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Guide to Oregon's Kayaking


Rafting Kayaking Rivers


There are numerous opportunities to Kayak in Oregon. Listed below are organizations which offer guided tours of some of the most popular places to kayak as well as offering lessons for beginners. Some of these places are right in the Portland area or a short drive from Portland. Some of the sites you might want to look at if you are planning a short vacation to Eastern or Southern Oregon.

Alder Creek Kayak and Canoe offers lessons, trips, and races as well sells all paddle sports equipment. Portland - Jantzen Beach: 503.285.0464, Portland - Boathouse: 503.285.1819

All Star Guided River Trips and Raft Rentals

Columbia Gorge Kayaking School is located in Hood River and offer schols and guided kayak tours. 541.806.4190

Columbia River Kayaking offers Sea Kayaking on the Lower Columbia River

Kokopelli River Guide offer trips around Ashland. 1-866-723-8874.

Legendary River Trips on the Salmon River in Idaho and the Rogue River in Oregon.

eNRG Kayaking offer lessons and tours.

Gorge Paddling offer whitewater kayaking instruction. 541-490-9404 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

The Kayak Shack is located on the coast in Waldport.

Kayak Tillamook Country offer tours in Tillamook County.

Kokopelli River Center offer lessons and trips in Southern Oregon.

Lower Columbia Canoe Club is based in Portland and offers a year-round schedule of paddling opportunities.

Mt Hood Adventure offer tours and rentals all year.

Orange Torpedo Trips offer adventures on the Rogue River, Salmon River, Klamath River, and North Umpqua River.

Oregon by Kayak offer trips on Oregon's Coast. 541-729-2436

Oregon Kayak & Canoe Club organize river trips at various skill levels.

Oregon Ocean Paddling Society offer sea kayak activities and trips.

Portland, Oregon's Waterfront Kayak Shop offers instruction, rentals, tours, and special events.

Scappoose Bay Kayaking offer special cruises, kayak rentals, and guided tours.

Sundance Kayak School offer trips on the Rogue River. 541-386-1725.

Willamette Kayak and Canoe Club offer practice, events, and trips.

The following are places people had offered online as places they have tried kayaking.
Alsea Bay & Alsea River in Waldport has excellent launching beach at the visitors center, south end of bridge, Highway 1. It is reported to have easy paddling as far as you want to go. From Portland go South on Interstate 5 to Covallis, OR then take Highway 34 to Waldport.

Alton Baker Canal is a 2 mile canal only about 3-4 feet deep. The canal is stocked with trout and there is about a 1 knot current. Drive to the UO stadium "Autzen Stadium" on MLK jr. drive. Take Leo Harris Parkway to the front of the stadium and right. There is a dirt lot and a sign for canoe launch, day use only.

Big Cliff Lake is located downstream of the larger Detroit lake. This lake is relatively narrow, with beautiful scenery, clear water and the plenty of wildlife.

Lake Olallie has numerous small inlets and coves with ducks and other wildlife and no motor boats are allowed. It is close to Detroit Lake. The water is crystal clear so you can see the bottom in most places. It is a 13 mile drive off the main road.

Devils Lake (D-Lake) is in the middle of Lincoln City. There is access to the lake at Regatta Park which is free or you can camp at Devil's Lake State Park and there are also launching site within the state park.

Elk Lake is North East of Detroit Lake and offer clean water. From Salem take Hwy 22 East. From Hwy 22 at Detroit, turn onto Breitenbush Road #46. Proceed 4.5 miles, turn left onto FS road 4696. Proceed 0.7 miles, turn left on FS road 4697. Follow FS road 4697 for 9.5 miles, turn left onto small spur road located at west end of Elk Lake. The camping area is about 0.4 miles ahead. CAUTION: FS road 4697 is not maintained for the last 2 miles into Elk Lake. Access by low-clearance vehicles and trailers is not recommended as the road is rough and rocky.

Henry Hagg Lake is a man made lake close to Forest Grove. There is a section of the lake marked as a no wave zone otherwise you will be dealing with motor boats. You may rent canoes and kayaks at one of the launching sites.

Hood River (east fork) was rated moderate to difficult with a lot of white water. You can put in at Copper Dam, Tucker Bridge or higher.

Hosmer Lake is a beautiful body of water with excellent fishing and good wildlife viewing. Cold, clear canals open to flatwater with islands is surrounded by reeds and full of water lilies. It has an inlet that allows you to go upstream to a small waterfall. There is also a camping area that allows tents or small RVs. Head up to the Cascade Lakes Highway out of Bend, Oregon past the ski resort and keep going beyond Devil's Lake.

John Day River offers many day trips and shuttle service. You can find many different level of rapids so you will want to check with a guide or guide book to make sure you are comfortable with your journey. You will find breathtaking views but not a lot of help if you get into trouble. The nearest city is Bend.