Umpqua, N., Oregon, US
|Usual Difficulty||III (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||36 fpm|
|N UMPQUA RIVER ABV COPELAND CK NR TOKETEE FALLS,OR|
|usgs-14316500||500 - 4000 cfs||III||01h53m||961 cfs (running)|
This is an ideal class III river. The rapids are closer together near the top and slowly get
farther apart. Some kayakers like Horshoe Bend to Gravel Bin best, but anything above Susan Creek
is good fun. The beauty is great, the isolation is good, the season is long. This river is best
after the first heavy rain in the fall and lasts all the way to memorial day. After that the
water starts down and the crowds increase.
This run splits conveniently into five sections. Shorter runs are possible.
One and a Quarter Miles: The put-in is a little rugged for rafts. This section is more continuous and a lot of fun.
Six and a Half Miles: Bolder flat is the usual put-in for rafts and summer runs. After Bolder Hole, the flat spots are a little longer. Be sure to stop under Marster's Bridge to play and again just above the Old Marsters Bridge abutments for the best spin spot. This section ends with a bang: Dog Wave, Puppy Wave, Happy Rock, Cardiac Arrest and Weird Weir.
Seven and a Half Miles: This section is the busiest. About half way through you pass under Apple Creek Bridge. After the long flat spot comes a short lead in (Allegator) and then Pinball. Pinball is class IV if you have four complete idiots in a non self bailing paddle raft. It is a class III swim. Just before the take-out, at Island Campground, is wave city. Save some strength for this.
Fourteen Miles: This has more flat water between rapids than the sections above, but some of the biggest rapids. Watch out for Bathtub at low water and Ledges at high water. This section is best in the spring when the water is higher and before the summer fish closure.
Six Miles: This is class II with long flat spots. Be sure of your take-out. Deadline Falls is easily recognized, but the climb up the rip-rap is rough for all but young kayakers. Deadline Falls is class V and I have it on good authority that the bottom is smooth and deep.
Shuttle: Road Map
To get to the take-out: Take I5 to Roseburg exit 124 and follow the signs to state highway 138 east. Go east past Swiftwater Park and plan to take out just upstream at Deadline Falls, or a little farther upstream at Cable Crossing depending on the size of your boat and how athletic you feel.
To get to Susan Creek: Just past MP 28 turn right into Susan Creek Day Use Area. The river access for loading and unloading is straight ahead down the dirt road. Please park in the day use area parking lot after loading. If you plan to take out here, check the beach for recognition. It is inconspicuous from the river.
To get to Gravel Bin: Most trips either start or finnish here. Continue up highway 138 to MP 40. The Raft Takeout is well marked.
To get to Horseshoe Bend: Continue up highway 138 a mile past MP 46 and turn right on USFS 4750. Follow the river access signs. This is a good lunch spot for Bolder to Gravel runs.
To get to Bolder Flat: Continue up highway 138 a half mile past MP 53 and turn left into Bolder Flat Campground. Turn right at the 'Access' sign. Parking is free if you do not take up a camp space.
To get to the put-in: Continue on upstream about one mile past MP 54 to Medicine Cr Rd (USFS 4775). Turn left and left again onto Soda Springs Road. Take this road back past the dam to the power house. Just upstream of the power house is a poor trail to the pool above the tailrace.