The Wild and Scenic Rogue River in Southern Oregon has been a popular fishing destination since the very early 20th century. It has been a sought out destination by A-list celebrities, past Presidents, and was even the home of the famous author, Zane Gray. This incredibly scenic trip happens on the protected section of the Rogue River which is home to significant amounts of diverse wildlife and ample amounts of both returning adult steelhead and the famous “half-pounder” run. Fishing from a drift boat on a fly can include catching many of both and on a good trip, usually includes fresh Steelhead for lunch.
This is a 4-day lodge to lodge fishing trip where you will load into a drift boat on day one and 4-days later exit your drift boat having traveled almost 60 miles downstream, having seen some of Oregon’s most incredible scenery, floating through class II and III whitewater, stayed in three historic riverside fishing lodges and ideally netted a good number of fish. This is a trip simply un-like any other, perfect for bonding with kids, sharing a vacation with friends, having a fishy vacation with your less fishing passionate spouse or getting together with co-workers.
Trips on the Wild and Scenic Rogue River happen from August through the end of October and these trips do fill up so we advise booking early!
These trips are provided by our partner Briggs Rogue River Guide Service. Briggs has been offering guided fishing trips on the Rogue River since the mid-1930’s.
Trip at a glance
This trip is great for both the avid angler and the novice or less passionate.
Dates / Rates
Trips meet at Orange Torpedo Trips and Briggs Rogue River Trips headquarters in Merlin Oregon.
These trips are provided by Briggs Rogue River Trips which are a partner of Sun Valley Outfitters through Revelry Outdoors.
210 Merlin Rd.
We can also pick you up at any Grants Pass area hotel around 7:30 am. Just let us know ahead of time.
Rogue River Fishing Trip - Trip Itinerary
Day 1 -
8:00 AM, Meet at our shop in Merlin Oregon. Your car will be parked in our gated lot for the remainder of the fishing trip on the Rogue River.
At our shop you will re-pack your luggage for the trip into our supplied dry-bag. This provided dry-bag is where everything for the trip goes. At the shop we go through a quick orientation to help prepare you for the Rogue River fishing trip and make sure you have all of the information and gear you need before loading into our van for the 15 minute ride down to the put-in.
9:00 am, Launch from Almeda Bar and start fishing. The first 4 miles of the trip includes some fun class II and II+ rapids mixed with often productive fishing holes. After about 90 minutes we will arrive at Grave Creek which is a good outhouse stop if anyone needs to quickly use a pit-toilet before the PFD’s go on and the class III whitewater begins. Upper and Lower Grave Creek are thrilling class III rapids with the second being a small water-fall like rapid which is an exciting ride in the drift boat. After these rapids some good fishing begins again before the quick push down to Raine Falls.
At Raine Falls passengers un-load the boats for a quick walk around the 10 ft tall class V waterfall while the guides lower their drift boats through the fish-ladder around the falls with ropes. This is a scenic Rogue River spot and fun to watch the guides work their boats down the narrow chute. Not far below loading back in we will pull over for our riverside picnic style lunch will include multiple salads, snacks and sandwich options.
Post lunch some more classic Rogue River fishing leads into the final miles of whitewater down to the lodge. This section has back to back class II and III rapids including Slim Pickings where the boats slide through tight channel only inches wider than the boats themselves and the fun Upper Black Bar falls. Between rapids some good Salmon Fishing and pockets of Steelhead can be found. In the early evening the drift boats float into Blackbar Lodge where a hot shower awaits before your evening beverages lead into general revelry and dinner. After dinner, partake with your friends in games of cards before heading back to your cabin for a great night of sleep as you prepare for another day of fishing on the famous Wild and Scenic Rogue River.
Day 2 -
After a hearty breakfast at the lodge we load back into the boats for a GREAT day of guided fishing. Usually today is where things really start to take off with great fishing most of the day. Today also includes a wonderful ride down through Kelsey Canyon, a beautiful bedrock gorge with incredible scenery. At lunch today, if things have gone well, the group will enjoy their first lunch of fresh Steelhead and maybe a Salmon. The afternoon is more great Rogue River fishing leading up to our night at Marial Lodge.
