Illinois Trip Report

Typical scenery on the Illinois - crystal green water, gorgeous canyon foliage and amazing water features

May has been a great month for whitewater. Last week a few of us from Sundance teamed up with our friends at Indigo Creek Outfitters for a trip down one our favorites, the Illinois River in Southern Oregon.

With fantastic scenery, incredible water clarity, and amazing whitewater, the wild and scenic Illinois is a classic multi-day trip and is definitely one to remember. The water level was a comfortable medium-low with tons of eddies, boofs, and continuous rapids that kept us smiling.

Sundancers reveling at one the amazing water features on the Illinois

I had a great time squirting and surfing my play boat down the river, but I think everyone on the trip would agree that the most interesting boater to watch was veteran river guide (and fellow Sundancer) Billy Miller.

Billy Miller scouts Green Wall, the infamous class V rapid on the Illinois. Epic.

Billy is an expert rafter, and lately he has been redefining the frontiers of inflatable boating in his pack-a-raft. It’s basically a glorified inner-tube with a floor, and is designed to be paddled with a kayak paddle. We were all amazed as Billy styled rapid after rapid, including many class IV rapids and the infamous class V Green Wall.

Billy Miller at the entrance to Green Wall- highly technical and difficult enough in a raft - let alone a glorified inner tube.

Watching upstream as a raft maneuvers through Green Wall

The Illinois river is one of the best runs in Oregon. It runs fall through spring and is most popular in April and May. You can find good flow information on, or at For more photos of this trip, visit Sundance’s Flickr page or check out Oregon Rafting’s Facebook page.


About JR

JR's enthusiasm for life readily extends to all things whitewater and at Sundance, we consider him the guru of everything kayak. He spends his summers on the Rogue River as an awesome kayak instructor and during the off season, he gravitates toward any body of water that will give him some thrill. He tends to surround himself with others that share the same passion.