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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm planning a Hell's Canyon trip, and was hoping to get some information about whether to do the Wild Section with kids. Specifically, I was wondering if it is an option to walk around Wild Sheep and Granite? Also, the Forest Service Guide Book lists Lower Bernard Creek, Waterspout, and Rush Creek as III-IV, but I haven't heard much information about those rapids. Are they relatively straight forward read-and-run? Finally, I was wondering about the RiverMaps guide compared to the Forest Service guide. My experience is that some of the RiverMaps have great information (e.g. the Grand Canyon Guide), while others seem to be essentially a waterproof book of maps with rapids and camps labelled. What are thoughts on the Snake/Lower Salmon RiverMaps?
 

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The new RiverMaps guide is helpful. Somebody jump in here, I think there is a hiking trail the whole hells canyon wild section, but never paid that much attention to it.
 

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wild sheep is easily walked along the left hand bank... I'm pretty sure you could walk the left hand or right hand side of granite... The scout is on the right... But this rapid is really easy to skirt the left hand side of... It's a four if you run right or put it in the huge hole in the middle.. waterspout is easy to stay out of the bad stuff and could just enter middle right and then pull left.. If you get left it gets a little bumpy but still only a 3.. I think it would be a class 4 walk around.... Bernard is no big deal.. everything is pool drop... and has big open areas to pull over above and below each rapid...
 

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There is a good trail on the Idaho side all the way from the dam to Pittsberg, don't remember how far above the water it is in places though I think it is readily accesible around the two big rapids. There is a trail on the Oregon side most of the way too. The only rapids we ever scout are Wild Sheep & Granite just to remember where we want to be. I don't remember anything tricky in the rapids - it all amounts to lining up in the entry. I rowed the wild section last year with no problems on the first trip with my own boat so it can't be tricky or I wouldn't have made it :cool:
 

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How old are the kids?
 

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Definitely a reasonable river for kids depending on your skill level. We are taking our 9 year old this year, but ultimately it is the decision of the individual.

Have you run H.C. before?

What are your dates?

Is your spouse a confident boater/passenger?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I picked up the Whitis guidebook and agree with the comments below. It is well written with good information.

After reading the guidebook, and the posts below, I did want to follow up on Waterspout, as that might not have a walk-around options. My permit is for August 18th, and based upon historical flows (2012 and 2013, which aren't perfect models for this years snowpack), I'm expecting 8000-12000 cfs. Is the right side run available at those flows?

Thanks all for the comments.
 

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I wouldn't worry to much about Waterspout that time of year. You should be able to go through it without even getting wet.
 

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About right there, I don't think I did get wet in waterspout two days ago. Very read and run straight forward as long as you have a half reasonable boatman and an adult to hang onto the smallest kiddo I see no problems. Or even a lousy boatman and a person to hang on to the kiddo should be fine :cool:
 
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