These rafting trips take you through the heart of Hells Canyon which straddles the border between Idaho and Oregon. You will run most of the major rapids, and travel through the deepest section of Hells Canyon. A 4-day trip allows you to spend one extra day enjoying the canyon, hiking and fishing. Transportation from Cambridge, Idaho to the river and back to Cambridge is included. Boise, ID is the closest airport to fly in and out of.
The Day Before
Travel to Cambridge, ID. A representative from HCR will meet you at 7PM Mountain Time, at the Frontier Motel, for a brief orientation. Watertight bags and containers will be distributed. You will have a chance to answer last minute questions. Dinner is on you own.
Stroll down the street to a HCR hosted breakfast at Bucky’s Café. Arrive at breakfast by 6:30AM. After breakfast we depart from the hotel by 8:00AM to the launch site in Hells Canyon. The guides have the boats ready to go. After a short safety orientation we finish strapping down our gear and launch for the trip of a lifetime. The day is spent running rapids, a short hike to the old Barton Family Homestead. There is time for fishing from the boats, at lunch, and also when we arrive at camp. We bring all the gear to fish with.
Each day we stop for a riverside lunch break around noon. This is a great time to get to know the other guides and guests, fish a little, and usually we take a short hike.
We arrive in camp around 4-5:00. You walk up into camp to find your tents set and your gear bags packed up. There is time for relaxing, hiking, fishing, or reading a book from our Hells Canyon Raft Library.
Hors d’ oeuvres are served around 6ish, and dinner around 7:30. After dinner and a Dutch Oven desert there is time around the campfire to tell stories of conquered rapids, fish tails or roasting s’mores. The stars start to appear, inviting conversations with old and new friends. Soon it is time to wander off to your tent and bed.
You arise to the aroma of fresh coffee and sizzling bacon. Breakfast is served around 7:30 or 8:00. While the guides clean up the kitchen and other gear there is time to pack your personal gear. We will come around and take down your tents, as they are cleaned out. We usually get on the river about the same time the sun peaks over the canyon rim. Hells Canyon is the deepest gorge in North America, so it is about 9:30 before we see sun on the water. Today we run the two largest rapids on the river; Wildsheep and Granite Creek. A quick scout at each provides a view of the excitement to come, and a chance for the paddle boat and kayakers to receive last minute instructions. We will also explore ancient Indian Pictographs, and another abandoned homestead at Bernard Creek. The McGaffee Family lived at Bernard creek from 1905 into the late 30s. Check out their Hells Canyon wallpaper made from old Saturday Evening Post magazines.
After lunch and maybe some sturgeon fishing we cruise through some smaller rapids and calm water. This is a great time to try out the inflatable kayaks. We arrive in camp around 4:30. Our camp tonight has a fantastic view of “Suicide Point”, which is tomorrow morning’s hike. Suicide Point, like all other named places in Hells Canyon, has a great story, but you have to hike to hear it.
Today after breakfast you pack your personal gear and we hike the Trail to Suicide Point during the cool of the morning. Some of the guides will lead the hike others will stay back to pack the boats. Kirkwood Historic Ranch is also on the agenda today. This was the home of former Idaho Governor and Senator Len Jordan. The Jordan family lived here during The Great Depression. Grace Jordan, Len’s wife, is the author of “Home Below Hells Canyon.”
We have our last lunch on a huge beach, and soon after we arrive at Pittsburg Landing. Transportation is provided back to Cambridge. You can also opt to pay for a vehicle shuttle from Cambridge to Pittsburg Landing.
The 4th Day
If you opt to extend the trip to a 4th day, which is highly recommended; the above itinerary will be stretched to fit. There is more time for fishing, lounging on a beach, sleeping in, longer hikes, and exploring all that Hells Canyon has to offer. It also gives you one more night to look up at the stars.
4-day trips to Pittsburg Landing – 34 Miles
Boise, ID is the closest major airport to Cambridge, ID. We meet for the trip in Cambridge at 7PM Mountain Time. It is easiest to rent a car in Boise and travel 2 hours to Cambridge.
Driving Directions from Boise to Cambridge:
Take I-84 West, Fruitland/HWY 95, Exit 3 to Cambridge (about 50 minutes after you leave I-84.)
Driving Directions from Baker City, OR to Cambridge:
Take I-84 East for 49 miles to Hwy. 201, Exit 356. Turn left onto Weiser Spur/US-95 Spur N. Continue to follow US-95 Spur N (Crossing into Idaho). Follow signs to US 95 North takes you through the town of Weiser, ID. Take Hwy 95 North 45 minutes to Cambridge.
While you are on the trip your car can safely stay at the hotel in Cambridge. We include transportation from Cambridge to the river, and back to Cambridge at the end of the trip.
Luggage can be stored in your vehicle. If you have valuables that you do not want to leave in your vehicle we are happy to store them at the HCR office.
There is also an option to have your car shuttled from Cambridge to Pittsburg Landing for an additional charge.
Book your Trips online
Deposit per booking, what you pay now: Adult/Child » $400 Trip Cost per booking: Adult » $1290, Child » $1115
Trips can be tentatively reserved for 7 days. Reservations are confirmed upon a receipt of a deposit. We accept deposits by check, money order, Visa, and/or MasterCard. When we receive your completed reservation form and deposit we will send your confirmation receipt, a detailed packing list, and travel information. Reservation forms may be filled out online on our website or simply call us.
The balance is due 45 days prior to the launch date of your trip. If final payment is not received when due, we reserve the right to regard the reservation canceled.
If you find it necessary to cancel your trip, please notify us as soon as possible. You will be given a refund less the deposit if you cancel 45 days prior to departure. If cancellations are made on or after the final payment due date, no money will be refunded unless we fill the trip. In that case we will refund your payment less the deposit amount. You are welcome to find a replacement for yourself.
We recommend you consider purchasing trip insurance.