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Willamette Zone Map

Weekly Recreation Report: Willamette Zone

July 17, 2016

 Willamette Zone Fishing

Weekend fishing opportunities

  • Chinook Salmon
    Brittany with a big native Santiam River springer which she then released.
    -Photo by Lucas Noling-
    With the arrival of hot weather, it’s not too early to consider hiking in to one of the area’s high mountain lakes, many of which are stocked with trout.
  • Now is peak season for Chinook salmon and summer steelhead fishing on the Santiam River, which is experiencing some excellent returns this year.
  • A couple hundred hatchery steelhead and a few spring Chinook have made it all the way up into the PGE trap below North Fork Reservoir; these fish are then being recycled back downstream to provide additional fishing opportunities.
  • Timothy Lake near Mount Hood has received a several batches of trophy trout over the past two months, and some of those fish should still be available.
  • A few spring Chinook are still being caught in the lower Willamette River, mostly around the head of the Multnomah Channel.
  • Eugene-Springfield area anglers are reminded to track Willamette Falls counts for spring Chinook and summer steelhead. Allow 10-14 days for the fish to arrive in local rivers (McKenzie, Middle Fork Willamette and Coast Fork Willamette rivers) from the time they are counted at Willamette Falls. There seem to be some larger than normal steelhead being caught this year.

If your favorite fishing spot is no longer listed

It could be the area is closed, inaccessible due or currently offers limited fishing opportunities. These water bodies will return to the recreation report when conditions change. If you believe something is missing, contact us and we’ll find out why.

Send us your fishing report

We’d love to hear about your recent fishing experience. Send us your own fishing report through ODFW Fishing Reports – the information will be forwarded to the local biologist who may use it to update various ODFW resources such as the Weekly Recreation Report.

2016 trout stocking

The 2016 trout stocking schedules for the North Willamette Watershed (pdf) District and the South Willamette Watershed (pdf) District are posted on the ODFW Trout Stocking Page. Take a look to find out when and where Oregon’s hatchery trout are being released around the state.

High Lakes stocking

ODFW takes very small fish to Oregon’s high lakes by helicopter, mule and river boats. Take a look at where these fish were released in the past and where you might even encounter some of them on your next backpacking trek. It typically takes only a year after stocking for fish to reach catchable size.

North Willamette High Lakes Stocking |Mid-Willamette High Lakes Stocking |South Willamette High Lakes Stocking

Check out the new interactive trout stocking map

Find the location and details about the many lakes ponds and streams that receive hatchery trout from ODFW’s fish hatcheries on our Google-based stocking map. Click on the fish icons to bring up all the pertinent information about the state’s trout fishing locations.


The Alton Baker Canoe Canal will be stocked this week with a total of 965 trout, including 150 larger trout. Fish are released at multiple locations along the canal. The canal will be stocked approximately every other week through mid-November.

The canal is located within Alton Baker Park and can be accessed off of Club Road in Eugene. A 4-acre pond at the midpoint of the canal is a good spot but it can be fished all along its two-mile length from Day Island Road in Eugene to Aspen Street in Springfield. The canal is open to fishing all year.

BENSON LAKE: rainbow trout, white crappie, largemouth bass, brown bullhead

Stocked in May with rainbow trout. This is a 40-acre lake located in Benson State Park in the Columbia River Gorge. From Portland, head east on I-84; the park is located on the south side of the freeway about 1/2 mile west of Multnomah Falls.

BETHANY POND: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, bullhead

Stocked this spring with rainbow trout.

Blue Lake
Blue Lake
-Photo by Rick Swart, ODFW-

This is a 10-acre pond located at Bethany west of Portland. The pond is maintained by Tualatin Hills Park and Rec. Amenities include picnic tables, restrooms, and a paved, ADA accessible trail.

BLUE LAKE: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, brown bullhead, black crappie, bluegill

Stocked in May with 8-inch “legal” rainbow trout.

This is a 64-acre lake located in Blue Lake Park three miles west of Troutdale. This family-friendly park with picnic areas, restrooms, walking trail, and ramp for small boats. Park is maintained by Multnomah County.

BLUE RIVER: trout, steelhead

Blue River above Blue River Reservoir was stocked in late June with 750 fish, including 100 larger fish. This was the last stocking of the season. Fish are released at multiple locations from the reservoir upstream to Quentin Creek. Bait use is allowed through Oct. 31. Two wild trout may be harvested per day above Blue River Reservoir only. Otherwise, anglers may keep 5 hatchery trout per day.

BLUE RIVER RESERVOIR: trout, warmwater species

Blue River Reservoir is located east of Eugene near the town of Blue River, north of Hwy. 126 and is open to year-round fishing. The reservoir was stocked in late June for the last time this season with 2,130 hatchery trout.


Regulation changes for 2016 year allow fishing on this river year-round. Trout stocking will continue this week with the release of another 1,800 hatchery trout. Anglers may keep up to 5 trout per day. Note that the river is closed to salmon fishing year-round.

CANBY POND: trout, bass, crappie, bluegill

Canby Pond will not be stocked again until fall due to warm water temperatures and thick aquatic vegetation. However, warmwater fishing for bass, crappie, and bluegill with jigs and surface lures is still a viable option. Canby Pond is a one-acre pond located on the south end of Canby, in Canby City Park. This pond is open only to youth 17 years old and under, as well as persons who possess ODFW's Disabled Hunting and Fishing Permits.


Carmen Reservoir was last stocked in late June with 2,375 rainbow trout, including 375 larger trout. The reservoir is accessed via USFS Road 750 off Hwy. 126, about two miles south of Clear Lake. It is open to fishing all year. Motor boats are prohibited on Carmen Reservoir.

