Kayakers, canoeists, & SUPers could spend a lifetime exploring 15,000 acres of waterways.
Wow…mountain and marsh views, wildlife, and enforced speed limits that protect wildlife and those using non- motorized crafts! Nearly 350 species of birds nest here or migrate through. Otter, mink, and beaver emerge along the sheltered marsh channels that follow ancient Indian travel routes.
On and near the Upper Klamath Lake Canoe Trail
The Canoe Trail
Put in and take out: Malone Springs and/or Rocky Point boat launch.
9.5 miles one way, 4-5 hours round trip.
Features: Miles of easy trails through tules and wocus, with water and shore birds, and mountain views.
Maps are posted at the 2 main entry points, Malone Springs and the Rocky Point Launch, or pick up the Canoe Trail map/brochure at Rocky Point Resort, Harriman Springs Resort, or CrystalWood Lodge.
North from Malone Springs
Put in, take out & paddle time: Malone springs
Continue north from the Canoe Trail to Crystal Springs/CrystalWood Lodge and back. 3 miles, 2-3 hours round trip.
Features: Peaceful and more remote, with fewer visitors and only the occasional shoreline home.
South of Rocky Point Boat Launch
Put in, take out, & paddle time: Rocky Point Boat Launch. Follow the shoreline 1/2 mile and take Harriman Creek where it enters from the right. Continue almost 1/2 mile to springs bubbling out of the rocky shoreline in front of Harriman Springs Resort. 1 mile, 1-2 hours round trip.
Features: Dark brown colonial algae grow in the crystal clear water and big trout glide by.
Put in, take out & paddle time: 1-2 hrs. Head south on Rocky Point Road toward Hwy 140, continue straight on gravel when the paved road takes a sharp right to the Hwy. In a few yards, take the only left and go less than 1/4 mile to public parking and easy launch. 1-2 hrs.
Features: An old mile-long channel to the lake for floating logs. Very shady and peaceful with spectacular views of Mt. McLoughlin and lots of bird life.
Put in, take out & paddle time: Odessa Campground, Hwy 140 West, onto USFS Rd 3639. 0.5 hrs – 2 hours.
Features: Abundant water and shore birds with few other paddlers along the shady creek which exits into Upper Klamath Lake. Large steamboats made Sunday excursions from Klamath Falls to Odessa in the early 1900s, tying up nearby.
North and east sides of Upper Klamath Lake
Wood River Headwaters
Put in: Jackson F. Kimball State Recreation Site
Take out: Wood River Day Use Area. Off Sun Mountain Rd.
Paddle time: 0.5 – 1 hrs in the pools or 3.5-4 hrs to Wood River Picnic Area.
Features: “Paddling in the sky” is how a float of the spring-fed Wood River headwaters is often described. Explore several acres of connected crystal clear turquoise pools at this special place. Because of strong currents, only attempt the float to the Wood River Picnic Area if you are an experienced paddler.
Wood River Mouth
Put in, take out & paddle time: Woodriver Wetlands parking area. 0.5 hrs – 2 hrs.
Features: Nearby fields support a large variety of water and shore birds at the mouth of the Wood River. Panoramic views of the peaks surrounding Crater Lake, Pelican Butte, two wilderness areas, and even the glimmering peak of Mt. Shasta. Be aware of the Wood River’s strong current which makes any upstream paddling challenging.
Put in: Klamath County Park on S. Chiloquin Rd., 200 yds. east of Hwy 97.
Take out: Williamson River Resort.
Paddle time: 4 hrs for gentle 5 mile drift
Hwy 140 toward Klamath Falls
Put in, take out & paddle time: Eagle Ridge County Park, Hwy 140. 0.5 – 2 hrs.
Features: Open lake views and marshy shoreline with birds and wildlife.
Paddle time: 0.5 – 2 hrs
Tips and Advice for Paddlers
There’s less wind in the morning when wildlife and birds are the most active. Windy afternoons are common and make paddling difficult.
Canoes are included with room rent at Dearing Cabin, Crater Lake Resort, Lonesome Duck, while CrystalWood Lodge rents canoes to guests. Rocky Point Resort, Agency Lake Resort, Fish Lake Resort, and Lake of the Woods Resort rent canoes, kayaks, and/or boats to day visitors and guests. Sky Lakes Wilderness Rentals, (541) 591-0949, has single and double kayaks, mountain bikes, and shuttle service. ROE! Real Oregon Experience offers kayak tours and rents kayaks and SUPs. The Ledge in Klamath Falls rents kayaks, canoes, and paddle boards.https://skylakeswild.com/
Shuttle service is available at Agency Lake Resort, Sportsman’s River Retreat, and Sky Lakes Wilderness Rentals (541) 591-0949 . Some resorts charge for launch & take-out.
Check our Be Prepared page for some safety tips.