Frequently Asked Questions
The Wild & Scenic section of the Rogue River is located in southwest Oregon and the roadless, protected river corridor starts approximately 20 miles northwest of the city of Grants Pass. The nearest airline service is located in the city of Medford about 50 miles from White Water Warehouse's Rogue River launch point. Interstate 5 is the main highway into the area.
We recommend that guests arrive in the area the night before launch day. We also recommend you lodge locally the evening the trip ends. Our preferred lodging partner is Morrison's Lodge located on the banks of the Rogue just 15 minutes from our actual launching point. The beauty of staying at Morrison's is that as soon as you arrive you feel as if your Rogue River rafting or hiking adventure has started.
Here are some of the most asked questions:
1. How do I get to the Rogue River?
The Wild & Scenic section of the Rogue River is located in Southwest Oregon, and starts approximately 20 miles northwest of the city of Grants Pass. It's an easy drive from Seattle, Portland and the San Francisco Bay area using I-5.
Approximate Driving Distance to Grants Pass:
- Seattle - 421 miles (7.75 hrs.)
- Portland - 244 miles (4.5 hrs)
- Medford - 28 miles (40 min.)
- Redding - 183 miles (3.75 hrs.)
- Sacramento - 350 miles (7 hrs.)
- San Francisco - 395 miles (7.25 hrs)
- Los Angeles - 743 miles (15 hrs.)
- Reno - 335 miles (8 hrs)
- Las Vegas - 917 miles (17.5 hrs.)
- Boise - 679 miles (12.5 hrs)
Where to Meet If You're Arriving By Car:
Travel to Merlin, Oregon and meet your Team Leader at Morrison's Lodge at 5:45pm the night before for a one-hour orientation meeting to answer last minute questions. You will receive your waterproof gear bags (one for every two people) to pack. Dinner is on your own. You'll find several restaurants located in the town of Merlin about 15 minutes away, or enjoy a delicious meal on the deck of Morrison's lodge.
How to get to Morrison's Lodge:
Take I-5 (north or south) to Exit #61-Merlin. Turn left (west) onto Merlin-Galice Road and go 12 1/2 miles. You will cross a large, yellow bridge over the Rogue River about two miles before you reach Morrison's, which will be on your right.
If You're Arriving By Air:
The nearest airport is located in Medford, Oregon -- the Rogue Valley International-Medford Airport -- which is approximately 28 miles south of Grants Pass. United, United Express, Horizon/Alaska, and Delta Connection service this airport. Shuttle service can be arranged from the airport to your accommodations at Morrison's Lodge, or to other local accommodations. This shuttle can also take you back to the airport at the end of the trip. We normally return to Morrison's by 5:00 pm on the last day, but it is best not to fly out until the following morning. For assistance with shuttle service, call Affordable Shuttle (541) 479-1042. Please note: The fees that these shuttle companies charge are in addition to WWW's trip fees.
Note: Private aircraft can fly into Grants Pass, Oregon, Airport-FAA Identifier 3S8. The airport is 5 miles from Grants Pass and about 20 minutes from our put-in site at Rand Boat Launch.
2. What lodging in the area do you recommend?
Whether driving or flying, we encourage you to arrive in the area the night before your trip. Our meeting point is at Morrison's Lodge so that is the place we most highly recommend. If they are full, there are a few other options in the area. Call our office for suggestions.
Camping is available near Galice at Indian Mary Campground and at Alameda Bar. Reservations are needed during the summer and can be made thru the local County Park Service: (541) 474-5285.
3. Where do we meet for the trip?
Rafting trips: Travel to Merlin, Oregon and meet your Team Leader at Morrison's Lodge at 5:45pm the night before for a one-hour orientation meeting to answer last minute questions. You will receive your waterproof gear bags (one for every two people) to pack. If you have a car, it will stay at Morrison's Lodge for the duration of the trip unless you choose to have it shuttled to the ending point of the trip. This option is ideal if you plan to explore the Oregon Coast or the California Redwoods after your Rogue River trip.
Hiking trips: Travel to Merlin, Oregon and meet your Team Leader at Morrison's Lodge at 5:45pm the night before for a one-hour orientation meeting to answer last minute questions.
4. What kind of weather can I expect?
Weather in any river canyon can vary widely day to day. However, the Rogue's typical daytime temperatures can climb into the 80's & 90's, with the water temperature generally 60-70 degrees. Early and late season trips can also have temperatures ranging from 60-80. While blue skies & sunshine are predominant, rain can happen any time, so please follow our packing list and bring rain gear!
5. Tell me about your meals.
You won't have to worry about going hungry on our trips. We feed you from lunch the first day thru lunch the last day. The food is fantastic (even if we do say so ourselves), and there is plenty of it! While we provide a modest amount of beer and wine with dinner, you are welcome to bring additional beer, wine, soda or other refreshments. We ask that any beer or extra sodas be in cans, not bottles. If you are a vegetarian, please let us know, but don't worry! Our menus include plenty of food that works for you. If you have special dietary needs for religious or medical reasons, please contact us with specifics.
6. What should I pack for my trip?
All your clothing and personal items should fit into a soft-sided duffel bag (maximum duffel size: 24" long by 12" wide by 12" high). A good rule of thumb is to use a bag the size of what you would carry onto an airplane (except for hard suitcases). When you meet us for your trip we will provide you with a drybag where you can place your travel bag. Note, if you are traveling on our lodge trip, you will share a large dry bag with another guest.
