The Crooked River is a highly sought after run for western boaters. The flows are inconsistent, typically short lives, and don't always happen. After a big snow year, or wet late winter / early fall you may catch the river running. It is one of those rivers that once it is runny many paddlers drop everything and head to put-in as it may be the only time that year there is water.

Trip Highlights

Mile 0: Put-in is at Lone Pine Bridge just outside the small town of Terrebonne Oregon. Parking here is very limited and just along the road. When the river is running you may see a handful of cars parked with boaters getting ready.

Mile 2.3: Initiation (IV) starts almost 2 miles of class III+ to IV read and run rapids. This is a good warm up and will help you get a feel for the other large rapid on the river. Don't forget to look up as you are floating through Smith Rocks State Park. You may see climbing scattered through out the walls and spires of the park. Enjoy some flat water as you float through the park. This is also the last place to exit the river before moving down stream.

Mile 7.5: Once you have left Smith Rocks you come to the first big rapid, Number One (IV). Worth getting out and scouting along the right bank.

Number One

Number One

Mile 9.4: After some more class III rapids you will reach Number Two (IV). This scout for this rapid is pretty easy on the right. Right or left of the island in the middle goes. There is a bit of a recovery pool at the bottom but picks back up in the section known as The Bumps.

Mile 10.5: After paddling through The Bumps you will come to is Wap-de-Doodle (IV). This is one of the more intimidating rapids with some big holes, waves, and a couple different lines. Scouting is tough but can be done from the right or the left side of the river.

Wap-de-Doodle

Wap-de-Doodle

Mile 11.7 There are a bunch of fun class III rapids with some fun drops that keep things exciting as you move down stream. The three bridges that span the Crooked River at Peter Skene Ogden State Scenic View Point are a nice marker of where you are at on the river.

Three Bridges spaning the Crooked River

Three Bridges spaning the Crooked River

Mile 15.3: After some fun class III and IV, No Name (V) can sneak up on you. Scouting the rapid can be a really long process as the rapid is long. Keep an eye out for a huge hole that likes to flip rafts in the middle, near the bottom of the rapid. The hole can be a surprise so keep your eyes open.

No Name Rapid

No Name Rapid

Mile 17: China Dam (V) is the last rapid and can be run, or avoided by taking out on the left just above it. Hollywood Road, no vehicles allowed, is the hike out trail. If you take out above China Dam scrambled up to catch the road. If you run the rapid you will meet the road down near the river. The hike out is almost 1 mile with 632 feet of elevation gain.

You can also keep going down stream from China Dam and paddle the lower section of the Crooked River. One of the major obstacles is Opal Springs Dam, which portaged or used as a take-out if prior permission is granted. There are some more rapids down stream of the dam, with a couple miles of flat water paddling on Lake Billy Chinook. Take out on the right after Southwest Jordan Road crosses the Crooked arm of the lake.

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