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Category: Articles

Osprey Flying above the Rogue River

Here’s why ospreys are unique Over 10,000 bird species grace our planet’s skies, but only nine occupy every habitat available to them. While two of the nine – pigeon and sparrow – are as familiar to us as cats and dogs, the other seven – short-eared owl, cattle egret, great egret, peregrine falcon, barn owl, tern and osprey – are hiding in plain sight. They spread thanks to humans Pigeons and sparrows are a common sight in pretty much every major city in the world. The… Read More

Western Azalea in the Kalmiopsis Wilderness

Our trips on the Chetco River begin with a 10 mile hike from the east side of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness to the Chetco River at Carter Creek. From there we paddle 19 miles across this vast and dramatic federally protected wilderness. One of the best parts of these trips are seeing the many rare and endangered plants while we are hiking and paddling. The uniqueness of the botany is due in large part to the serpentine rocks and soils of the area. These serpentine soils lack… Read More

Paddle boat in Green Wall Rapid

A few rapids loom larger than others when river guides tell tales around the campfire. Here’s a list of the biggest rapids from a river guide’s perspective – in alphabetical order. Not big enough for you? If you’re an accomplished kayaker or extreme rafter, you’ll want to scroll down to the bottom of this page to see a round-up of rapids that are bigger, but not commonly discussed among river guides. 1. Blossom Bar (Rogue River, Oregon) You don’t get to be known as “the most… Read More

The Grand Canyon of the Colorado River

Maybe you’ve heard the roar of Lava Falls echoing up the canyon or maybe you’ve just heard about it. Any trip down the Grand Canyon comes down to the climactic moment of rowing Lava. But there is plenty of time to practice before you get to Lava at Mile 179.7 and there are specific rowing techniques that are important to know for the Colorado River. A river with the longest and most storied whitewater rowing history in America. Quick History of Rowing the Grand Canyon John… Read More

Middle Fork of the Salmon River

1. The Wild and Scenic Rivers Act is 48 years old! President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act into law by on October 2, 1968. The act turns 50 in 2018. “We are establishing a National Wild and Scenic Rivers System which will complement our river development with a policy to preserve sections of selected rivers in their free-flowing conditions and to protect their water quality and other vital conservation values.” – President Lyndon B. Johnson 2. Wild and Scenic Rivers have… Read More

We offer three different types of rafts: oar boats, paddle boats, and inflatable kayaks (aka “duckies”). On your trip registration you will be asked about what percentage of the trip you would like to be in each type of boat. This is just an estimation for us that allows us to make informed decisions about which boats to bring. It’s typical to switch boats each day as you make new friends and get more comfortable on the river. The Oar Raft These large rafts carry all… Read More

What to wear on a cold weather rafting trip

Dressing comfortably and fashionably for overnight river trips requires a little advance planning. You will want clothes to wear on the river and in camp. On the River 2+ Shorts or Swimsuits 2+ Shirts Lightweight Wool or Polypro Shirt River Shoes or River Sandals Hat for Sun Protection Sunscreen & Lip Balm Water Bottle Sunglasses with Strap River Clothes: For your daytime river outfit, you’ll want quick-drying clothes so that you don’t feel soggy all day. Wearing shorts with a lightweight long or short-sleeved shirt are… Read More

Oregon Wild and Scenic Rivers

In 1968 the U.S. Congress created the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System with passage of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. The bill was in response to increasing diversion and impoundment of water, pollution, introduced species, wildfires, poor management of adjacent lands and other human pressures on rivers.[i] It was sponsored by Senator Frank Church (D) of Idaho and signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The act strove to collaboratively balance development and protection of outstanding free-flowing rivers for current and future generations. [ii]… Read More

The Cataraft Slalom Race at the Upper Clackamas Whitewater Festival

Earlier this month I attended the Upper Clackamas Whiteater Festival. If you for some crazy reason have never been, you should go next year. It has the relaxed friendly atmosphere of a county fair with lots of competitions on the water and a great community of dedicated boaters. One of the best features for rafters is the fleets of demo rafts and catarafts brought by the manufacturers. A supremely helpful crew of volunteers drive boats on flat bed trailers to a put-in upstream and then pick… Read More

Long Pants and a Lightweight Jacket or Hoody are Great for Cool Evenings

Wearing comfortable, functional clothing is important in a wild environment, but dressing fashionably (AKA, looking “steezy”) is also important. stee·zy adj. 1. a combination of style and ease 2. wearing appropriate clothing for a frolic in the woods and looking proper 3. dressing fashionably for a wilderness adventure without much effort v. steezing, -ify [example: “Ryan looks steezy wearing that pataguch hoody”] On the River: Base Layers First we’ll start with the functional part of your wardrobe. Your very first layer could be a swimsuit or… Read More