Friday, May 8, 2009

John Day River: Service Creek to Cottonwood Bridge

After a few years away from the John Day River, my parents and I decided that it was time to go back.  (Our last trip was in 2005, you can read about it here) The trip was planned and we headed out at the end of April along with my father in-law.  The river ended up being higher than we had planned so we added on some more miles and opted for the Service Creek put in.  We had 5 days on the river and covered 118 miles.  It was a fun trip. Previously, we had run the Clarno to Cottowood Bridge section in 5 days at 4,500 cfs.  This time we were adding 40 miles for the same time frame.  However, we were also putting on at 13,000 cfs.  

The weather cooperated for the most part.  The wind picked up and really got going on our third day.  I was a little nervous about Clarno rapid knowing that it would be fast with some holes to avoid and with my father in-law a relatively new rafter.  In the end, we elected to just read and run the rapid.  What a great rapid! It was long, not too difficult of moves, and some nice big waves.  We both had nice lines and no problems.  Basalt rapid, just downstream, also proved to be a great rapid at this level.  

The fourth day ended up being our hottest and the fishing finally turned around.  We didn't catch more than perhaps a dozen small mouth bass, but more than we had thought given the high water and cool temperatures.

1 comment:

Let's go rafting! -Will Volpert said...

Good to see you back on the water! Miss you guys...