Owyhee access roads - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 03-12-2019   #1
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
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Owyhee access roads

We are looking to do the Lower Owyhee in May from Rome to Birch creek. From what I remember the road down to the put in is fine and the road out of Birch is more rugged. I also understand every year it can be different...
Will we need 4 wheel drive to get in and out? Could I make it with a 2 wheel drive sprinter?
Any insight would be great- from past years of once folks get in and see the conditions this year.
Thanks!

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Old 03-12-2019   #2
 
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Salt Lake City, Utah
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Acess at Rome is paved. Birch creek road has numerous creek crossings and a steep climb out of the top of the canyon. I've rallied a 2wd sprinter around some back roads in Utah and they are fairly capable but I'm not sure I would try Birch in it. Depending on flow you could take out at Leslie and the road is much nicer and less steep.
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Old 03-12-2019   #3
Shapp
 
the grove, Oregon
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I have driven a 2x tacoma pickup out of birch creek several times.
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Old 03-12-2019   #4
 
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Bend, Oregon
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I think high clearance could climb out of Birch under normal conditions in the hands of skilled driver. If you are pulling a raft on a trailer I think that will make it much more difficult, but rear wheel drive would be better than front. If it rains, you will be pretty well hosed without 4wd, maybe even with.
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Old 03-12-2019   #5
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https://www.usbr.gov/pn/hydromet/ram...ee/owyhee.html

Owhyee lake level is very low and you should have current most of the way to Leslie. Leslie is a MUCH BETTER road. Be aware the that the lake mud can swallow trailers. We carry 4 pvc rollers to drag boats out of the water when the water is water is not up to the concrete ramp.
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Old 03-12-2019   #6
Shapp
 
the grove, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whitewater Worthy Equip View Post
https://www.usbr.gov/pn/hydromet/ram...ee/owyhee.html

Owhyee lake level is very low and you should have current most of the way
What you talking about willis? Run off will have significantly occurred by May and maybe even the peak depending on how the snow comes off. The reservoir will likely be full or near full sometime in May and you will have a ton of flat reservoir water to traverse to Leslie Gulch 100% guaranteed with the current amount of snow pack already built up in the Owyhee basin. Looking at the reservoir level in March is of no use to you for a May trip.
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Old 03-13-2019   #7
 
NE, Oregon
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I owned a sprinter and used it for pulling a trailer for rafting. If it was dry you MIGHT make it out, if it's wet no chance. Sprinters can get stuck on a wet cow pie on level ground. The place you will spin out is terrible, long steep single lane that either has loose gravel or bentonite like clay, with a precipitous drop off on one side. If you are lucky you get stuck before that in one of the creek crossings. Personally i wouldnt try it, ymmv
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Old 03-13-2019   #8
 
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In the summer when things are dry Brich is easy. But it gets super slick and muddy when wet in a few places. Things could be good going in. They drop your car. It rains and you're stuck!
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Old 03-13-2019   #9
 
Eugene, 97405
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Has anyone run their own shuttle from Rome to Birch, any estimate of time? Trying to decide if it is worth to send some folks while we rig. Thanks.
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Old 03-14-2019   #10
 
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Northeast Oregon, Oregon
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If you have chains, you could get out at Birch. I would not recommend rowing across the reservoir. I did it once and took 12+ hours (and we ran out of booze).
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