PERMITS: Applications for the annual permit lottery (for launch dates between May 15th and October 15th) are accepted between December 1st and January 31st. You can also pick up unconfirmed launch dates by phone. Most become available ten days in advance of a launch date. Weekend launches in summer can be tough to get, but if you're flexible you can usually get a permit. Off-season permits are available by request. Additional information on permits can be found on the Rogue National Wild and Scenic (NWS) River web site.
Just downstream of the Grave Creek boat ramp, the main channel flows down the left side of the river. Follow the main current down the tongue.
A vertical drop formed by a ledge. Follow the main tongue left of center to avoid rocks on the right.
A wide bedrock ledge blocks the river creating a 10-12' drop. The main current flows steeply over the left side into powerful reversals (class V). Scattered boulders guard the middle and right side of the river at the top of the rapid, but a route exists through the rocks to a center chute (class IV+). A narrow and shallow fish ladder was blasted into the bedrock on the far river right side which serves as the most common route through the rapid (class III). On busy days, raft traffic can get backed up at the fish ladder. Be sure the route is clear before committing and pay careful attention to oar management to avoid breaking one. At lower flows both the center chute and fish ladder become tight for big rafts.
Named for Chinese miners who worked in the canyon, this rapid is a straightforward read and run.
A long and wide gravel bar on the left pushes the river against the right side. The channel curves back to the left, then splits around a large midstream boulder. Take care to avoid the ledge holes that form in this rapid.
The river splits around a long island and picks up speed. The preferred line is generally down the right but the left line is possible. When the channels converge the river bends to the right through the main part of the rapid.
Upper Black Bar Falls is a steep drop into a big curling wave. It can be scouted from the right bank.
Lower Black Bar Falls, follows the upper drop after a short distance of calm water. The lower drop is more straightforward down the main tongue to the right of center.
The river curves to the right around a large gravel bar, then curves back to the left around a narrow gooseneck of hillside. The current pushes against the cliffs and boulders on the outside of each curve, creating waves and turbulence. Two constrictions create bigger drops.
This area is private property, but river runners are allowed to land and walk up to look at the log cabin. The property was owned in the 1920's by famous western novelist, Zane Grey.
The river enters a very narrow and scenic inner canyon. Interesting and challenging hydraulics are created by the current bouncing off the walls in the narrow confines.
The crux move in Mule Creek Canyon is the Coffee Pot where the bedrock walls constrict the flow creating a series of boils and surging eddy lines.
Huge boulders block the center and right side at the top of this rapid. The main current flows down the left side, straight into a "picket fence" of boulders and sieves. You can eddy out on river right and scout from a high vantage point above the rapid. The standard move is to enter left and then cut back to the center to avoid the picket fence.
The Devils Stairs comes up quick at the end of the pool below Blossom Bar. Follow the main tongue as the river bends to the right, taking care to avoid the wall on river right.
These are the last rapids on any significant size before Foster Bar. Clay Hill Creek comes in on the right before the rapid. The main line is down the right channel. Stay to the left side of this channel on the main tongue. Below this rapid the geology changes from volcanic to sedimentary.
The take out is on river right just past the mouth of Foster Creek. Derig on a big, wide and treeless gravel bar.
I'm lucky enough to live in S. Oregon so this run is in my extended backyard and I been down it around 20 times. Mostly as a spur of the moment mid week grab a couple of cancellation spots, book a room at the lodge two day kayak trip. If you can plan and act quick this is a great way to go, esp. for kayakers. I just throw in a pair of shorts, shirt, flip flops, wag bag and a lunch into the back of the boat and away we go. I've been down on many flow levels, But my favorite levels are between 3,200 to 4,000cfs on the Agness gauge. Between these parameters; the water moves thru the pools, the rapids have more push and this is to my mind the best level for playboating, you'll find some great waves scattered about down below Paradise at these flows. Below 3,000cfs, I'll bring a longer boat to ease the paddling effort thru the long slow pools. I highly recommend hiking up to the waterslide on Tate Ck....it's tons of fun! Blossom is a pretty easy move but don't underestimate it and get yourself in a class 4 frame of mind when running it .
At 1500cfs The Fishladder sneak (Rainey Falls) is a boney but easy III. Big rafts will get stuck a lot, you can still line dories easily. Tyee is an easy III (not a IV), and Blossom is a III+ with a must make move to avoid the Picket Fence. We did it in 3 days, I would highly recommend 5 days unless you like to row flatwater a whole lot.
Rainie can be run one of three ways. There are class III, IV, and V options.
The header info for this reach says Class II-III. The text describes Rainie as a V and Blossom Bar as a IV. I think Blossom is a III+ and Rainie is a IV+. Either way, the header info (II-III) is incorrect. -ah
Floaters guide to the Wild and Scenic Rogue River
Plan for the development, operation and management of the Rogue National Wild and Scenic River.
This report summarizes the results of an economic analysis of recreation-related spending on the Wild & Scenic Rogue River.
The flow is regulated somewhat by Lost Creek Reservoir upstream. High water occurs during winter rains when flows are typically 4000-8000 cfs. Summer flows are typically around 2000 cfs.
