Trip Report: 2014 President's Day Rogueschutes Trip
2014 President's Day Rogueschutes Trip
Submitted by Rick Carman for the 2014 March OWA Newsletter
The annual OWA Rogue Trip was getting ready to roll in early February with a launch date of February 15. The trip was supposedly capped at 45 but I hear 47 ultimately signed up. First time trip leader Steve Olsund did a fine job herding cats to get things organized. There was concern about the amount of water in, or not in, the Rogue due to the very dry weather. We watched the gauge bounce around the mid to high teens, low but enough. Many years ago I was on a summer trip at 970 cfs. It was bony. We all took the guide chute, but the falls is actually doable at very low flows.
Then, just a few days before our Friday departure the forecast changed dramatically. Several very wet storms were due to roll in and the forecast for Sunday shot up to around 30,000 feet! My daughter Jenifer had run the Rogue at 30k as her guide school graduation float so I gave her a call. Two words: DON’T GO! She said the rapids were washed out and replaced by huge whirlpools, the water was dangerously fast and camp spots were all under water. They had one person in their sweep boat whose job was to sit on the back of the boat looking upstream for logs bearing down on them so they would have time to get out of the way before they got run over. I passed this info on to Steve and I am sure many other folks chimed in. Steve wisely decided to fight another day. Steve made the right call and shifted the trip to the Deschutes. The Deschutes in February: what could possibly go wrong?