Rafting Oregon’s Lower Owyhee River V 18-Apr-2019

Day 5: “Andy’s” Camp to Birch Creek Take-out (5,030 cfs)

The last day on the river is always bittersweet – sad to be leaving such a beautiful and peaceful place but looking forward (perhaps secretly) to a hot shower (particularly enticing after these colder weather trips). Since we’d camped farther downstream than planned, we got a later start than usual for the short run to the take-out at Birch Creek [RM 51].

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Rafting Oregon’s Lower Owyhee River IV 17-Apr-2019

Day 4: Upper Whistling Bird Camp to “Andy’s” Camp (6,820 cfs)

Some high clouds came in overnight, but brought no rain, so the day got off to an easy start. This was good, because today would be our longest and busiest one on the river. We started by passing through the towering cliffs of Iron Point Canyon, which are formed from erosion-resistant rhyolite.

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Rafting Oregon’s Lower Owyhee River III 16-Apr-2019

Day 3: Pruitt’s Castle Camp to Upper Whistling Bird Camp (6,740 cfs)

The rain ceased in the night and we awoke to a day of gloriously dry clarity. 😎 The colors and shapes that form Pruitt’s Castle, which had looked drab under yesterday’s cloudy skies, lit up exuberantly in the morning light. After the baggage rafts left, we did a short hike over to view the Chalk Basin and Lambert Dome.

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Rafting Oregon’s Lower Owyhee River II 15-Apr-2019

Day 2: Lower Fletcher Camp to Pruitt’s Castle Camp (4,850 cfs)

The rain ceased in the night, so today started out overcast but dry. We need the rain but life outdoors is just easier when you’re not perpetually moist. The day stayed mostly overcast, with occasional spots of almost clearing. Teaser sucker-holes. Happily, it didn’t rain again, and then only briefly, until we’d reached camp at Pruitt’s Castle [RM 24.5]. After breakfast, we floated down to Weeping Wall Springs to take on fresh, clear water (the river water is pretty silty), have lunch, and take a short hike.

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Rafting Oregon’s Lower Owyhee River I 14-Apr-2019

Background

The Owyhee River and its tributaries incise dramatic and awe-inspiring canyons in the sagebrush and grass-covered plains of northeastern Nevada, southwestern Idaho, and southeastern Oregon. These expansive plains and deep canyons represent some of the most stunningly scenic terrain on offer in Oregon.

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U.S. Route 20 Across the U.S.: Days 9 & 10 (October 2016)

Ketchum, Idaho to Bend, Oregon (~470 miles)

We got an early start from Ketchum and had US20 pretty much all to ourselves as we went west toward its merge with I-84 at Mountain Home, Idaho.  US20 departs from I-84 from time to time between Mountain Home and Ontario, Oregon but we just stayed with I-84 through Boise, Idaho to Ontario.  Boise has become an increasingly interesting place to visit but not so much so early on a Sunday morning, so we skipped it this time.  After Boise, we crossed the Snake River after almost exactly 3,000 miles of driving and were home again in Oregon!  We picked-up US20 in Ontario, went through Vale (where the rain started up again), along the Malheur River to Drinkwater Pass, and then on to Burns, Oregon.

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