Grants Pass, Oregon Vacation Pictures ~ Rogue River Trips ~ Jet Boat Rides ~ Hellgate Canyon
Rogue River Oregon
After enjoying Crater Lake National Park my mother, niece and I drove to Grants Pass for the next leg of our vacation many years ago. We had reservations at the Motel Del Rogue and had read about the different options for Rogue River trips. Having already taken a couple of river rafting trips on other vacations, we decided to take a jet boat ride to see what that experience would be like.
August was the month of our visit and the weather was warm.
Water always seems alluring when the temperatures are high and our motel was situated right on the banks of the Rogue River.
Rogue River in Oregon
Motel Del Rogue and the Rogue River
Motel Del Rogue
Prior to ever going on vacation research has been done and reservations are generally all made in advance. This is half the fun of vacationing! Getting to read about various places and seeing what they have to offer and then deciding upon the choices is a pleasurable activity.
Of all the places to stay in Grants Pass, the Motel Del Rogue seemed appealing. We were more than happy with our decision once we arrived. In fact, we always talked about going back there and spending more time.
The individual and rustic cabin-like units numbering just 16 overlook the Rogue River. We did some hand washing of some of our clothing and with the dry conditions ( at least it seemed that way to us...coming from the humidity in Houston, Texas ) our clothing was dried very quickly which really made my mother happy.
Set on 2 acres of land, the trees and lawn leading down to the river present a pretty picture whether strolling the grounds or viewing the attractive scenery from one's private decking.
It is truly a homey atmosphere at Motel Del Rogue and it is understandable to find out that they have been in continual business ever since the 1930's.
Rogue River & Ducks
When my mother, niece and I would travel together each summer for a number of years we always chose to do some picnicking along the way to save some time and also help expenses.
Thus, when ducks were spotted on the Rogue River beneath our motel unit, some of our sandwich bread became a feast for the ducks and especially fun for my niece who enjoyed the sudden gathering of hungry birds vying for just the right position to catch those tossed pieces of bread.
Location of the Motel Del Rogue
Grants Pass, Oregon
Grants Pass Vacation
It is easy to see why people like coming to the small town of Grants Pass in southwestern Oregon for vacations.
While it is quite warm in the summer, water sports on the Rogue River provide much in the way of entertainment.
From swimming to boating to fishing...all can be easily enjoyed.
Winters are relatively mild and tourism has become an important source of income to those 34,000 ( + or - ) people who call Grants Pass home.
Lumbering used to be more predominant than it is today.
Residents are very friendly and eager to make one's vacation a memorable one.
The setting just couldn't be prettier!
Riverside Park in Grants Pass, Oregon
This park in Grants Pass is where one boards the jet boats and we had a 2 PM reservation.
The previous night we chose to eat at an Italian restaurant called R-Haus. It was close to where we were staying and it was also situated right on the Rogue River offering river views for diners.
My mother and I both ordered a halibut dinner and enjoyed some Oregon Chardonnay wine with it. My niece chose to eat a steak. We were all pleased with the food and decor of the place was charming.
So for lunch on this day we decided to have a picnic in Riverside Park.
There were many friendly squirrels hovering nearby looking at us as we lunched, and sure enough...they were most happy to join in our repast.
Obviously they are used to being fed by other people who have picnics in this same park. My niece was happy to oblige the furry critters.
Jet Boat Rides
The company that we chose for our jet boat ride was Rogue River Hellgate Excursions.
We didn't know quite what to expect never having ridden on a jet boat previously. But we were game to try something new!
We just knew that the scenery would be spectacular!
One can choose rides which include lunch or even dinner or just rides without food involved. Obviously we choose the latter.
Rogue River from the Jet Boat
The Rogue River is quite serene and almost glass-like with small ripples at first. The reflections from the banks of the river are striking.
Rogue River views from jet boat ride
River Jet Boat
These jet boats have powerful engines and can skim along in places where most other boats could not navigate. All they need are a few inches of water in which to operate.
The Rogue River is calm and glass-like at times and can also offer some challenging areas of whitewater rapids for the most intrepid of river boaters or rafters.
We would see some of both on the jet boat ride that we took.
Jet boating on the Rogue River from Grants Pass, Oregon
Osprey nest on the top of the tree
It is easier to identify birds with books like this one. Our guide on the jet boat ride identified ones within view which made it even more fun.
In addition to being taken on this jet boat ride and getting to see beautiful scenery, we were also given information about some of the wildlife spotted along the banks of the Rogue River.
We saw several osprey nests high up in the forks of dead trees.
Since fish constitutes about 99% of their diet, they are often spotted along fresh water rivers such as this and these raptor birds are located in many parts of the world. They take a while to mature and do not start reproducing until 4 or even 5 years of age. We were told that ospreys mate for life.
Blue herons and many other birds were spotted and pointed out.
On each trip there is the chance to see different forms of wildlife and the captains of these jet boats keep on the lookout so that they can point these things out to patrons riding in their boats making for an even more interesting ride.
Rafting the Rogue River
For the adventurous of spirit, we saw quite a few people navigating the Rogue River in rafts.
These people in the picture below had obviously pulled over for a bit of a rest. The rocks provided a nice perch for them to watch the comings and goings of other watercraft making their way past this spot on the river.
Rogue River scenery in this area
The turn around point for our jet boat ride was Hellgate Canyon.
The rocks close in on the narrowed river and the cliffs are up to 100 feet high at this point. Apparently beyond this point the rapids can become quite impressive.
The movie "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" was filmed for one of the scenes at this very spot on the Rogue River.
Hellgate Canyon on the Rogue River in Oregon
Thanks for tagging along and looking at these pictures taken on our Grants Pass vacation portion of our Oregon trip. The Motel Del Rogue is undoubtedly still laying out the welcome sign for guests in this beautiful and rustic vacation spot. Rogue River trips await your discovery and jet boat rides are fun as we discovered. Hope you enjoyed this look at this scenic area in southwestern Oregon. Happy and safe travels wherever you decide to go!
While I have not visited the Rogue River in winter...the summer months are glorious! The lucky people who live near it see its beauty year round.
Grants Pass, Oregon
Hellgate Canyon Jet Boats
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© 2011 Peggy Woods
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