Very high flows can occur and are run. Neil Nikirk reports, "I ran it years ago on a self-bailer demo trip at around 20,000 and the Oregon Club (NWRA) used to run it at Thanksgiving up to around 30,000. To tell the truth, a lot of things wash out, but there are some big hydraulics, particularly left side at Rainie... Blossom is big, but wide open. The VW rock is a big compression wave..."
The preferred shuttle route is the Bear Camp Road (FR 23) to Foster Bar Landing. The 44 mile drive takes about two hours (one way). This option may be closed due to snow or debris slides. The long route is 193 miles and takes about five hours (one way) on Oregon Highway 199, but this is along paved roads and is open through the winter. The Rogue NWS River web site has shuttle maps and current conditions. Many take advantage of one of the local shuttle services--some are listed in the Gear, Guides and Services tab above.
Entering Quiz Show
Grave Creek Falls
Big Windy Creek
Foster Bar Boat Ramp
Clay Hill Rapids
China Bar Rapid
below Horseshoe Bend
Upper Black Bar
Windy Creek Chute
Shredder Action in Tyee
Grave Creek Riffle Shredder run
Upper Blossom Bar
Whitewater SUP on the Rogue
SUP on the Rogue
Tate Creek Slide
Lower Black Bar Falls
Upper Black Bar Falls
Rainie Falls, Fish Ladder
Grave Creek Riffle
Grave Creek Bridge
Almeda River Access
Kelsey Creek Camp
Center Channel at Blossom Bar
Kayakers entering Blossom Bar
Blossom Bar, top with Dory
Blossom Bar, Right side entrance
Oar in Picket Fence, Dory stuck below
Entrance to Blossom Bar
Oar stuck in the Picket Fence
Foster Bar, boat ramp
Mule Creek Canyon
Narrows, Mule Creek Canyon entrance
Zane Grey's Cabin
Rainie Falls, salmon leaping
Rainie Falls, looking downstream
Fish Ladder portage at Rainie Falls
Grave Creek boat ramp
Floating the Rogue
Below Rainie Falls
Rainie Falls, Rogue
If someone gets hurt on a river, or you read about a whitewater-related injury, please report it to
American Whitewater. Don't worry about multiple submissions from other witnesses, as our safety
editors will turn multiple witness reports into a single unified accident report.
At the end of last Congress, the House and Senate negotiated a public lands package that ultimately resulted in 256 new miles of Wild and Scenic Rivers for Oregon when the John D. Dingell, Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act was signed into law on March 12th, 2019. While rivers like the Molalla and several tributaries of the Rogue were designated Wild and Scenic, the lands surrounding the immediate river corridor were left unprotected. With a commitment to finish the job, and building on the successful effort to move these initiatives out of committee with bipartisan support last Congress, Senator Wyden was joined by Senator Merkley in introducing the Oregon Recreation Enhancement Act (S. 1262) on May 1st, 2019. The bill is scheduled for a hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on May 14th, 2019.
For the past few years, the staff of America Whitewater has joined with a number of our members to participate in a four-day float trip on the Rogue River in southern Oregon. This trip has been a great opportunity to connect with members in ways that build a lasting understanding of the role of recreation in fostering a stewardship ethic. As one of the original eight Wild and Scenic Rivers in the country, the Rogue is an outstanding classroom for American Whitewater’s river stewardship program.
Join American Whitewater staff and board members for an exclusive trip on Oregon’s Rogue River. Our June 2016 trip is approaching and space fills quickly. Learn more about our river stewardship program while enjoying the outstanding multi-day river trip.
In June 2015, American Whitewater members will have an opportunity to join American Whitewater staff and board members for an exclusive trip on Oregon’s Rogue River. We invite you to come learn more about what we're up to while having a great time enjoying one of our nation’s first Wild and Scenic Rivers.
This summer, American Whitewater members will have an opportunity to join American Whitewater staff and board members for an exclusive trip on Oregon’s Rogue River. We invite you to come learn more about what we're up to while having a great time enjoying one of our nation’s first Wild and Scenic Rivers. The trip will take place June 5-8.
The BLM has implemented a river closure for the Wild and Scenic Rogue River between Grave Creek and Mule Creek due to extreme fire conditions and public health and safety. In addition the Bear Camp shuttle road and Rogue River trail are closed.
Earlier today, Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) re-introduced a set of wilderness bill including the Oregon Treasures Act, legislation that would protect the Chetco River, Molalla River, Rogue River, and Horse Heaven and Cathedral Rock sections along the John Day River.
Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley along with Representatives Peter DeFazio, Earl Blumenauer, and Kurt Schrader have introduced legislation (S.2001/H.R.3436) to permanently protect portions of the Rogue River and its surrounding forests. The legislation would protect the quality of the world-class recreational experience this river provides.
American Whitewater is asking our members, particularly those living in Oregon to take action to protect the Wild Rogue. The Rogue River Wilderness and Rogue River Wild and Scenic River represents one of Oregon's most treasured natural landscapes. Legislstion in Congress (H.R. 2890 and S. 1271) will provide more comprehensive protection for the river corridor for future generations.
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