CLACKAMAS RIVER: summer steelhead, spring Chinook

Although the cool “summer” weather continues, the river flows have dropped slightly more in recent days and conditions should remain this way for several weeks. The low flows translate into the river continuing to be a drift or pontoon boat fishery with conditions too low to try and navigate in a sled safely, so boaters beware of partially submerged boulders and logs. Despite the low water anglers are still finding summer steelhead with fish landed from Gladstone upriver to McIver Park this past week. Both boat and bank anglers have been able to get in on the action with very few spring Chinook mixed into the catch as the number of springers in the river appears to be low. There had been a few Chinook landed from the bank at the old “bowling alley” hole above the 99E Bridge in Gladstone, but that fishery has dropped off.

The boat fishery above Rivermill Dam continues to produce a few fish with anglers finding some action on summer steelhead and an occasional spring Chinook when working the water just above the log boom or trolling a bit further upstream from the dam. Boat anglers can access the lake from a relatively new boat ramp in McIver Park.

Over 400 hatchery springers have made it up into the PGE trap below North Fork Reservoir; these fish were being recycled back downstream to provide additional fishing opportunities but are now being transported to Clackamas Hatchery for broodstock and future spawning. A great summer steelhead run is continuing with over 1,900 hatchery summers reaching the North Fork Trap. A number of these fish were getting recycled downstream but recently they’ve been stocked into Faraday Lake for anglers to enjoy. Clackamas Hatchery at McIver Park has their water system back online and has had a fair number of summer steelhead swim in, but Chinook counts are still very low.

Anglers should note that the summer float season is now going strong so they’ll be sharing the river with rafters and tubers during the warm weather. On the busy days it becomes an early morning fishery just to avoid the recreational user crowds.

rainbow trout
So excited to fish.
-Photo by Donny Loudermilk-

Good bank access for can be found in many locations along the river from Gladstone, Cross Park, Riverside Park, along Clackamas River Road, Carver, Barton, and McIver parks. Clackamas River Drive closely follows the river below Carver Park, but be sure to not trespass on private property. If you have a drift boat, you can put in at Riverside Park, Carver Park, Barton Park, Feldheimer’s off Springwater Road, and at both lower and upper McIver Park ramps.

USGS hydrological data for July 18 shows river flows down more at 915 cfs, with a gauge reading of 10.78 feet and the water temperature near 61° F. All of the readings come from the Estacada gauge near Milo McIver State Park.


Clear Lake is open to fishing all year and will be stocked this week with 3,625 rainbow trout, including 1,125 larger trout. Clear Lake is accessed from Hwy. 126 approximately 70 miles east of Springfield. Boat rentals are available from Linn County’s Clear Lake Resort.


The Coast Fork Willamette River is open to angling and bait use is allowed through Oct. 31. The river will be stocked this week with 1,000 fish. Trout are released into the river at several locations near town. In addition to 5 hatchery trout, two wild trout may be kept daily.

COMMONWEALTH LAKE: trout, bass, bluegill, crappie

Warmwater fish should be active. This is a three-acre lake within the Commonwealth Lake Park in Beaverton, the park is maintained by Tualatin Hills Park and Rec. Amenities include ADA accessible trail, picnic tables, playground and restrooms.


Cottage Grove Ponds are open to year round angling and are accessed via an asphalt pathway behind the truck scales on Row River Road. These ponds also offers wildlife viewing opportunities. The pond with the dock was stocked for the last time this season in early April. Warmwater fish continue to be available.

COTTAGE GROVE RESERVOIR: trout, warmwater species

Cottage Grove Reservoir is south of Cottage Grove and is open to fishing all year. The reservoir was last stocked in mid-late April. It will be stocked again in October. Warmwater fish are also available.

CRESWELL POND (GARDEN LAKE): trout, warmwater species

Stocked for the last time this year at the end of March. Warmwater fish will continue to be available. Garden Lake (Creswell Pond) is located in Garden Lake Park on the east side of I-5 in Creswell and is open to fishing all year. The pond and park offer additional wildlife viewing opportunities.

DETROIT RESERVOIR: trout, kokanee

Reservoir elevation is about 19 feet below full pool and most boat ramps, including Mongold, are currently usable. It will be stocked this week with 4,500 legal-sized hatchery rainbow trout. Anglers are reporting kokanee between 12-14 inches.


Dexter Reservoir near Lowell is visible from Hwy. 58. Boat and bank access is available from state and county parks. Parking and bank access are also available from the causeway near Lowell. Dexter Reservoir was last stocked in late April and will be stocked again in September. Largemouth bass and some smallmouth are also available to anglers in this reservoir.

DORENA RESERVOIR: trout, warmwater

Dorena Reservoir is east of Cottage Grove on Row River Road and is open to fishing all year. Trout and warmwater fish are available. Dorena was last stocked in mid-late April and will be stocked again in October.


Stocked the week of April 25 with 2,000 legal-sized rainbow trout. This is an eight-acre pond west of Forest Grove at the junction of Hwy. 8 and Hwy. 6.

EAGLE CREEK: spring Chinook

Eagle Creek
Thomas Butler spends a sunny day fishing on Eagle Creek.
-Photo by Rick Swart-

The creek is still flowing low and clear but a small amount of fishing effort continues with anglers out and about seeking spring Chinook that will be returning smolt releases from the Eagle Fern acclimation pond and the hatchery. A few springers have been caught, while a fair number of fish have also been seen pooling up just below the hatchery. The low flows make it difficult for fish entering the creek from the Clackamas River but anglers can expect a few to sneak in when any kind of unsettled weather comes through.

