feel like an early autumn is already happening. In my experience, the big commercial jets will only be there on weekends by that time of year, with a few privates and guided C&B'ers. Might think about it myself, if the Ronde doesn't get some rain.
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Old 09-03-2014   #5
White Salmon, Washington
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 6
Thanks for the replies. Now for the next question: What are some of your favorite hikes / camps in Hells Canyon. We will probably take our time and take out in Pittsburg.
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Old 09-03-2014   #6
Meridian, Idaho
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 109
There are lots of good camps, I havent spent much time on the Oregon side. Kirkwood ranch is worth checking out. If you have the time, hike the whole thing, my first Hells trip was hiking from Pittsburg Landing all the way to the dam and floating back down. Get the Whitis RiverMapmap, it is accurate and and covers the lower Salmon as well.
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Old 09-07-2014   #7
loveland, Colorado
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 317
Hells canyon

Looking to paddle day run to Pittsburg landing or overnight if raft support available, CO kayaker here looking about Sept 15-16 time frame.
Rich 970-six72-6846

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