Michael Hughes: The Oywhee River came onto my radar when I first moved to Oregon in 2010. I had heard stories of deep canyons, sweeping desert landscapes, and a remote river with weather that changes faster than the scenery. After a drought and a couple years of low snowpack and rain I finally got on the river. We showed up to Rome late in the afternoon, rigged, and floated downstream as the sun went down. The following days were solid gray overcast but warm with a river and tall canyon walls all the our selves. Night three gifted us a spectacular lightening show, with high winds, and a hailstorm that left the ground covered in a blanket in pea sized ice balls. The storm only last about 20 minutes, but gave us a good story. I always think back to the first trip down the Oywhee when the weather turns bad. I watch the snowpack throughout the winter and keep a close eye on what is happening down in the Owyhee Canyonlands.
OwSR No. 16: Owyhee River
- 70 miles of the Owyhee River are also designated as Oregon State Scenic Waterway
- Contains exposed basalt, rhyolite, sedimentary rocks, young lava, and alluvial deposits
- Diverse habitat for over 200 species of wildlife
Hike Out Camp on the Owyhee River | Photo: Michael Hughes
Celebrated by Emily Little, Brodie Sullivan, Michael Hughes, Courtney Donald, Kristen Bryson and guests on a five day Northwest Rafting Company trip from Rome to Birch Creek that started on May 10, 2017.