2011 Tax Relief Float
April 16, 2011 at 10:00 AM
Tax Relief Float Trip Report
By Tom Hanson
Saturday, April 16th was the date for this year's Tax Relief Float on the middle Deschutes. We had 13 boats and 20+ people. The day was partly cloudy with some wind above Oak Springs — and no rain! The flow of 8,000 cfs made for some interesting changes in this 11-mile run from Harphan Flats to Sandy Beach. Wapanitia was scooting right along with some of the big boulders buried. The large boulder at the bottom (the one my boat always heads toward) was only partially visible. The high current easily moved my boat to the right of this obstacle. Boxcar was also quite easy. I went through first, then stopped in the eddy on the right to take pictures of everyone else.
We stopped at Grey Eagle for lunch and a bit of relaxation in partial sun and about mid-fifties temperature. When we cast off again, a considerable wind picked up just before we got to Oak Springs. Of course it would be blowing hard when everyone was trying to get into position to run the rapids. Some people took the right chute, while others took the left maneuvering section. There was a huge wave on the left (it did not look this big from the road) and I wanted to slide around the right side of it — but the wind had different plans. It pushed me right into the wave. So I straighten out my boat and hit it head on. The oars were ripped from my hands and my boat floundered around for a few seconds in this nasty water. At no time was I in danger of flipping, but I just don't like losing control in the middle of a class IV. I regained the oars about 100 feet later. Oak Springs proved to be an exciting rapids for just about everyone.
We arrived at Sandy Beach around 2:00PM. Thanks to everyone for making this another great day trip.