Difficulty III+(IV)
Length 9 Miles
Flow Range 1100 - 5000 CFS
Flow Rate as of: 41 minutes ago 1240 [CFS] ℹ️
Reach Info Last Updated 11/28/2019 12:42 am

River Description

In the spring this reach is often run as a continuation of the Upper Crooked particularly by rafts that don't have a practical means of taking out at Crooked River Ranch.

This reach can be run by itself as springs provide sufficient inflow for this reach through the summer for kayakers.  Rafts would not have such a good time at summer flows. The primary issue for either rafts, or kayaks doing this section is access which is less than ideal on both ends of the run.

The dam at Opal Springs generates hydropower and is a 4.3 MW project licensed by the Deschutes Valley Water District as FERC Project 5891. The project was licensed in 1982, constructed in 1985, and will be eligible for relicensing in 2032 when the current license expires.


To reach the put-in from Terrebone, head north on Highway 97 but before you cross the river head west at Highway 97 mile 115.3 on Lower Bridge Road towards Crooked River Ranch. Follow Lower Bridge Rd. 2.1 miles and turn right on NW 43rd St. Continue 1.8 miles to the T junction and turn left on NW Powey Ave. Continue on this road, which becomes Chinook Dr., for 3.2 miles as it drops down to the golf course and turn right on Clubhouse Rd. Drive in 0.4 mile heading right at the church and past the cabins to parking along a fence a short distance from the gorge rim. From this parking spot, you can hike the old Hollywood Road which is the gate to the east of where you park. The road is no longer accessible be vehicles as several boulders have come down from the cliffs above and vegetation has grown in making it nothing more than a trail. It's about a mile down this road to the river which provides access near river mile 13. Due to the steep climb, the option of this put-in as a practical alternative is only feasible for kayaks or IK's.

At the take-out you have to paddle out on Billy Chinook Reservoir. Some rafts have arranged access at Opal Springs (at river mile 7.2) thus avoiding the long paddle on the reservoir but the word is not to do the calling yourself as too many people phoning in has resulted in nobody having access. Arrangements need to be made through the paddling community with someone who has the necessary contacts. For the rest of us you'll just need to be prepared to paddle out on the reservoir which begins near river mile 6. The take-out is located where a bridge crosses the Crooked River Arm of the reservoir at river mile 3.2 (of what was the historic river bed of the Crooked).

Rapid Descriptions


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Simon O'Gorman
3 years ago

A flow of 1240 is sufficient to run this section of the crooked as the springs fill the river year round.

Gage Descriptions

In contrast to the reach upstream of this one, boating is possible nearly year around due to numerous springs that supplement the minimal flow released from the dams several miles upstream. For this reach check the USBR gauge Crooked River below Opal Springs. Preferred flows are above 1400 cfs but flows are generally always above 1000 cfs which is enough for a kayak. Check out the teacup diagram to determine the status of reservoirs upstream.

Directions Description

We have no additional detail on this route. Use the map below to calculate how to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.

No Accident Reports



article main photo

Crooked River Flow Study Published

Thomas O'Keefe

AW has completed a study of instream flow needs for recreation on the Crooked River in Oregon. The information will provide river managers with important information on how the river is used by whitewater paddlers.


Matt Muir


Jacob Cruser


Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1193548 04/29/08 n/a n/a
1213952 11/28/19 n/a updated image position
1213953 11/28/19 Jacob Cruser updated description