The Owyhee River offers some wild whitewater and flows through dramatic desert canyons of southwestern Idaho and Oregon. The Owyhee has incredible scenery, abundant wildlife, excellent hiking, and a feeling of peace and seclusion that makes it easy to leave the outside world behind. The Owyhee River's reputation as a big-time whitewater river is well deserved, but there is a quieter side to these beautiful canyons, and the Lower Owyhee has whitewater that is suitable for families. We often see bighorn sheep as we drift along, or surprise them when we are exploring the tight-walled side canyons. We'll also visit some historic trapping and homestead cabins along the way and marvel at the determination of those who made a living in this rough land. A hike to the canyon rim to spot antelope far off in the sagebrush can be a highlight of the trip. Looking out over the miles of open country really gives you a feel for what one guest called the "awesome vastness" of this country. The warms springs on the Middle Owyhee are always a popular stop for boaters. We like to keep our schedule flexible so we can customize every trip. Activities will vary according to the group interests, weather, and water levels.
Day before the trip (any section) - Arrive in Boise, Idaho. That evening we will meet to distribute waterproof packs for your gear and go over last minute details.
Day 1: Drive from Boise to Duck Valley Indian Reservation to begin the trip. The river meanders through a beautiful open valley with nesting geese and ducks. Soon it starts cutting a narrow gorge and we have several miles of class III to IV water.
Days 2 - Day 5: The river will run through several beautiful narrow canyons, alternating with slow meandering stretches, and areas where the canyon opens up. There are some great class III to V+ rapids, including Owyhee Falls, which may have to be portaged or lined. We will have time to explore intriguing side canyons, and the remnants of a homestead.
Day 6: Leisurely float down to Crutchers Crossing. Drive back to Boise, arriving late afternoon or early evening. Those continuing on will now be on the Middle Owyhee.
Airfare is not included in the tour price.
Price: $1,600 for 6 days.
- Transportation from Boise to the river and back to Boise at the end of the trip;
- Meals beginning with lunch on the first day and ending with lunch on the last day;
- Use of our sleeping bags, pads, and tents (or bring your own gear and receive a $40 discount), dry bags, and wetsuits.
Joined InfoHub: Feb 2002
Client Request Served: 27
For over 30 years Joe and Fran Tonsmeire have been providing the finest in wilderness adventure travel. Whether you are enjoying the beaches and hot springs on the Main Salmon, pushing your limits on the class V rapids of the Upper Owyhee, or taking in the beautiful wilderness scenery of the Flathead rivers - your trip...
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