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Category: Articles

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

Bald Eagle Perched Above the Rogue River

This week, Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley introduced the Oregon Wildlands Act that would protect more than 200,000 acres throughout Oregon, primarily along the coast and in the southwest corner of the state. The Oregon Wildlands Act Named the Oregon Wildlands Act, it would include adding more than 56,000 acres to the Wild Rogue Wilderness. Currently, this wilderness area comprises the 38,400 acres surrounding the wild stretch of the Rogue River. The Wild Rogue Wilderness was established in 1978 to protect the watershed. Currently,… Read More

Airplane Turn on the Cal Salmon River

Last year I wrote about the World’s 13 Legendary River Trips, a list of the best expedition style, multi-day river trips. That post was the catalyst for some great discussions about the most legendary single day rafting trips. What makes a trip legendary? The gold standard for a legendary rafting trip is one that is frequently inquired about, remembered, and rehashed around the campfire. The most important factor is great whitewater, but I also considered scenery, length of season, and reputation. I’ve attempted to order these… Read More

Kalmiopsis Wilderness Sign

They have names like Frank Church, Mokelumne, Mount Hood, Kalmiopsis, and Ansel Adams. They are legally designated Wilderness and part of our National Wilderness Preservation System. On September 3rd, 1964 President Lyndon B. Johnson signed a framework into law that would protect wild areas in the United States. Today is the Wilderness Act’s fiftieth birthday. We are lucky to have the Wilderness Act. National Parks in the United States and around the world have historically encouraged road building and structures that increase visitation and use. “The… Read More

Mike Tavares on the Badfish MVP

Whitewater stand up paddleboarding (SUP) is gradually becoming mainstream on Class II and III rivers around the world. This winter there were some great debates in the Whitewater SUP facebook group so I asked the experts to weigh in on the hottest topics. The experts: Ian Smith – SurfSUP Adventures (Pittsburg, PA) Dan Gavere – SUP Instruction (Hood River, OR) Corran Addison – Owner of Corran Addison Paddleboards (San Clemente, CA) Taylor Robertson – Werner Paddles Athlete (Chico, CA) Tim Thornton – River Drifters (Hood River,… Read More

Tim Thornton dressed for SUP success

Last spring while Dan Gavere was in Hood River he showed us the latest whitewater SUP moves and we’ve been practicing. I’m excited to share some photos and descriptions, but first I want to talk safety. 1. “SUP-ping is swimming” so you need to be a solid whitewater swimmer. Think about getting elbow pads, knee pads, and any other body armor you can find. When you fall off your board, you must keep your feet up to avoid a foot entrapments. This dangerous possibility happens when… Read More

Swiftwater Rescue Training

River runners (river guides, kayakers, rafters, catarafters, SUP-ers, riverboarders, etc.) always seem to have their next gear purchase and river trip in mind. With this in mind, here’s a list of suggested gifts for your friends and family who enjoy whitewater rafting and kayaking. 1. Swiftwater Rescue Training Safety first! Everyone can use more safety training and this is a great way to gift a useful experience. Sierra Rescue or the Swiftwater Safety Institute both offer quality training. Additionally, we are offering an advanced swiftwater rescue… Read More

Initiation Rapid on the Wind River

Disclaimer: Northwest Rafting Company receives a small commission when you click some of the links on this page and purchase items through Amazon. I’m getting ready for my first day of winter boating on Washington’s Wind River. Every November when the rain begins I dust off my cataraft and piece it together after a few months of neglect. Here are some things I do before before my first winter paddling trip. A Few General Reminders Inspect your PFD for inflation and consider purchasing a new one.… Read More