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I have time off in March so I’m thinking of my next trip. Any recommendations for class III- IV H20.. cataract concerns me cause I don’t have a motor. Owyhee might not have the flow.. I’m new to rafting in the states but I’m stoked.. oh, and the salt is to far from where I live. Southern BC.. would the salmon have whitewater in March?
 

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March is 5 months away. Nobody can tell you what is going to have water or what the weather is going to be like. Ask again in February...
 

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The Salmon will most likely still be iced up in spots. If I were you I'd look at Hells Canyon. Lower elevation, guaranteed whitewater and flow due to the dam and there probably wouldn't be that many people that time of year.
 

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Interested, thanks for the invite!
I had an awesome season, still not ready for upcoming hard water season, already thinking of next year.


Southern BC is still going to be cold as hell.

It's not a multiday, but the Lochsa usually has some fun flows by late March. Wilderness Gateway is usually still snowed in and the Ghetto is quiet.
 

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I've run Hells Canyon several times in March, typically the weather is nice and the annoying things are not out yet (people and Poison ivy). Flows are usually good as well. I'd recommend taking out at Dug Bar, Snake Lake can really suck that time of year.
 

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Lately we've been doing a mid-March Lower Salmon River trip in Idaho.
11 or 12 days, 132 miles, Class II and III.
PM for details.
 

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Deadwater the giant ice dam that forms in the slow stretch just below north fork typically goes out sometime in March. Once that goes out The salmon is usually going to be clear.. I would suspect that the lower would be clear before that. The ice dam at deadwater can be huge on cold winters.. I think it was 17 that it was backed up about five miles above salmon.. so it was a good 25 mile long ice dam..

Owyhee can be hit or miss but that is my go to early season run.

Ran the salt last year in march and that was awesome. Permited and less likely to run than the owyhee.. As said before it's really early to know what anything is going to look like.
 

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I need a March trip as well. I just got off the Snake through Hell’s Cy, and need one more trip to tune up for the Grand in late April. With familiarity now with Hell’s, I’d have to recommend that run for a shoulder season trip. I’m in Bellingham-you?
 

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I would definitely look at Hells vs the Main or Lower Salmon. Cold weather boating is better, with less ice, on N/S rivers. There are too many spots along those two rivers with large southern hills/cliffs to block the sun to the river and allow ice dams to possibly develop. But then again, March is pretty late for ice dams. The N/S vs E/W aspects also affects how cold you will get boating, as you will get more direct sun on the N/S sections, such as Hells. (Lower has more N/S than the Main FWIW). But if the Owyhee is running, go there, mid week if possible.
 

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I would definitely look at Hells vs the Main or Lower Salmon. Cold weather boating is better, with less ice, on N/S rivers. There are too many spots along those two rivers with large southern hills/cliffs to block the sun to the river and allow ice dams to possibly develop. But then again, March is pretty late for ice dams. The N/S vs E/W aspects also affects how cold you will get boating, as you will get more direct sun on the N/S sections, such as Hells. (Lower has more N/S than the Main FWIW). But if the Owyhee is running, go there, mid week if possible.
This is pretty genius advice.

I'd always thought "winter boating will be cold because the sun is below the ridge most of the day" rather than, "pick a river that aligns with the low sun's path". (DUH!)


Awesome sauce!
 
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