Keep in mind that long stretches of Eagle Creek run through private property, particularly up near the hatchery and from an area below the lower ladder on down past Bonnie Lure to the mouth. Anglers are advised to pay close attention to where you fish and we encourage you to ask permission prior to accessing or crossing private lands on your way to your favorite fishing hole. See Page 15 of the Oregon Sport Fishing Regulation pamphlet for more information on “Your Rights to Use the Surface, Bed, and Banks of Oregon’s Rivers and Lakes.”

EE WILSON POND: warmwater, trout

This pond is located at EE Wilson Wildlife Area, about a ¼ mile hike from the main parking lot. Recent changes to the fishing regulations now make this a year-round fishery. The pond received a final trout stocking on May 31. Species that may be caught at the pond now are bass, bluegill, and redear sunfish. A valid wildlife area parking permit is required.


Stocked this week with another 2,000 legal-sized rainbow trout in late June. The lake was stocked with trout last week and is frequently stocked with “recycled” hatchery steelhead and Chinook salmon captured at the PGE trap.

Estacada Lake is a 150-acre reservoir on the Clackamas River behind River Mill Dam. There is a boat ramp in Milo McIver State Park at the lower end of the reservoir. A fishing dock next to the boat ramp provides non-boating access to the lake.


Open all year for trout, with bait allowed April 22 – Oct. 31. Open all year for hatchery Chinook, hatchery steelhead and wild steelhead greater than 24 inches below Fall Creek Dam. Fall Creek above Fall Creek Reservoir was stocked for the last time this season in late June with a total of 1,750 hatchery trout. Fish are released from the reservoir upstream to Gold Creek. Five hatchery trout and an additional two wild trout may be harvested daily.


Fall Creek Reservoir was last stocked in mid-late April and will not be stocked again this season. Upstream hatchery trout releases will continue to populate the reservoir.


Stocked this week with another 2,000 legal-sized rainbow trout in late June. The lake was also stocked last week, and some of those fish should still be available. Faraday is a 25-acre reservoir located 1.1 miles southeast of Estacada on Hwy. 224 next to a PGE hydro plant. No boats, walk-in only.

FERN RIDGE RESERVOIR: largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, brown bullhead

This 9,000-acre lake just 12 miles west of Eugene is the Willamette Basin’s largest water body. For local information regarding the lake and available boat ramps, contact the Lane County Parks Department at 541-682-2000.

The reservoir produces crappie over 12 inches and bass angling has been very good in recent years. Best time of year for crappie is April to June, after the water temperature reaches the mid-50s, but fish can still be found in deeper water year round. July and August are peak months for largemouth bass. Fish the shoreline along the southern part of the reservoir, especially the sloughs and inlets where there is underwater structure. Currently, all boat ramps are available.

Foster Reservoir

Foster Reservoir
-Photo by Rick Swart, ODFW-

FOSTER RESERVOIR: trout, bass, perch, catfish

This scenic 1,200-acre reservoir on the South Santiam River is located just 30 minutes from Interstate 5. There is good bank access at several rest stops and campgrounds, and three seasonal boat ramps. The reservoir has finally been filled and all three boat ramps are currently available. Look for smallmouth bass and yellow perch near underwater structure and drop-offs.

Please remember that only kokanee and adipose fin-clipped trout may be kept as part of the trout bag limit, but there are no limits on size or number of bass. Retention of warmwater fish species such as bluegill, catfish, crappie, and yellow perch is also allowed; no limit on size or number.

From I-5 take US 20 east from Albany to the town of Sweet Home. The reservoir is 3 miles past the town on the left.

FREEWAY LAKE, EAST: bass bluegill crappie

This water-body actually consists of three interconnected ponds and features some good size bass and crappie. A boat ramp is available at East Freeway Lake, and there is good bank access around Middle Freeway Lake. Fishing for warmwater gamefish such as bass, bluegill, crappie, and catfish can be very good, especially early and late in the day.

GOLD LAKE: brook trout, rainbow trout

Gold Lake is a 100-acre lake located north of the Willamette Pass summit off Hwy. 58 approximately 23 miles southeast of Oakridge. Fishing is restricted to fly angling with barbless hooks. All rainbow trout must be released unharmed, but unlimited brook trout harvest is allowed.

GREEN PETER RESERVOIR: kokanee, trout, bass

This large reservoir east of Sweet Home is a premier kokanee fishery with a bag limit of 25 fish per day. It also supports stocked rainbow trout and a good population of smallmouth bass. Holdover trout and smallmouth bass can be found near tree stumps and near drop-offs in all parts of the reservoir. Kokanee are running smaller than average this year (8-10 inches), mainly due to high population numbers.

Reservoir elevation is currently about 38 feet below full pool and dropping. As of July 18, Whitcomb Creek boat ramp is only a few feet in the water and may not be available for launching boats this week. However, Thistle Creek boat ramp should be available for boaters throughout the summer.


The release of 2,000 rainbow trout scheduled for the week of May 9 has been cancelled.

This is a stocked 2-acre pond on the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area that offers good bank access. Ideal for kids. A parking permit is required while on the wildlife area. Permits are available from all ODFW license vendors.


Stocked the week of May 30 with 5,000 legal-sized rainbow trout and 125 trophy-sized trout. Harriet is a 23-acre reservoir on the Oak Grove Fork of the Clackamas River in the Mount Hood National Forest. Boat ramp is just past campground.


Stocked the week of May 30 with 1.500 legal-sized rainbow trout and 200 trophy-sized trout. This is a year-round warmwater and spring trout fishing pond in the Columbia River Gorge. Excellent for non-boating anglers. From I-84, take the Benson State Park exit. The pond is adjacent to the Columbia River adjoining Benson State Recreation Area.

Henry Hagg Lake
Henry Hagg Lake
-Photo by Rick Swart, ODFW-

HENRY HAGG LAKE: rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, yellow perch, largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, brown bullhead, yellow bullhead, native cutthroat trout

Stocked the week of June 20 with 3,500 legal-sized rainbow trout, bringing to more than 43,000 the number of trout released at this location in 2016.

