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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was wondering how low is too low for sevice creek to clarno section,its about 960 cfs right now
 

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The blm recommends 500 CFS or more for rafts, that seems pretty low, might be worth calling them for some 1st hand info.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah I saw that as well and thought it seemed pretty low,I've never been on the john day and I was thinking about a week from now, I saw that there were a few launches selected on the calender, I was hoping to do it in 2 1/2 days but I can't imagine it's moving very fast now
 

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I've done it as low as 1200 cfs with a medium load on my 14'er, and there was an occasional rub over gravel bars. Probably wouldn't try under 800 with that rig. Avoid the afternoon breeze through Twickenham.
 

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We did about 2 weeks ago, 1300 cfs if I recall and it was slooooww. We had no issues with enough water but upriver wind + minimal current meant long days. I can't speak for the flows your looking at but I would suggest taking as much time as you can afford, so your not on the water all day...

On the plus side you won't run into our other issue, many of the camps taken... We had a really hard time finding any fair camps that weren't taken much less good ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well theres always next year lol, looks like I'm just going to go camp out on the mckenzie for a couple days instead, maybe float the deschutes
 

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So, is this still the general consensus? We're scheduled to put in on the John Day on Wednesday. We're in a 15' raft with two adults and two kids, two dry boxes, cooler -- the usual family setup. BLM says 500 cfs. The gal at Service Creek said we'd be OK down to 300'ish. Flow is presently at 630. Are we screwed?
 

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Its do-able but may not be fun. Have floated it many times. I've put on in an aluminum drift boat with two fat passengers and gear at 800 csf and dropping and made it but with a few scrapes and a bit of dragging here and there
River getting a little bump from recent rain but even with that you will get stuck a bit and need some passenger help
Long slow stretches which can be unpleasant if the wind blows which isn't guaranteed but not uncommon. So from service creek I'd say 3 nights minimum, 4 might be better. You can save 12 miles by putting in at Twickenham
On the plus side the fishing gets better and finding camps is easier
If you want an easier family float the Grand Rhonde or Deschutes might be a better pick right now, or if you are set on experiencing the John Day without the extra grunt work, you could camp at Priest Hole and rent some Ik's and do some day floats
 

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Super helpful. Thanks. We're set to do the Grand Ronde July 2-4 and the lower Deschutes July 12-15. Was hoping to do the John Day for the first time this year, but I fear we scheduled it too late. Maybe we'll do the Grand Ronde twice.
 

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I forgot to update this thread last year. When we finally put in at Service Creek, we were at 1000 cfs and it dropped to about 800 cfs over three days. We had no trouble in a fully loaded 15’ raft with two adults, two kids and a dog. I would, however, offer that it turned out to be a lot of rowing, particularly on the last day. If I had to do it again at that level, I would put in at Twickenham.
 
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