Deshutes River trip info - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 03-27-2018   #1
 
Coos Bay, 97420
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Deshutes River trip info

Doing a multi day trip down the Deschutes this summer. Beginner/novice rafter but first time down the Deschutes and taking kids. Just doing research, any input you have would be appreciated. 3 day slow pace trip, put-in, take out? Hazards? best/worst?

Thanks!

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Old 03-27-2018   #2
 
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Seattle, Washington
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Which section? If the upper, have a care at Whitehorse. We usually walked the young ones round it.

Bring your own shade.
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Old 03-27-2018   #3
Shapp
 
the grove, Oregon
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Originally Posted by Bradd B View Post
Doing a multi day trip down the Deschutes this summer. Beginner/novice rafter but first time down the Deschutes and taking kids. Just doing research, any input you have would be appreciated. 3 day slow pace trip, put-in, take out? Hazards? best/worst?

Thanks!
Well you are kind of in a tough spot if you are a novice and taking kids cause most of the Deschutes has several Class III rapids. If you are saying you are a beginner and intend to row the kids down the river and there isn't any other more experienced folks along on the trip, I would advise that you re-think that idea or:

There is a short 10 mile stretch with easy water, but mostly roadless from Warm Springs to Trout Creek. You might try that and layover 2 nights at a good camp about 1/2 way. Or you could do 1 overnight from Warm Springs to Trout then do a guided 1/2 day trip in the Maupin area to get some education on running rapids. You need permits, don't camp on the reservation side of the river, watch out for the numerous rattlers, you won't be able to have a campfire and follow the rules all the rules, such as removal of human waste, etc. and as Brian stated, bring your own shade and lots of sunscreen, Good luck.
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Old 03-27-2018   #4
 
Seattle, Washington
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The few class IIIs on the upper will put you kids in unnecessary danger if you are new. With young kids in the mix I would reconsider. I would explore the Grande Ronde- low key, kid/beginner freindly, more wild/scenic, lovely slow pace 3 day nearby to the deschutes. I could go on... I think it has the edge on the deschutes with less people and less camp sharing (aside from Memorial Day which is a zoo). With this years snowpack it will prolly be too low by 4th of July, however.

Still, this is moving water with some room for error. You do have to know how to row with some degree of skill. This is many people’s first multi day for a reason.

Lots of info out there to plan, look into it.
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Old 03-27-2018   #5
Shapp
 
the grove, Oregon
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Originally Posted by Hans n Franz View Post
The few class IIIs on the upper will put you kids in unnecessary danger if you are new. With young kids in the mix I would reconsider. I would explore the Grande Ronde- low key, kid/beginner freindly, more wild/scenic, lovely slow pace 3 day nearby to the deschutes. I could go on... I think it has the edge on the deschutes with less people and less camp sharing (aside from Memorial Day which is a zoo). With this years snowpack it will prolly be too low by 4th of July, however.

Still, this is moving water with some room for error. You do have to know how to row with some degree of skill. This is many people’s first multi day for a reason.

Lots of info out there to plan, look into it.
Close in the sense that the takeout is 6 hours away from Mapuin in the wrong direction from Coos Bay, or in other words, twice as far on the way home to Coos Bay.

I would suggest that floating the Grande Ronde for a novice for their first river multi day with kids without any other experienced group members in attendance, is a bad idea, compared to floating Warm Springs to Trout Creek. Now if you had some other folks with more experience going along, then yes, hit the Wallowa/GR.
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Old 03-27-2018   #6
 
salem, Arizona
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Another super mild multicast in the area of the deschutes is the john day. Service creek to Clarno is all class two. Great relaxing float. Just another idea. I don't know much about the Deschutes.
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Old 03-27-2018   #7
 
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Portland, Oregon
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You may want to consider the John Day from Thirtymile Canyon to Cottonwood. This section is ≈40 miles of class II. This was among the first few trips we took our kids on when they were almost 4 and almost 6. The smallmouth bass fishing is great fun for kids of all ages. The primary risks are strong upstream winds in the afternoon, rattlesnakes and insufficient beverage supplies.
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Old 03-28-2018   #8
Shapp
 
the grove, Oregon
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Originally Posted by Bigwaterforeveryone View Post
You may want to consider the John Day from Thirtymile Canyon to Cottonwood. This section is ≈40 miles of class II. This was among the first few trips we took our kids on when they were almost 4 and almost 6. The smallmouth bass fishing is great fun for kids of all ages. The primary risks are strong upstream winds in the afternoon, rattlesnakes and insufficient beverage supplies.
The John Day ideas are good ones, but I didn't recommend those because the OP indicated he was going to do a "summer" trip. Summer starts June 21. This year the snow pack is not too good, sitting around 67% of average right now.
https://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov/ftpref...mal_update.pdf

https://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov/ftpref...hn%20day18.gif

In an average year flows drop out quickly the end of June.
https://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/dvst...selection_list
This year the flows will drop out sometime before this, probably something along the lines of the 75 percent exceedence (25 percentile) flows:
https://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/dvst...selection_list

So the bottom line, if you choose the John Day route, you will need to be there as early in June as you can make it happen, but of course, everyone else knows this and will also be there to join you. Also early June is technical a "spring" trip. Good luck.
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Old 03-28-2018   #9
 
Belgrade, Montana
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If you want a more remote wilderness run I would check out the Metolius. If I recall correctly there is enough "whitewater" to keep it from being a total float but the scenery and remoteness are a plus one. If I remember correctly there is campin at the put-in, along the way as well as the take-out. We did it in kayaks one year and another year we R2'd it in a 10' bucket boat with no issues. I think the crux of the run is the shuttle.
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Old 03-28-2018   #10
 
Louisville, Colorado
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We did with our kids when they were two and six. We stayed at Imperial River Company in Maupin and the guides gave us the low-down on the rapids, and the folks at the cafe across the bridge ran our shuttles. I don't know what size boat you have? we did it in big cat. I would not do it as the first trip of the year, if you are a novice; like the other folks said there's some setting up, squaring up and pushing to do here and there, at least on the sections around Maupin.

Youtube the rapids, they are all on there.
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