Henry Hagg Lake is now open year-round and is stocked regularly throughout the spring and fall. This is a 1,110-acre lake and premier fishery located seven miles southwest of Forest Grove. Maintained and operated by Washington County, the park features numerous picnic areas, two boat launching facilities, more than 15 miles of hiking trails, and observation decks for wildlife and bird watching.

HIGH MOUNTAIN LAKES: trout (rainbow, brook, cutthroat)

There are several mountain lakes available in the area for day use or overnight camping that require only a short hike to reach. Many are easy day hikes, perfect for packing in a lunch and doing some fishing then heading home in early evening. Others require a bit more planning and prep as the distance and terrain dictates so a good topographical map should be considered. When hiking into any of the high lakes be prepared for the unexpected from weather, to mosquitos, to accidents. And please pack out what you pack in!

Some of these high lakes get very little use, and anglers will often find the solitude incredible. If you plan to camp keep in mind that overnight temperatures at the higher elevations can be quite chilly, even in mid-summer. And as the fire season gets in full swing you should check on restrictions regarding open campfires.

Maps should be available from the local U.S. Forest Service office. Lists of stocked Willamette basin high cascade lakes are available on-line – see Willamette Zone, North and South Willamette High Lakes.

HILLS CREEK RESERVOIR: trout, warmwater fish

This reservoir is located about four miles southeast of Oakridge and is open to year round fishing. Hills Creek Reservoir is stocked with 60,000 adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout fingerlings and 100,000 adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook salmon fingerlings annually to provide a harvest fishery the following year. Fingerlings are in addition to spring catchable trout releases. Trout and salmon must be adipose-fin clipped to be harvested. Large native trout are available for catch-and-release fishing.

HILLS CREEK and Hills Creek Tributaries above HILLS CREEK RESERVOIR: trout

Hills Creek and its tributaries above Hills Creek Reservoir are open all year. Bait is allowed April 22 through October 31. Two wild trout 8” or longer may be kept per day. Hills Creek is not stocked.


Stocked the week of June 27 with 2,000 legal-sized rainbow trout.

This is a 14-acre lake located in the Olallie Lake Basin on the Mt. Hood National Forest. There are a few campsites available at Horseshoe Lake Campground.

HUDDLESTON POND: trout, bass, bluegill

Stocked the week of May 30 with 1,500 rainbow trout ranging from 8-inch “legals” to 2-pound “trophies.”

Huddleston is a 5-acre pond located within Huddleston Pond Park in the city of Willamina, Ore. A former mill pond, it contains good habitat for bass and bluegill. It gets stocked with trout in the spring.

The pond reaches a maximum depth of about 10 feet, with shallow "kid-friendly" edges. It is ADA accessible in places, with a restroom and picnic areas nearby. There is paved parking lot and small ramp for people who want to launch small, non-motorized boats.

JUNCTION CITY POND: trout, crappie

Junction City is a popular stocked trout fishing pond located about two miles south of Junction City on Hwy. 99W on the west side of the highway. There is excellent access around the entire 5-acre pond. Trout stocking is over for the season but the pond still offers warmwater fishing.

Rainbow Trout
A string of trout
-Photo by Kathy Munsl -


Leaburg Lake is open to angling all year. Bait use is allowed April 22-Oct. 31. Only hatchery fish may be kept. All wild trout must be released. The lake will be stocked with 1,400 trout this week. The lake will be stocked almost weekly through the summer. Leaburg Dam is closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic weekdays from 8 am-noon and 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. through September. Check EWEB’s website for updates.

MCKENZIE RIVER below Leaburg Lake: trout, salmon, steelhead

The McKenzie River below Leaburg Lake is stocked with hatchery trout from the Leaburg Town Landing downstream to Hendricks Bridge from late April through early September. All non-adipose fin-clipped trout must be released unharmed. Bait use is allowed April 22 through Oct. 31. The lower McKenzie River was boat-stocked the week of July 4th with 3,750 trout from Leaburg Town Landing to Hendricks Bridge.

This river reach is open to retention of adipose fin-clipped salmon and steelhead and non-adipose fin-clipped steelhead greater than 24 inches in length. A Columbia River Basin Endorsement is required for anglers targeting salmon and steelhead in the McKenzie.

Leaburg Dam is closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic weekdays from 8 am-noon and 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. through September. Check EWEB’s website for updates.

MCKENZIE RIVER above Leaburg Lake: trout, steelhead

The McKenzie River above Leaburg Lake is stocked with hatchery trout from Finn Rock to Goodpasture Landing, with some summer releases beginning at Forest Glen boat landing, from late April through mid-September. The upper McKenzie River will be boat-stocked this week from Forest Glen Boat Landing near the town of Blue River downstream to the Goodpasture Boat Landing with a total of 8,250 fish. All non-adipose fin-clipped trout must be released unharmed. Bait use is allowed April 22 through Oct. 31.

MIDDLE FORK WILLAMETTE RIVER: trout, salmon, steelhead

The Middle Fork Willamette River is open to bait below Dexter Dam only. This river reach is open to retention of adipose fin-clipped salmon and steelhead and non-adipose fin-clipped steelhead greater than 24 inches in length. A Columbia River Basin Endorsement is required for anglers targeting salmon and steelhead in the Middle Fork Willamette below Dexter Dam.

The Middle Fork Willamette above Lookout Point and Hills Creek reservoirs is open to angling using lures and artificial flies. All wild trout must be released upstream of Lookout Point Reservoir. The Middle Fork Willamette River is not stocked with hatchery trout.

