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Oregon Opens A New State Park, On The John Day River

The John Day River upstream from the new park.

The John Day River upstream from the new park.

Dave Miller/OPB

The John Day River is the longest free-flowing river in the western U.S. It’s a majestic, meandering, canyon-carving river in central Oregon that flows into the Columbia near the tiny city of Rufus.

It’s also a part of the state that few Oregonians visit. But that could be changing.

Next week, the newest state park will open on a stretch of lower John Day. It’s called Cottonwood Creek, and at over 8,000 acres it’ll be the second-largest state park in Oregon.

Have you spent time on the John Day River? Have you floated it, or canoed down it, or hiked in the area? Do you plan to go to the new state park?

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