If you are on our lodge trip: Your cabins have beds and showers...you don't need to bring any bedding, towels or soap. You should, however, bring shampoo.
On our camping trips we provide you with a larger dry bag that will hold your sleeping bag that we provide along with your clothes. We provide all necessary camping gear including a sleeping pad, tents, tables, chairs, etc.
River attire is very casual - comfort, convenience and raft space take precedence over style!
Recommended clothing and personal items to bring for lodge and camp trips include:
- 1 pair river shoes (tennis shoes, booties, water socks, tevas, etc.)
- 1 pair evening shoes (tennis shoes, sandals, hiking shoes, etc.)
- 1 pair light trousers (jogging pants, sweats, khaki pants, etc.)
- 1 light weight shirt
- 1 heavy shirt
- 1 fleece jacket
- 2 pair of shorts/swimsuits/underwear
- sun hat or visor
- 1 bath towel & washcloth & biodegradable soap (camp trips only)
- 1 water bottle (on hot days you should drink lots of water -- we provide water to refill your bottle)
- insect repellent
- sunscreen (no oil or sweet smelling types - they contaminate life jackets and attract bees)
- spare eyeglasses/contacts/sunglasses (a strap to keep your glasses around your neck is a good idea)
- small flashlight
- personal toiletries
- paddling or biking gloves (for inflatable kayak paddling)
- rain gear
Clothing should be fast drying. Cotton materials, such as jeans and sweatshirts, are poor choices for wearing on the river. When they get wet, they may take days to dry. Synthetic materials such as nylon or capilene, dry quickly and are also cool on hot days.
It is a good idea to bring a small day pack for use during the day for items you want to carry with you (sunscreen, sunglasses, camera, etc.).
If you are sensitive to the sun, be sure to bring long sleeved shirts, long pants, socks and a hat to protect your skin. Sunburn on the river happens fast and can be severe.
Since the lodges run their power by generators, please NO hair dryers or curling irons.
7. I have a medical condition. Will this be a problem on the trip?
If you have a medical condition, severe allergic reaction or special dietary needs, please inform our staff prior to the beginning of the trip. If you use medications, bring two supplies packed in separate, watertight containers. If you carry an insect sting antidote kit, be certain to bring it in your day pack. If you use a CPAP machine, please note that the first lodge's staff DO NOT run the generator all night. If it is critical that you use a CPAP, please plan ahead and purchase an independent battery pack. You can find these batteries at www.cpap.com
8. How can someone reach me in case of an emergency?
For all intents and purposes, you will be unreachable while on the river. However, give White Water Warehouse's phone number to the individual(s) who would be responsible for notifying you in an emergency. While we cannot guarantee we will be able to contact you, we will use all our resources to reach you. Our office hours (during the summer months) are every day of the week, 9:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
9. Should we tip the guides and the lodge staff?
We are very proud of our guides. Their hard work, dedication, river knowledge, and attention to detail truly sets them apart from the others. If you feel your guides have gone above and beyond the call of duty in providing you with a very special trip, a gratuity may be left at the end of the trip. You can leave the tip with the head guide. He can be counted on to share the tip with all the trip guides. A tip ranging between $50-$60 per guest is typical.
The same applies for the lodge staff at both the Black Bar Lodge and Marial Lodge. If you feel that you have been well served, we recommend a $5.00 per guest gratuity be given to the staff after breakfast each morning.
10. When are deposits & final payments due?
Your reservation is confirmed upon receipt of a $300 per person deposit which is on a first come, first serve basis. The balance is due 60 days prior to the launch date of your trip. If final payment is not received when due, we reserve the right to regard the reservation canceled.
11. What if I need to cancel my trip?
Should you have to cancel your trip plans, deposits and final payments are non-refundable. We strongly recommend the purchase of trip cancellation and interruption insurance, which is available through our office. Once you sign up, we lose the right to sell your reserved space to other individuals or groups. Our number of trips and spaces per trip are limited by river management plans. Therefore, we regret that we cannot make exceptions for personal emergencies. Unfortunately, we cannot move you to next year's schedule.
12. Do you offer trip insurance?
Cancellation and interruption insurance can include full refund should you cancel due to health, medical, or several other reasons. If you cannot afford to forfeit your reservation investment, you should purchase trip insurance. Call our office and we can assist you in the purchase of this insurance...1-800-214-0579.
13. What do I need to do to plan my trip with you?
First, call our office staff. We are happy to help you through the entire process. It really is quite simple. The basic steps are: choose the date you would like to travel with us and forward us a deposit to secure your space or spaces. Second, make your reservations for your lodging the night before your trip with us (we can assist you in doing this). Third, if you are flying in, make your airline reservations with your travel agent (we can help you pick the best times to fly in and out). If you are flying, you will also need to coordinate a separate shuttle to take you to and from the airport. The fees for this shuttle are in addition to our trip fee, but our staff is happy to assist you in coordinating with a shuttle service. And, that's it!
14. What forms of payment do you accept?
Of course, we accept personal checks and money orders but we also accept credit cards for deposits only. The final balance must be paid by check.
15. Do you require us to review and sign a Participant Agreement form?
Yes. We will send you an assumption of risk and liability release form upon booking your trip.
16. Do you have references I can speak to?
Yes, please call or email us and we're happy to provide you with the names and contact information of other guests who have traveled with us and live in your area. After so many years in business we have hundreds of references.