Gauge: The gauge only reads in feet, and this section is not commonly done so data points are few. That said, after a handful of recent trips the consensus seems to be 4-4.5 feet is the goldilocks level, not too high, not too low. Runs just under 4' were still considered worthwhile, and a run at 3.5' and dropping slowly was considered worth doing if you've not done it before. If you do the run please report in the comments. If flows are below 3.5' use the lower put in unless you are ok with scraping. A group who camped at the put in bailed when they woke to flows spiking over 5' and there were no eddies to be seen.
Here is a link showing inflow to Green Peter Reservoir, if you subtract the Quarztville flow it is possible to get a ballpark on what is flowing down the Middle Santiam.
This is a unique and remote wilderness run in the heart of Oregon's Cascades. The first day is short, with a creeky feel and a few scouts. The second day has long stretches of fantastic read and run class III/IV rapids separated by easy floating. The scenery is an interesting contrast between old growth wilderness and clear cuts exposing massive cliff walls.
Paddling this run as an overnight trip should be on the bucket list of any Oregonian paddler. It would be a classic if snow did not block the put in road for most of the season.
There is a shelter early on in the run that opens up the run to foul weather overnights. The better camping is near Donaca Creek, on big open gravel and moss bars.
Detailed information in a Trip Report from Into the Outside.
A shorter section requiring a hike in is described here.
The directions for putting in lower are described here, both options described on that page work for boating. The first option puts you in near Shedd Camp Shelter and the second further downstream near the confluence with Pyramid Creek.
Gauge referenced is S.Santiam below Cascadia. Flow here will generally be 100-200cfs less.
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
Use the map below to calculate how
to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.
on Santiam, Middle @1. Sheep Creek Rd to Green Peter Reservoir
Lower Put ins
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