For More Info Call:  503-946-3404

Oregon River Rafting for Veterans

The next bend in the river
Learning hydrology
Rowing a big rig

Course Details

    Location: Oregon
    Activities: Rafting
    Tuition & Fees: $ 0
    Financial Aid Available: Yes

Each section of river on this course is a beautiful and introductory experience in rafting. Students will travel on the river in four to six-person paddle rafts, and learn to “captain” (maneuver) their paddle raft team through Class II to IV rapids. You don’t need to have previous rafting experience. We will teach you everything you need to know to travel comfortably including how to pack appropriately, load a raft, set up tarps, paddle in a raft, and navigate the river.

Available Courses

  • Available DatesCourse LengthAgeCourse Number
    8/25/2016 - 8/30/20166 daysWOVR-621Reserve Your Spot TodayLearn More

  • Questions? Call (503) 946-3404 for more information.

How to Enroll

Steps to becoming a Northwest Outward Bound course paricipant:
Step one: Complete the online enrollment by clicking on Reserve Your Spot Today (above), or call to enroll (1-866-467-7651 or 503-946-3404 option 3).
Step two: You will receive a personalized Registration E-Mail from your Course Advisor within 48 hours.
Step three: Complete the paperwork that we have directed you to on this website.
Step four: We may need a couple of weeks to review your enrollment packet and approve your participation.

Enrollment Packet & Course Information

Enrollment Packet Deadline Policy: All veterans must adhere to the due dates listed in the Registration E-Mail. If you are unable to meet the requested deadlines, please be sure to contact your This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Otherwise, your spot on the course will be opened up to another student.

Veterans Application

Physician Exam Form

Admission & Cancellation Policy

Note: Supplemental Forms may apply if we need more specific information about you. Refer to your Registration e-mail to determine which supplemental forms are required for your enrollment packet.

This section contains details that are key to the specific course you have enrolled on. This information will come in handy when packing, planning, and preparing for the adventure you have chosen. Please read these documents CAREFULLY and contact your This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any questions.

Course Description - 6 days - Rafting

Gear & Footwear - 6 days - Rafting

Travel - 6 days - Rafting

Attending Outward Bound

Course Preparation & Physical Fitness

Information on Completing & Returning Forms

Course Description

After joining your group in your appropriate location, you will travel by van to an entry point along the river. You will get to know your group, learning wilderness skills and practicing safety procedures. Then you will begin your expedition.

You will be in the wilderness, camping, traveling, sleeping and eating outdoors for most, if not all, the days and nights you are here. Wilderness travel is demanding. It can literally take every waking moment to get from point A to point B.

Rafting includes numerous challenges, such as paddling into headwinds or through rapids, setting up camp, cooking outdoors and more. Past students and instructors agree that arriving physically fit will enhance your experience and ability to do well on the course and ultimately allow you to take full advantage of the expedition. Sample Itinerary– The following is an example of what your 6-day itinerary may look like. Your actual course plan will vary according to weather, student skills and abilities, and instructor preferences.

Day 1                        Course Start, put on river
Days 2-5                   Training and Main Expedition (river)
Days 6                      Course End and transportation home

Rafting – Each section of river is a beautiful and introductory experience in rafting. Students will travel on the river in four to six-person paddle rafts, and learn to “captain” (maneuver) their paddle raft team through Class II to IV rapids. After lessons basic river travel, students will progress to learning about “reading” water, anticipating obstacles, scouting difficult rapids, and working as an effective team to negotiate technical portions of the river. Students will also learn about river hydrology, swimming, paddle techniques, camp craft, and expeditionary travel.

Service – Service is an integral part of the Outward Bound curriculum. We encourage service to the environment in the form of leaving campsites cleaner than we find them and practicing 'Leave No Trace' ethics throughout the course. We coordinate service projects with land managers (US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, local land trusts, etc.) as well as with select social service agencies (nursing homes, hospitals, etc.). During your course you may have the opportunity to participate in a trail work or other service project.

Course Area

Deschutes River, Oregon – The Deschutes River is part of the National Wild & Scenic Rivers System. The river flows north from the Oregon Cascades to the Columbia River and then on to the Pacific Ocean. The Deschutes watershed plays a very integral role in Central Oregon’s landscape, hosting a vast array of insect, fish, and bird populations throughout the spring and summer months. Common summer wildlife around the river includes osprey, bald eagles, western tanagers, bullock’s orioles, deer, bighorn sheep (rare), rattlesnakes, and waterfowl such as mergansers, great blue herons, and mallard. The river is spring-fed, which results in an unusually cold, constant water flow. The group camps each night along the banks of the river.

Courses generally travel a segment of the Lower Deschutes, approximately 50 miles, depending on length of course, age, and course outcomes. The rapids on the Deschutes are rated to Class IV, mostly Class II-III, and are excellent for learning paddle skills and teamwork. The Lower Deschutes is a popular river for both whitewater rafting and fly fishing, and the region has a colorful human history with a railroad running alongside much of the length of the Lower Deschutes. The river border for 1/3 of the Lower Deschutes is the Warm Springs Reservation. Excellent geologic evidence is present all around this area.


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