MOLALLA RIVER: spring Chinook

The Molalla River water levels have declined even further as mid-summer flows set in and challenging conditions await anglers seeking spring Chinook. Spring Chinook passage continues to plod along steadily at Willamette Falls and these count numbers are an indicator of how many fish could be available to catch as a few turn into the Molalla instead of heading further up the Willamette. Partial spring Chinook passage numbers have exceeded 28,000 through July 13. At this date of the season there should be springer fishing available from the Trout Creek acclimation pond returns.

USGS hydrological data for the Molalla River on July 18 was unavailable.

MT HOOD POND: trout, crappie, bluegill

Stocked the week of April 18 with 1,000 legal-sized rainbow trout. Angling is restricted to youths age 17 and under and holders of ODFW's Disabled Anglers permits from April 1 - Aug. 31. Mt. Hood Pond is located on the Mt. Hood Community College campus in Gresham, at 26000 SE Stark St.


The boat ramp and access to Promontory Park at the south end of the reservoir have been reopened. The lake reservoir has been stocked the past five weeks with more than 35,000 trout, including 2,500 more released the week of June 27.

Olallie Lake
Olallie Lake
-Photo by ODFW-


Olallie Lake will be stocked again the week of June 27 with another 2,800 legal-sized rainbow trout and 125 trophies. This is the fifth week in a row that hatchery trout – including trophy-sized fish – have been released into this lake.

Olallie Lake is also a popular jumping off point for backpackers who want to fish the surrounding high lakes or access the Pacific Crest Trail. There are three campgrounds and a rustic cabin resort on this lake as well as a hiking trail that encircles the perimeter. Yurts, cabins, and boat rentals are available at Olallie Lake Resort. A boat ramp is available at Peninsula Campground on the southwest shore of the lake. Camping are available at Olallie Meadows Campground and Paul Dennis Campground.

PROGRESS LAKE: trout, brown bullhead

Stocked with rainbow trout in April and May. For truly urban fishing, this is a 4-acre pond next to the Progress Ridge Town Center in Beaverton, Oregon. The pond is an old rock pit and has a maximum depth of 54 feet. There is a sidewalk, fishing platform and viewing platform on one side of the lake. Boating and swimming are not allowed.


This stream above Green Peter Reservoir provides excellent opportunities to fish for trout, with good bank access along most of its length. Regulation changes for 2016 makes this a year-round fishery with a bag limit of 5 trout per day. It was stocked again last week with 2,000 legal-size hatchery rainbow trout. Light gear works best and fly fishing can be very good, but bait is also allowed.

There are two BLM campgrounds as well as numerous designated campsites along the road. To get there, follow the directions to Green Peter Reservoir and continue around the lake until the river begins.


Salmon Creek near Oakridge is open to angling all year. Bait use is allowed April 22 through October 31. Salmon Creek will be stocked this week with a total of 850 hatchery trout. Trout are released at multiple locations upstream to Black Creek. Two wild trout per day, 8 inch minimum length, may be kept in addition to 5 hatchery trout. Stockings will continue approximately every other week through mid-August.


Salt Creek is an unstocked tributary to the Middle Fork Willamette River east of Oakridge. Salt Creek and its tributaries are open to angling all year. Bait use is allowed April 22-October 31. Two wild trout may be kept per day, 8 inch minimum length.

SANDY RIVER: summer steelhead, spring Chinook

The ongoing cool weather appears to be keeping some of the glacial effects to a minimum but the river is very low as summertime flows become firmly established. Steady fishing effort continues at Cedar Creek as evidenced by the volume of cars in the hatchery parking lot and good catch numbers of summer steelhead are still coming out every day. A few more spring Chinook have been landed down in the lower river, along with reports of fish being caught up further near the hatchery. The springer fishing should improve as the weeks move along with fish moving further up into the system.

Of note, ODFW fish sorting traps are now in place on the lower Bull Run River, Zig Zag River, and Salmon River as a means of collecting broodstock hatchery fish while passing wild fish upstream. These traps get worked 7 days a week by ODFW personnel and although it’s very early there have been hatchery and wild Chinook show up in a couple of the traps so the springers are working their way well into the system.

USGS hydrological data for the Sandy River on July 18 shows flows have dropped to 504 cfs, a gauge reading of 8.05 feet, and the water temperature hovering around 57°.

SANTIAM RIVER (NORTH FORK): steelhead, Chinook

North Santiam
North Santiam
-Photo by Rick Swart, ODFW-

Returns of adult steelhead and Chinook are in full swing at Willamette Falls and many of them have shown up in the Santiam basin. Over 4,100 Chinook have passed the Bennett dams in Stayton, along with 4,474 summer steelhead as of July 16. As of July 4, they have counted more than 17,900 summer steelhead and over 29,000 spring Chinook at the Willamette Falls fish ladder. Flows on the N. Santiam have been fairly consistent lately and are not expected to change much over the next few weeks.

When the ‘bite’ is on, bobbers and jigs are the preferred angling method with spoons, spinners and egg clusters also being effective. Currently the entire river below Packsaddle Park (near the Minto Fish Facility) is open year-round to hatchery steelhead. River levels best for fishing are below 3,000 cfs at the Mehama gauge (the Mehama gauge was at 1,270 cfs as of July 18). Current conditions

Anglers may keep up to 5 hatchery trout from the mouth to Big Cliff dam through Oct. 31.


Regulation changes for 2016 makes this section a year-round fishery. The river will be stocked this week with 3,000 hatchery rainbow trout. Anglers may keep up to 5 trout per day. This section of river is closed to salmon fishing.

SANTIAM RIVER (SOUTH FORK): steelhead, Chinook, bass

Flows are settling in to normal summer conditions. Current flows (as of July 18) are a little below 900 cfs as measured at Waterloo and are likely to drop further as the summer progresses.

