The Deschutes River runs hundreds of miles from the mountains near Bend, Oregon to the Columbia River. The river is runnable for it's entire length offering rapids from Class I to VI, great fishing, and overnight trip options. The most popular section of the Deschutes is from Harpham to Sandy Flat and runs through the small town of Maupin.

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River DriftersRiver Drifters (800) 972-0430 offers half day, full day, and multi-day rafting trips throughout Oregon and Washington.

This is among the most popular sections of river in Oregon due to fun rapids and consistent flow and is a great place to raft on a hot summer day. You'll definitely want to take-out at Sandy Beach since this is the last place to take out before the Class VI Sherars Falls.

Everyone loves the Deschutes River!

Everyone loves the Deschutes River! | Photo by River Drifters

Trip Highlights

Mile 0: Put-in at Harpham Flat.

Mile 0.8: Just down stream from Harpham Flat put in is Wapinitia Rapid (III)

Wapinitia Rapid on the Deschutes River

Wapinitia Rapid on the Deschutes River

Mile 2: A 1950' s train wreck gives the namesake to the next rapid, Boxcar Rapid (III). A ledge creates a fun drop with a large hole on the left side.

Boxcar Rapid on the Deschutes River

Boxcar Rapid on the Deschutes River | Photo by River Drifters.

Mile 7.9: Surf City (II+) offers paddlers a chance to work on their surfing.

Mile 8.3: Just below the fish hatchery on the left, a lava rock island divides the river and forms Oak Springs Rapid (III).  The right channel contains a large hole.

Mile 9.6: Just after the confluence with the Whiter River is Upper Elevator Rapid (II).  This is a popular wave train to hop out of your boat and swim with your life jacket on.

Mile 10.1 Sandy Beach take out is on the right.

Since the Deschutes River is so popular it is also heavily regulated. If you float the Deschutes you must have a Boater Pass which can be bought from a vendor or on the Boater Pass web site. The passes sell out in advance during the busy summer months so be sure to purchase your pass well in advance of your trip.