Turn it On: October means more water in local rivers | Outside Features | Bend | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon
Pin It

Turn it On: October means more water in local rivers 

October is here and that means the river will rise! Canals that flow out of the Deschutes to irrigate agriculture in the surrounding areas will be shut off, and flows will increase substantially, making it possible to kayak down sections of the river that are too boney and shallow for a kayak during the warmer months.

I interviewed a few local kayaking experts about their favorite fall kayak trips and both the Riverhouse Run and the Middle Deschutes were mentioned as the best around.

Although some of the local irrigation districts stop drawing water from the canals in early October, it can sometimes take through mid-October for the river to substantially rise. Paddlers can check river levels at Oregonkayaking.net (and then click on Oregon River flows) for the most current information on the feasibility of kayaking different sections of the Deschutes during winter months.

Riverhouse Run

This is a local favorite because it's so close to town with excellent scenery and challenging waters. This is a great place for paddlers to practice skills over and over without too much shuttling effort. This run starts behind its namesake, the Riverhouse Hotel and Convention Center, and flows down to Tumalo State Park.

"I look forward to October when this run comes in because it indicates a change of season," said Geoff Frank, owner of Tumalo Creek Kayak and Canoe. "Winter is right around the corner. You tend to get cravings for runs you can't do all the time." Frank especially likes paddling "up to some cool rapids" at the place where Tumalo Creek flows into the Deschutes.

Middle Deschutes

This section of the river starts at Steelhead Falls and ends at Lake Billy Chinook and is considered a Class 4+ because the Deschutes flows through an isolated canyon and evacuations are a challenge.

"The Middle D is a quintessential paddling experience," said Alex Templar, owner of Current Experiences, one of Central Oregon's whitewater kayaking schools. "There are continuous pool drops and rapids, and you won't see another group of boaters out there this time of year."

Fall/winter whitewater instruction and pool sessions

Current Experiences continues their instructional programs throughout the fall/winter months. They teach pool classes in Redmond every Sunday from 4 - 6 p.m. for $20 with a free shuttle service from Bend. Current instructors will be on hand to help paddlers learn everything from a basic roll technique to more advanced playboating skills.

Current also organizes kayaking clubs for kids and adults. The program is $50 a month and includes four pool sessions, and two days out on the river.

"We are creating an environment for people to learn how to paddle from professionals at a reasonable price," Templar said. "We utilize fast-paced instruction with a comfortable environment."

Learn more about Current Experiences and their upcoming programs by visiting their website at www.currentexperiences.com.

Beginning October 3rd, and running through end of May, Juniper Swim and Fitness offers open pool sessions for kayakers every Sunday from 4:15 to 6 p.m. for $8 per session. Paddlers must provide all their own equipment. Rentals are available from Tumalo Creek Kayak & Canoe: www.tumalocreek.com.

About The Author

Laurel Brauns

Laurel has toured the national coffeehouse circuit as a singer-songwriter and spent years buried in psychology books to earn her (in-progress) PhD. She was rescued from both artistic and academic obscurity by The Source Weekly where she loves telling stories about the people who make this community a better place...
Pin It


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

Today | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri
Peninsula Hike: Past, Present and Future

Peninsula Hike: Past, Present and Future - Peninsula Road North of Crooked River Ranch

Thu., Oct. 29, 8 a.m.
Submitting an event is free and easy.

Newsletter Signup

Get Central Oregon daily news
directly in your inbox

Get Social

Latest in Outside Features

  • Glacier Funeral

    • Oct 21, 2020
    After commemorating the loss of Clark Glacier, the Oregon Glaciers Institute looks ahead at what's to come More »
  • "With Spirit" Debuts at BendFilm

    • Oct 7, 2020
    Following locals Chelsey and Jason Magness, the film tells a story of love, loss and life through the lens of adventure racing More »
  • Seeing the Forest for the Trees

    • Sep 30, 2020
    Worthy Brewing to host the Forest Revival Concert to see more trees planted and forests restored More »
  • More »

Give Guide

View Online

More by Laurel Brauns

  • Listen: Rivers Need Water with Tod Heisler 🎧

    Listen: Rivers Need Water with Tod Heisler 🎧

    Central Oregon LandWatch's rivers conservation director talks about the organization's efforts to restore the Deschutes River to its historic flows
    • Oct 17, 2020
  • Rescuing Animals Out of the Ashes

    Rescuing Animals Out of the Ashes

    Behind the scenes with Central Oregon's Pet Evacuation Team, which cared for dozens of pets from the recent fire zones
    • Oct 14, 2020
  • Are Essential Oils Safe for Pets?

    Are Essential Oils Safe for Pets?

    Diluted essential oils can help with pets' emotional issues, as well as preventing some airborne illness, local holistic veterinarian says
    • Oct 14, 2020
  • More »

Want to advertise with us?

For info on print and digital advertising, >> Click Here

© 2020 LAY IT OUT INC | 704 NW GEORGIA AVE, BEND, OREGON 97703  |   Privacy Policy

Website powered by Foundation