Current conditions

Peak season for summer steelhead and spring Chinook is now and anglers are reportedly doing very well. Anglers can target these fish throughout the river, with heaviest concentrations from Waterloo up to Wiley Creek.

As of July 15, 1,002 spring Chinook and 2,542 summer steelhead have been reported at Foster dam fish ladder. Most of these summer steelhead are being recycled downstream to give anglers a second chance at catching them.

Anglers may keep up to 5 hatchery trout below Foster dam through Oct. 31.


Stocked the week of May 30 with 1,100 legal-sized rainbow trout, 300 13-inchers, and 125 trophy-sized trout weighing 1-2 pounds apiece.

Sheridan Pond is a 2 1/2-acre pond located on the edge of town. It provides excellent access for families and kids. Good parking. There is an outhouse provided. It is stocked throughout the year with hatchery trout.

To get there take Hwy. 18 to Exit 33 onto Balston Rd. Go south on Balston Rd. approximately half a mile and turn left onto a gravel road leading about a quarter mile to the pond.


Last stocked with trout in April. This is a 4-acre pond located within Ivor Davies Nature Park in the city of Molalla. It can be accessed by the Fifth St. Trailhead across from Heckard Football Stadium.


Stocked the week of June 13 with 2,600 legals and 200 “pounders.” This is a 65-acre reservoir on Silver Creek 2.5 miles south of Silverton on Hwy. 214.


This youth-only fishing pond has been stocked with 1,800 legal-sized rainbow trout since releases began in mid-May, including 300 fish the week of June 13. This is small pond next to Promontory Park and North Fork Reservoir near Estacada. Fishing restricted to youths 17 and under. Cleaning station, restroom nearby.


Smith Reservoir is north of Trail Bridge Reservoir and is accessed by turning off Hwy. 126 at Trail Bridge Reservoir and following USFS Road 730 north to Smith Dam. The reservoir is not visible from the highway and is open to year-around bait fishing. Smith Reservoir was stocked in late June for the last time this season with 5,000 rainbow trout.

Rainbow Trout

Andrea with a nice rainbow trout she caught
-Photo by Douglas E Osbon-

ST. LOUIS PONDS: trout, bass, crappie, bluegill, yellow perch, channel catfish

Stocked the week of May 30 with 700 trout, including some half-pounders. St. Louis Ponds is a 240-acre fishing complex of seven ponds owned and managed jointly by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and Marion County Parks Department. The site has a 2,300-foot paved ADA footpath with turnouts, fishing platforms, restrooms and picnic tables. It is stocked throughout the year with hatchery trout and has many other species of warmwater fish.

St. Louis Ponds is located 13 miles north of Salem and west of I-5. To get to there from the north, take the Woodburn exit off I-5. Then go east to Hwy. 99E. At Hwy. 99E, head south to the town of Gervais. At the light, go west on Gervais Rd. through Gervais. Gervais Rd. changes to St Louis Rd. Continue west on St Louis Rd. as it crosses over I-5 to Tesch Lane, at the railroad crossing. Go left on Tesch Lane and follow the signs to the ponds, about a mile to the main parking lot.

SUNNYSIDE PARK POND: bass, bluegill

This 4-acre pond is located 2 miles above the upper end of Foster Reservoir. The stocking season at Sunnyside Pond has ended for the summer, but there may still be a few trout left. The pond also offers bluegill and largemouth bass year round.

The park has a campground and picnic area and is a great place to take kids fishing. There is also boat ramp access to the Middle Fork arm of Foster Reservoir. To get there from I5, take US 20 through the town of Sweet Home and continue around Foster Reservoir to Quartzville Creek road. Take a left and follow this road for two miles to the park.

TIMOTHY LAKE: rainbow trout

Timothy Lake is one of five Oregon fishing venues around the state selected this year for a pilot “trophy trout” program. As such, it has received a total of 5,000 trophy trout since mid-May. Timothy reportedly has been producing some nice catches of kokanee this year, too. Timothy is one of Oregon’s most beautiful lakes, spanning 1,400-acre acres within the Mount Hood National Forest, 80 miles east of Portland past Mt. Hood. From Hwy 26 turn onto Forest Rd 42 (Skyline Rd), and then west to Forest Rd 57. It is a good destination to consider anytime mountain roads are clear but especially during the summer when looking for a place to escape the heat.


Trail Bridge Reservoir is open to year-round fishing. This waterbody is adjacent to Hwy. 126 and is approximately 60 miles east of Springfield. Only adipose fin-clipped trout may be harvested from Trail Bridge Reservoir. Only flies and lures may be used. Trail Bridge Reservoir was stocked the week of July 4th with 3,000 hatchery trout.


Recently stocked with 4,500 legal-sized rainbow trout.

Trillium is a 60-acre lake located approximately three miles east of Government Camp off of Hwy. 26. This lake is popular for fishing, camping and photography, often clearly reflecting Mount Hood. Adjacent Trillium Lake Campground is administered by the Zigzag Ranger District of the Mount Hood National Forest. The large campground features a seasonal boat ramp and wheelchair-accessible floating dock.

TROJAN POND: trout, panfish

Trojan will get another 500 trophy-sized rainbow trout this week. It is one of five venues selected for the 2016 “trophy trout” program, and as as such has received more than 1,500 of the 1-2 pound hatchery trout so far this spring. Trojan Pond is a 15-acre pond just east of Rainier on the north side of Hwy. 30 at the Trojan nuclear facility. The pond is located on the right side of the road as soon as you turn onto the Trojan Access Road.

TUALATIN RIVER and tribs: trout

These are now year-round fishing streams under the 2016 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations. Open all year for catch-and-release trout fishing. Harvest allowed May 22-Oct. 31.