Day 3 -
Start off today with the most action packed, and arguably the most scenic, portion of the Rogue River trip with a ride through mule creek canyon. Through this vertical wall gorge the river picks up pace before coming to it’s choke point at the bottom of a spot called the coffee pot, where the entire Rogue River condenses down to being 12 feet wide. The drift boat ride through here is a combination of excitement and jaw dropping scenery. As the canyon begins to widen we push down to Blossom Bar where riders will un-load and walk around the class IV boulder garden while the guides skillfully nagivate their drift-boats through the Rogue River’s most notorious rapid. It can be fun during the walk around to stop and watch the guides run their boats through.
Below the rapid guests will meet back up with the guide who has loaded a small outboard motor on the back of the boat. From here on the majority of the trip is either fishing or motoring down river to the next great fishing hole, ultimately meaning more fishing time. Often the best fishing of the trip is found in these lower canyons. In the early evening, after a hopefully productive day of fishing, the group will float up to Lucas Lodge where a delicious Prime Rib dinner is waiting.
Day 4 -
The final day of fishing on the Rogue River is often some of the best. Journey downstream another 15 miles through scenic gorges like cougar canyon where incredible angling of every type awaits. In the early afternoon we will arrive at Quosatana Creek where the floating portion of our trip concludes. Here we load into our van for a 3 hour drive back to our shop in Merlin Oregon. You can also choose to have you car shuttled to Q Creek if you want to drive back yourself or head out to the coast on your drive. If you want to do this just let us know. There is a $150 fee for the shuttle. Another option here is to book a private flight out of Gold Beach back to the Grants Pass or Medford Airport. Doing this helps avoid the 3 hour drive and is a great option. Just call us for details.
The Wild and Scenic Rogue River fishing trip is more than just another fishing adventure. The combination of the historic lodges, the world-class whitewater and the famous fishing make this trip something entire unique and a trip that will become your new favorite escape.
Where to Meet
Orange Torpedo Trips
210 Merlin Rd. Merlin, OR. 97532
Take exit 61 off of Interstate 5. Exit is approx. 3 miles north of Grants Pass. At exit turn left (west) and follow Merlin Rd 3.2 miles until you see Orange Torpedo Trips on right. We have a secure fenced parking lot where your car can be stored during your trip.
Plan on meeting us at 8:00 AM. Due to the early hour of the day we strongly recommend staying locally the night before your trip. Here are a few of the local accommodations in the Grants Pass area. We are happy to pick you up at any Grants Pass area hotel if you let us know ahead of time.
- Redwood Motel Grants Pass Oregon 888-535-8824 (recommended)
- Magnolia Inn 541-899-0255 (Great B&B in Historic Jacksonville)
- Bybee Historic Inn Jacksonville Oregon 877-292-3374
- Holiday Inn Express Grants Pass Oregon 541-471-6144
- Flery Manor Grants Pass Oregon 541-476-3591 (Award Winning)
- Shiloh Inn Grants Pass Oregon 541-479-8391
- La Quinta Inn Grants Pass Oregon 541-472-1808
The closest commercial airport is in Medford, Oregon (airport code MFR), 34 miles southeast of our shop in Merlin. In the Medford Airport there are four car rental companies (Budget, Avis, National, Enterprise, and Hertz). At this time we do not offer transportation to or from the airport, but we can pickup and drop off at any Grants Pass Hotel the morning of a trip and at the conclusion of a trip. If you plan to not rent a car, you can call Double D Shuttles at 541-476-7773 and hire them to transport you from the Medford Airport to a Grants Pass Hotel. Please note: Our trips return too late in the day for us to ensure you will make a flight out of Medford same day. We suggest making reservations for the next day after the trip concludes.
We have 20 LBS per person packing list. If you would like to bring more weight please just let us know. You can bring an additional 25LBS per person for $200 per boat.
We supply limited amounts of alcohol. Roughly 3 beers and a couple glasses of wine per person. If you would like to bring additional beverages please just let us know. Weight over the 20lbs will be subject to additional fees.
Suggested Packing List
- 1 pair of comfortable shoes for the lodge
- 1 pair of rubber boots or dry footwear for boating
- 2 pairs of long pants
- 2 long sleeve shirts
- 2 pair of shorts or swimsuit
- 1 warm jacket
- 1 pair of long underware
- 1 set of full rain gear
- Sunglasses with chums or croakies
- Flashlight or headlamp
- Insect repellent
- Personal hygiene items
- Current Oregon Fishing License with Salmon/Steelhead Tag. Please purchase by the day before your trip.
- Additional beverages