Little Deschutes River (Oregon)

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Coordinates: 43°51′14″N 121°27′14″W / 43.85389°N 121.45389°W / 43.85389; -121.45389
Little Deschutes River
Name origin: From Riviere des Chutes, used by early 19th-century fur traders[1]
Country United States
State Oregon
County Klamath and Deschutes
Source Cascade Range
 - location Mule Mountain, Klamath County
 - elevation 6,219 ft (1,896 m) [2]
 - coordinates 43°18′25″N 121°59′43″W / 43.30694°N 121.99528°W / 43.30694; -121.99528 [3]
Mouth Deschutes River
 - location near Sunriver, Deschutes County
 - elevation 4,163 ft (1,269 m) [3]
 - coordinates 43°51′14″N 121°27′14″W / 43.85389°N 121.45389°W / 43.85389; -121.45389 [3]
Length 92 mi (148 km) [4]
Basin 1,020 sq mi (2,642 km2) [5]
Location of the mouth of the Little Deschutes River in Oregon

The Little Deschutes River is a tributary of the Deschutes River in the central part of the U.S. state of Oregon. It is about 92 miles (148 km) long,[4] with a drainage basin of 1,020 square miles (2,600 km2).[5] It drains a rural area on the east side of the Cascade Range south of Bend.[6]


The Little Deschutes River rises near Mule Peak in the high Cascades in the Mount Thielsen Wilderness in northwestern Klamath County, approximately 20 miles (32 km) north of Crater Lake. It flows generally north from the mountains through the Deschutes National Forest, roughly following U.S. Highway 97 past La Pine. It joins the Deschutes from the south approximately 20 miles (32 km) south of Bend in southern Deschutes County.[6]

It passes through the small towns of Crescent and Gilchrist and joins with the Deschutes at Sunriver. The stream meanders significantly most of its course, though this is less pronounced above river mile 80 or river kilometer 130, which is near its crossing of Oregon Route 58.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ McArthur, Lewis A.; McArthur, Lewis L. (2003) [1928]. Oregon Geographic Names, 7th ed. Portland, Oregon: Oregon Historical Society Press. pp. 282–83. ISBN 0-87595-277-1. 
  2. ^ Source elevation derived from Google Earth search using GNIS source coordinates.
  3. ^ a b c "Little Deschutes River". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey (USGS). November 28, 1980. Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b "Decision Notice and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI): Big Marsh Creek and Little Deschutes River Wild and Scenic River Plans" (PDF). United States Forest Service. Retrieved August 26, 2010. 
  5. ^ a b "Bull Trout Recovery Plan: Columbia River/Klamath (2002), Chapter 7: Deschutes River" (PDF). United States Fish and Wildlife Service. p. 2. Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c Oregon Atlas & Gazetteer. Freeport, Maine: DeLorme Mapping. 1991. pp. 38, 44–45. ISBN 0-89933-235-8.