In 1971 five men from Port­land, Ore­gon head­ed out to the Deschutes Riv­er in cen­tral Ore­gon for what they called “a cheatin’ death affair.”

They planned to descend the Deschutes River’s most for­mi­da­ble obsta­cle; a 14-foot water­fall called Sher­ars Falls, in a raft of tied togeth­er inner tubes.

Sher­ars Falls is not just anoth­er rapid on the riv­er known for its class III and IV thrills. It’s a manda­to­ry portage where the entire­ty of the mus­cu­lar riv­er plunges head­long over a cliff.  Native Amer­i­cans have erect­ed wood­en gang­planks over the churn­ing pool of water to dip net for salmon. And many res­i­dents in the town of Maupin, which lines the Deschutes’ banks, have heard the sto­ries of hap­less adven­tur­ers who have tempt­ed fate along the riv­er only to nev­er be seen again.

Drop­ping the falls in a kayak might be pos­si­ble, but on a flotil­la of inner tubes?

Watch this vin­tage video that cap­tures the essence of fool­hardy adventurers.