Boater's Guide Map 5 Feature Descriptions

*Identifies major rapids of Class III and above.

[ North map | South map ]

212.0 McCarty Creek
Difficult landing, no water; medium group.

212.4 Davis Creek
Good landing, no water; medium group.

213.0 Geology Note: Pillow Basalt
From mile 213-209, the river cuts through thick deposits of pillow basalt and breccia. These rocks formed on the sides of a giant undersea volcano about 230 million years ago.

213.0 Historical Notes: Proposed Pleasant Valley Dam, 1954
A 1954 proposal sited Pleasant Valley Dam about 1/4 mile below the creek. The dam, 535' high with the world's 5 largest generators, would have backed up water to the base of Hells Canyon Dam. Yellow paint on bluffs on both sides indicate the darn's proposed location and height.

213.3 Pleasant Valley
Boat landing very difficult at some water levels. Shade, water 150 yards upstream from camp; medium group. Accessible via off-road vehicle trail from Pittsburg Landing.

213.5 *Pleasant Valley Rapids
Class II or III, depending on water level. Rocks above rapids, turbulent water. 214.5 Pittsburg Campground Campground, 28 sites, about 1/4 mile from river, some shade, no water, toilet, table, some accessible sites for people with disabilities.

214.7 Geology Note: Mt. Mazama Ash
The layer of whitish sediment in the outcrop on the Oregon side is ash that was deposited about 6,800 years ago, when a huge volcanic eruption over 200 miles southwest of here blew up Mt. Mazarna, forming Crater Lake. Rainfall washed the ash into depressions where it was concentrated in deposits from several inches to several feet deep.

214.8 Pittsburg Administrative Site
Administrative site, not available for carnping. Communications available here; report fires and emergencies here or at Pittsburg Landing boat ramp when staffed.

214.9 Pittsburg Landing
Road access, boat launch and float apron, visitor information and toilets. Communications available here; report fires and emergencies here or at Pittsburg Administrative Site.

215.7 Wilson Eddy
Good landing, shade, no water; large group.

216.2 Campsite
Road access, good float boat landing, shade, no water; small group.

216.3 Upper Pittsburg
Six campsites, road access, parking, tables, toilets, partially accessible for people with disabilities, some shade, no water.

216.3 Geology and Historical Notes: Pittsburg Landing
The large valley at Pittsburg Landing, cuts through easily-eroded sedimentary rocks about 220-165 million years old. About 15 million years ago, volcanic eruptions from fissure dikes formed the dark brown layers of Columbia River Basalt on the north skyline. Native Americans wintered here for thousands of years, including Toohoolhoolzote's Nez Perce band from about 1840-1870. Homesteaders and ranchers began to settle here in the 1880s.

216.3 Wild and Scenic River Boundary
Under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, the river north of this point is classified as scenic, south of the line is wild.

216.4 Fish Trap Bar
Sandy beach, good landing, no water; large group.

217.0 Corral Creek
Cobble beach, shade, water updver 200 yards; large group. 

218.3 Cat Gulch
Easy landing, small beach, shade; medium group.

218.8 Kirby Creek Lodge
Privately owned land, lodge; not available for camping.

218.9 Middle Kirby Rapids
Class II or III, depending on water level. Large roller coaster waves.

219.6 Russell Bar
Fair landing for rafts, poor landing for powerboats. Shade, no water; large group.

220.0 Yankee Bar
Beach, no water, little shade; small group.

220.3 Kirkwood Bar Campsites
Four sites within easy walking distance of Kirkwood Historic Ranch. Shade, toilets, tables; large group at each site.

220.7 Historical Note. Kirkwood Ranch
Although people have lived on Kirkwood Bar since prehistoric times, the most famous resident was Len Jordan (1932-43), who later became Governor of Idaho and a U.S. Senator. His wife, Grace, wrote Home Below Hells Canyon about her family's years at Kirkwood Ranch.

220.7 Kirkwood Historic Ranch
Public welcome: historic ranch, museum, interpretive site, staffed year-round. No drinking water available. May also be accessed by an off-road vehicle trail down Kirkwood Creek. Communications available to report fires/emergencies.

221.0 Slaughter Gulch
Good landing; large group.

221.6 Historical Note: Half Moon's Death
Named for a Nez Perce man. Half Moon and his horse fell to their deaths near Suicide Point, probably in the 1870s. An 1866 silver dollar was found with the remains in 1892.

221.6 Half Moon Bar
Easy landing, small site, no water; medium group.

222.0 Gracie Bar
Good floatboat landing, shade; large group.

222.2 Two Corral Creek
Beach, shade, no water; large group.

222.6 Salt Creek
Beach, shade, water at Salt Creek; large group.

222.8 Suicide Point
Trail carved in cliffs over 400 feet above river offers a spectacular view- worth the climb!

222.9 Hominy Bar
Good landing for float or powerboats; large group at low water levels.

223.0 Geology Note.- Vertical Dikes
From Suicide Point to Pittsburg Landing, the river cuts through nearly verti- cal dikes which are the oldest rocks in Hells Canyon-over 300 million years old. The Great Eastern Mine (gold and copper) was located on the slope at the lower end of Big Bar.

223.7 Historical Note: Temperance Creek Ranch
In the early 1880s, Alex and Bob Warnock came to Temperance Creek to do some placer mining and raise cattle. When the packhorse carrying their supply of whiskey rolled on the trail, they were left high and dry for the winter, hence the name "Temperance Creek." Purchased by Kenneth Johnson in the 1930s and operated as a sheep ranch by Kenneth and later his son, Greg, until the late 1970s.

223.7 Temperance Creek Ranch
Former sheep ranch; not available for camping.

224.2 Big Bar Airstrip
Only public landing strip on Idaho side of river, not maintained; public use at own risk.

224.5 Big Bar
Fair powerboat landing, rocky. No shade, no water; large group.

224.5 Historical Note: Myers Creek
In the 1930s, blacksmith/miner Ace Duncan was hired to drive a tunnel through the ridge that separates Myers Creek from Big Bar. Working from both sides of the ridge, it took 81-year-old Duncan two years to complete the tunnel. An irrigation pipe through the tunnel allowed upper Big Bar to be planted with 13 acres of alfalfa.

224.5 Dry Gulch
Shade, beach, no water; large group.