WALLING POND: trout, crappie, bass

Trout stocking is finished for the season. This is an 8-acre privately owned pond located in Salem at the northeast corner of McGilchrist and 16th Streets, S.E.

Waverly Lake
Waverly Pond
- Photo by Rick Swart-

WALTER WIRTH LAKE: trout, crappie, bass

Trout stocking is finished for the season. Walter Wirth is a 20-acre lake located within the City of Salem’s Cascades Gateway Park.

WAVERLY POND: trout, bluegill, catfish

Waverly Pond is located in Albany and is regularly stocked in fall, winter and spring. For summer fishing it has bluegill and catfish available. From I-5 take exit 234 west towards Albany. The pond is located a quarter mile down Pacific Boulevard on the right. A paved ADA-accessible path runs all the way around the pond.

WILLAMETTE RIVER: sturgeon, summer steelhead, spring Chinook

A few late season spring Chinook boat anglers are still working the Willamette and landing an occasional bright fish down near the head of Multnomah Channel. Although reliable reports have come back with fish landed in the lower channel, the best spot is along the shipping terminals across from the channel head. Despite the time of year and some folks questioning the existence of such a late springer fishery it is indeed a valid report. ODFW saw this fishery develop several years ago but it’s growth and popularity has been slow to take hold. There’s also the possibility of hooking into summer steelhead, mainly near the mouth of the Clackamas River where the cooler water is coming into the Willamette.

Anglers wanting to experience a fast action fishery using light tackle should try some late season shad fishing in the Willamette. The catch and effort for shad this past week by boat and bank anglers had begun to wane some but shad were still being hooked in good numbers, mainly in Oregon City up closer to the falls.

Anglers will also find there are plenty of warm water fishing opportunities on the Willamette for bass and small pan fish, working the rocky shorelines and around areas with structure, particularly near Cedar Island and Milwaukie. Reports indicate the small mouth bass fishing has been very good this spring.

Catch-and-release fishing for sturgeon remains as another option for Willamette River anglers.

As of Monday, July 13, a partial passage count of spring Chinook adults at Willamette Falls stood at over 28,000 fish while the summer steelhead partial passage count at Willamette Falls was showing over 18,300 fish.
USGS hydrological data for the Willamette River on July 18 shows flows down significantly at 6,560 cfs, the water temperature near 71°F , and visibility still very clear at 8.2 ft.

YAMHILL RIVER and tributaries: trout

The South Fork Yamhill was recently stocked with 1,900 rainbow trout. The Yamhill and its tributaries are now year-round fishing streams under the 2016 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations. They are open all year for catch-and-release trout fishing, with harvest limited to May 22-Oct. 31.

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  Willamette Zone Hunting


Please remember to check with the landowner for access restrictions prior to entering private lands. Private timberlands access policy

In addition industrial forestland owners will usually have information regarding access to their property posted on their gates and usually have a “hotline” devoted to providing up-to-date access for hunters.

Hunters are reminded to have permission to hunt or make sure hunting is allowed before accessing private lands.

-Oregon Fish and Wildlife-


COUGAR season is open. A productive hunting technique is to use predator calls to mimic a distressed prey species. Approaching cougars can be difficult to see when you are predator calling so hunting with a partner is advised. Most deer and elk have moved out of their wintering areas and cougars will spend more time moving around their territories looking for prey so hunters need to be mobile. Successful cougar hunters will need to check-in any cougar taken at an ODFW office within 10 days of the kill. Hunters are reminded that biologists located in field offices may be out in the field handling other issues so call ahead to make arrangements to have your cougar checked-in. The hide and skull must be unfrozen and the skull and proof of sex must be attached to the hide. Cougar hunters are reminded that it is required to submit the reproductive tract of any female cougar taken.The reproductive tract provides valuable information on the number and frequency of kittens born annually in Oregon and is a critical part of ODFW’s cougar population models. Pick up the Big Game Hunting Regulations before your hunting trip to ensure that you are familiar with all of the requirements.

See 2016 Cougar Regulations for details


Please use the online form below to report observations of live elk, hunter-harvested or dead elk showing signs of elk hoof disease that may include lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves. If you harvest an elk or locate a dead animal with suspected hoof disease, please take the following steps:

  • Remove and save the affected hoof/hooves in a plastic bag and place in a cool area for further evaluation by ODFW
  • Collect GPS locations
  • Take digital photos of affected hooves
  • Contact ODFW at the toll-free wildlife health lab at 866-968-2600 or email Veterinarians at
  • Fill out this online form


Black-tail Fawn
Black-tail Fawn
-Photo by Kathy Munsel-

Newborn animals are getting their start in the wild. Help them out by giving them space and leaving them alone. ODFW and Oregon State Police remind Oregonians that taking young animals out of the wild isn’t just against the law—it’s also bad for the animal. These animals miss the chance to learn important survival skills from their parents like where to feed, what to eat, how to behave as part of a group and how to escape from predators.

Unfortunately, every year about this time, ODFW offices across Oregon get calls from people concerned about “orphaned” deer fawns, elk calves, seal pups and other animals they find alone. But the mother animal is usually just off feeding not far away. She will return soon, so don’t interfere. People often pick up animals they find alone out of good intentions, without realizing they may be sentencing the animal to an early death by removing it from its natural environment and its parents.

Never assume a young animal is orphaned unless you saw its parent killed. In almost all cases, the parent will return once it is safe to do so, like when people and dogs aren’t around. Removing or “capturing” an animal from the wild and keeping it in captivity without a permit is against state law (OAR 635-044-0015), as is transporting many animals. Last year, seven people were cited for doing so (No wildlife holding permit/Take-hold young game mammal).


