Boating Guide Map 3 Feature Descriptions

*Identifies major rapids of Class III and above.

[ North map | South map ]

226.2 Lower Quartz Creek
Good landing, no water, some shade; large group. Located below Quartz Creek.

226.5 Upper Quartz Creek
Rocky landing, poor powerboat site. No water, little shade; large group. Located above Quartz Creek.

227.0 Geology Note: High Bar
High bar is the result of a catastrophic landslide, followed by the formation of a large gravel bar during the Bonneville Flood, about 15,000 years ago.

227.5 Geology and Historical Notes. Pine Bar
The yellow-stained rocks mark a mineralized zone along a fault called a "Deeply weathered parts of the gossan form alurn deposits. Floyd Gossan Harvey, early outfitter, boated his Hells Canyon Excursions guests to a camp at this site in the 1960s. The main lodge and six tent cabins were burned by an arsonist in 1974.

227.5 Pine Bar
Beach, shade, water. Located below Willow Creek; large group.

227.9 Sand Creek
Administrative cabin used by ID and OR fish and wildlife agencies and OR State Police.

228.0 Historical Note: McGrady's Lodge
Kyle McGrady, early Snake River rnailboat captain, operated a lodge here in the late 1940s that accomodated 50 people.

226.2 Upper Sand Creek
Poor powerboat landing. No shade or water; medium group.

226.6 Geology Note: Dry Diggins View
Dry Diggins Ridge on the Idaho side, elevation 7,828 feet, is the highest point in Hells Canyon that is visible from the river on the ID side. It is 6,400 feet above the waters of the Snake.

226.6 Historical Note: Eagle's Nest
The river trail originally climbed over the rim below Yreka Creek, then back down to Sand Creek. During the winter of 1947-48, a Forest Service crew cut through the rock overhang above the river, creating the stretch of trail known as the " Eagle's Nest" because there was once an eagle's nest above the trail.

226.6 Yreka Bar
Poor landing. Shade, no water; large group.

229.0 Steep Creek
Low-water campsite. Beach, good landing below creek; medium group.

229.3 Historical Note: Sheep Creek Cabin
Homesteaded in 1884 by William McLeod, a Scotsman and Civil War veter- an. After his death, the county sold the place to Fred and Billy McGaffee, who traded it to Lenora Barton for her place on the lmnaha River in 1 935. Sold to Bud Wilson in 1952, then to the FS in the 1970s.

229.4 Sheep Creek
Fair landing; pull in at creek. Camp is on upriver side of creek; Cabin on bench north of creek is occupied under special use permit. Shade, water; large group.

229.6 *Sheep Creek Rapids
Class 11 to III; some rocks to avoid.

229.9 Johnson Bar Landing
Beach, water available at Sheep Creek; large group.

231.4 Geology Note: Rush Creek Rapids and Hat Point
Rush Creek Rapids was formed by a large landslide that dammed the Snake River to a depth of nearly 400 feet. Rocks were dislodged from the Idaho side nearly 2,000 feet above the river. Hat Point Lookout Tower, perched atop the highest point on the Oregon rim of Hells Canyon (eleva- tion: 6,982 feet), can be seen on the horizon above Rush Creek.

231.4 Rush Creek
Marginal landing located downstream from rapid; rocky beach. Water dries up in summer; large group.

231.4 *Rush Creek Rapids
Class III or IV, depending on flows; more turbulent during higher water. At head of rapids, near center of river, a large rock creates a huge hole with much turbulence at all flows. Rush Creek is marked by a large rock near the bottom of the rapid that is highly visible except during extremely high water. Always scout!

231.7 Sluice Creek Rapids
No scouting necessary; large roller coaster waves.

231.8 Historical Note.- Winniford Place
Among the oldest ranches in the canyon, Alex Warnock ran cattle here in the early 1 880s. Clem Marks patented a homestead entry in 1909 and built a dogtrot-style log cabin-twin cabins connected by a covered breezeway. Willy Winniford's family settled here from 1913-23; his brothers, Walter and John, settled at Rush Creek and Homestead Ridge.

231.8 Sluice Creek
Difficult landing. Very difficult climb to bench located on downriver side of creek; large group.

233.2 Bills Creek Rapids
Class 11 or III, roller coaster waves.

233.7 *Waterspout Rapids
Class III to IV, depending on flows. A rock at lower end of rapids near Oregon side of center creates an unexpected hole at some levels. The rapids wash out in high water. Scouting recommended from Oregon side.

234.5 Geology Note: Waterspout Landslide
From here to Waterspout Rapids, note the chaotic rocks on the Oregon side. They are from a giant slump or landslide that filled the canyon to a depth of 200 to 300 feet.

235.0 *Lower Bernard Creek Rapids
Class III to IV, depending on flow. Approximately 300 yards below Upper Bernard site. About an 3 foot drop, steep but not vertical; big standing wave about 6 feet high in low flows; washed out in high flows.

235.1 Bernard Creek
Good landing for rafts downstream from creek on gravel beach; not a good powerboat site. Shade, water, hike up trail 1 00 yards; capacity large.

235.2 Historical Note: MeGaffee Cabin
The cabin, on the bar above the river, was the second one built on the site by Bill Hiltsley, who homesteaded here in 1901. The place was sold to Fred and lphigenia "Gene" McGaffee and Billy McGaffee in 1915. Gene wrote, "We knew we were getting into a lonely, untamed region, but it was good cow country and we never regretted the move." See photo on page 13.

235.2 *Upper Bernard Creek Rapids
Class II to IIIn at all flows. Depending on skill level, you may want to scout. Located below Bernard Creek.

236.2 Historical Note. Saddle Creek
Originally settled in 1895 by Fred Jensen and Tim McCarty, Saddle Creek was the home of the Pete Wilson family from 1916-1937. Violet Wilson Shirley and her 7 brothers and sisters grew up here. Violet has been a volunteer host at the Kirkwood Historic Ranch for many years.

236.2 Saddle Creek
Difficult landing at flows over 30,000 cfs; tie up downstream of creek. Water, shade on upper bench to the north; large group.

236.6 Hastings
Gravel beach in low water; old placer mine; medium group.