The Sweep Boat

header-sweepThe sweep boat evolved from the big rafts used in the early days on the Mississippi.  Nearly a hundred years ago, the Sweepboat was refined for use along the Salmon River in Idaho to haul supplies and mining equipment down whitewater.

 

Time to shove off on the John Day River.
Time to shove off on the John Day River.

It’s a  23 foot raft capable of taking 16 passengers on leisurely tours. Giant oars called “sweeps” control the direction of travel. It is equipped with a small motor for keeping time schedules and combating upriver wind.