The proper handling of harvested wildlife is the most important criteria to ensure its value as table fare. After properly tagging the animal, the hunter should remove the entrails and get the hide off to start the cool-down process. Wipe down the carcass with a dry cloth to remove any foreign material and keep the carcass sanitary by placing it into a clean dry cloth game bag.


Except for cougar, big game hunting is closed during the summer months. This is a good time for hunters to scout for the upcoming fall hunting seasons. The antlers of buck deer and bull elk are in velvet and sensitive to being bumped. This contributes to bucks and bulls spending more time out in the open and visible. Hunters that spend some time hiking and scouting will not only stay in better hunting shape but may find an animal to target this fall. Try to avoid disturbing females with young when viewing animals. Hunters who drew a controlled tag in the controlled draw applications are reminded to purchase it no later than the day before the hunt begins.

Hunters are reminded to be prepared for emergencies by keeping survival equipment such as food, water, signal mirror, whistle, sleeping bag and first aid kit with you and in your vehicle during your outdoor adventures. Don’t forget to wear the proper clothing; it is your first defense against the elements. Let someone know where you will be and when you expect to return just in case your vehicle becomes stuck or breaks down.

Be safe, be responsible and be legal.

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 Willamette Zone Wildlife Viewing



black-tailed deer
Three point blacktail
-Photo by Blaine Fanning-

Black-tail deer: Black-tail deer bucks are now re-growing their antlers. While growing, new antlers are covered in soft velvet. Bucks rub their antlers on trees during late summer to scrape off the velvet. These deer are common throughout the Willamette Valley and can often be seen at ODFW Wildlife Areas EE Wilson, Fern Ridge and Sauvie Island. Morning and evening are best viewing times.

Elk: At this time of year, elk can often be seen at the William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge near Corvallis. While viewing elk, look into the herds and you will be able to see the young bulls showing their spikes.

Upland birds: While out and about in the Valley, keep your eyes open for upland game birds such as grouse and valley quail traveling with their young. Fledglings are also abundant as young birds like the robin learn to take flight.

Beavers: In 1969, the Legislature recognized the American Beaver by naming it Oregon’s state animal. Oregon’s early economy was built on beaver pelts, feeding European and eastern American demand for hats and coats. Today, beavers are part of Oregon’s landscape, found in many of the streams throughout the Willamette Valley. They can often be seen swimming in streams in the early morning this time of year. Find out more about the state animal at our Living with Wildlife section.

Harlequin ducks: Oregon’s only “anadromous” duck, this seaduck winters at the coast and then moves inland to breed. Harlequin ducks can be viewed in the spring and early summer along the middle and upper McKenzie River at Cooks Rapid or Bear Creek Rapid and the Middle Fork Willamette River around the town of Oakridge. They can also be found on the North Santiam River from Mill City upstream to above Marion Forks.

Newts: a type of salamander common in the Pacific Northwest may be observed in their migration from terrestrial environs such as rotten logs and moist soil to their breeding grounds in ponds, small lakes and the edges of streams. These small amphibians may be found if you are hiking in forests during or just after it rains.

Great blue herons: In 1986, the City of Portland adopted this species as the city’s official bird. These large rock overlooking the water.

Garter snakes: Three species of garter snakes occur in the Willamette Valley. A good place to see these harmless snakes is on gravel roads and trails through wetland areas. Wildlife areas in the Willamette Valley such as Fern Ridge, Finley, EE Wilson, Baskett Slough and Ankeny are all good areas to see these beautiful animals. Best viewing conditions are on warm sunny days.

Ospreys: Osprey are among the most specialized of hawks, hovering high over the water to spot fish and then diving head and feet first to capture their prey. Special pads on their feet help to grip the slippery fish. Seeing them catch fish is a spectacular sight.

Osprey in flight
-Photo by Cathy Nowak-

Fern Ridge Wildlife Area

ODFW’s Fern Ridge Wildlife Area and lake are open daily during the summer months. Viewing opportunities are excellent this time of year for many species of waterfowl and also osprey, black-necked stilts, yellow-headed blackbirds, and occasionally, and pelicans.

Visitors are reminded that dogs must be kept on leash at all times. Parking areas are located along Highway 126, Nielson Road, Cantrell Road, Territorial Highway, and Clear Lake Road. Visitors are cautioned that there have been recent vehicle break-ins at area parking lots. Please secure your valuables before leaving your vehicle unattended. Contact the wildlife area headquarters, (541) 935-2591 if you have any questions.

EE Wilson Wildlife Area

Summer is a great time to go birdwatching at the EE Wilson Wildlife Area while the waterfowl broods and songbirds are caring for their young. Bring along your fishing pole as there is a stocked fishing pond on site.

Sauvie Island Wildlife Area

Come out and watch young birds as they learn new skills and gain their independence. At Sauvie Island Wildlife Area, you can easily see many of the resident waterfowl training goslings and ducklings.

The Sauvie Island Wildlife Area eastside units and Westside, Oak Island and North units are open. All areas require a Sauvie Island Wildlife Area Parking Permit.

Sauvie Island is a main stopping point for migratory birds as they travel along the Pacific Flyway, and ODFW actively manages the Wildlife Area to provide food and cover for them. An abundance of ducks and geese can be seen from many points around the island, as can raptors, including bald eagles, northern harriers, sandhill cranes, red-tailed hawks and American kestrel. Spring migrants are arriving such as orange-crowned warbler, pacific-slope flycatcher and purple martins.

Sauvie Island Wildlife Area is located on Sauvie Island, only 10 miles north of Portland off Highway 30. A parking permit is required for the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area and can be purchased at ODFW License vendors, at the Sauvie Island ODFW office, Monday through Friday during office hours or online. For more information, call (503) 621-3488.

Directions to Sauvie Island Wildlife Area

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