Pick guests up at their hotel in Ashland between 8 and 9 in the morning and head up the edge of where the Cascades meet the Siskiyou’s to the “put-in” at the Spring Island boat launch. Have a continental breakfast while the guides are getting the boats ready and do a short safety and orientation talk. After that hop into the boats and begin the trip downriver.
The Upper Klamath begins with a fun class-III warm-up stretch which makes it a recommended rafting trip for first-timers or experts in good health. After about 3 miles of warm up the canyon constricts, the river drops out of sight, and enter the famous “Hells Corner” section of the canyon – beginning with a 150 yard rapid known as ‘Caldera’. There are very few stretches of summer whitewater like it. Somewhere in the canyon you will pull over for a big lunch.
In the afternoon, pull into our comfortable riverside Upper Klamath Bush Camp. The afternoon and evening can be spent hiking, fly-fishing, playing games in the sun, or just hanging out. Have appetizers, a big dinner, and desert.
This trip can be very active or more relaxed – it’s up to you! It is perfect for experienced and first time paddlers (and for those who find regular camping not to be their cup of tea). However all guests need to be in reasonable physical condition for the whitewater rafting section and for a short but steep 150 yard hike on day two. If you have any questions or concerns please give us a call or an email.
Day 1 was a big day, but for those interested day 2 can be even bigger. If you choose you can mountain bike or run, raft, and inflatable kayak. After a hearty breakfast and plenty of time for a second cup of coffee you will leave base camp and guests will have a number of options. Have a short journey along a narrow old dirt stage coach road that winds through remote pine forests, meadows and the old west ruins of a time in the not-so-distant past. You have a choice of a 6 mile mountain bike ride (or run) or a short (but bumpy) drive. The track is rolling, but does not include any significant climbs.
The track will drop us off by the rafts and at the top of Caldera Rapid – the first major rapid of the run. Run the big continues class IV+ section again and stop for lunch. After passing camp and exiting the canyon guests will have the choice of staying in a raft or jumping in an inflatable kayak and running whitewater under their own guidance. The last section is class II+ (class III+ in the kayaks) and quickly flows through a more open canyon. For many this can be the most exciting and memorable section of the trip.
Finish the trip on the California side of the Siskiyou’s and return to Ashland around 6 in the afternoon.
PLEASE NOTE: guests may need to be physically able to walk up a steep 150 yard trail to exit camp.