With rapids like Caldera, Satan’s Gate, and Hell’s Corner, the Upper Klamath offers challenging class IV rapids.
The most difficult part of the day, however, is off the river doing the shuttle. There are two options: 1) Commit to the whole run and put-in a half mile below Boyle Dam. The shuttle drive from here to the take out (upstream of COPCO Lake) is a heinouss 2.5 hours one way. Option #2) Drive to COPCO Lake and take a dirt road to Frane Ranch, which bisects the run into halves. The road is awful. If you do not have a vehicle with good clearance, or if it has been raining or snowing, do not even try. It is pretty much all clay and is slicker than snot when wet. However, it puts you a quarter mile above Caldera and saves a ton of time.
Flows on the Upper Klamath are determined by releases from the Boyle Dam. Generally, there are two flows: one turbine or two. One turbine (just less than 2000 CFS) offers flows that are great for first-timers down the Upper Klamath. Two turbines gives paddlers a much different experience, a more high-water feel.
Take out: Stateline
Typically done in: 1 Day
Difficulty: Class IV
Recommended flows: 1500 to 3000 cfs
Cell phone service: No
Closest town to put in: Klamath Falls, Oregon
Closest town to take out: Hornbrook, California