Willamette Zone Fishing
|Joey Powers with a limit of coho he caught on the Sandy River
-Photo by Rick Swart-
Weekend fishing opportunities
- ODFW will host a free fishing event Saturday, Oct. 22 from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Mt. Hood pond.
- Trout stocking continues this week with planned releases at Alton Baker Canal, St. Louis Ponds, and Mt. Hood pond.
- Steelhead fishing should be fair to good in local streams as soon as high water recedes.
- Coho are moving into the lower Clackamas and Sandy rivers and Eagle Creek, with some reports of catches in the lower reaches. Daily coho crossings at Willamette Falls have been in triple digits the past week.
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.
Check out our 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.
ALTON BAKER CANOE CANAL: trout
The Alton Baker Canoe Canal will be stocked this week with a total of 555 trout, including 55 larger trout. Fish are released at multiple locations along the canal. The canal will be stocked approximately every other week through mid-November and is a great place to take the kids fishing.
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.
-Photo by Jim Yuskavitch, ODFW-
BENSON LAKE: rainbow trout, white crappie, largemouth bass, brown bullhead
Stocked in the spring 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. 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
This 64-acre lake is located in Blue Lake Regional Park three miles west of Troutdale. Amenities include picnic areas, restrooms, walking trail, and ramp for small boats. Park is maintained by Metro.
BLUE RIVER: trout
Blue River above Blue River Reservoir was stocked for last time this season in late June. 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. The boat ramps are not accessible at current reservoir elevations.
BREITENBUSH RIVER: trout
Regulation changes for 2016 year allow fishing on this river year-round. Trout stocking finished up in early August with a final release of 1,800 hatchery trout. Anglers may keep up to 5 trout per day. Note that the river is closed to salmon fishing year-round.
As the fall season approaches, NF-46 paved road along the Breitenbush River and Clackamas River from Detroit to Clackamas via Estacada is a beautiful drive for a two-hour family outing.
CANBY POND: trout, bass, crappie, bluegill
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: trout
Carmen Reservoir was stocked in early August for the last time this season. Carmen 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
CLACKAMAS RIVER: summer steelhead, spring Chinook, coho
|Steelhead fishing on the Clackamas
-Photo by Jessica Sall-
The very wet weather has finally brought the river up to levels not seen since spring. It was blown out and unfishable for a couple days but was looking better Monday morning. Anglers are still picking up some decent summer steelhead from just above Carver all the way to McIver Park, while coho can be found in the usual spots like the mouth of Rock Creek, Deep Creek, and Eagle Creek where most of these fish are headed.
Clackamas Hatchery has completed spring Chinook spawning for the year and despite a very low return was still able to secure enough eggs to reach the production goal. The hatchery trap was closed for the season last week but a fair number of nice looking summer steelhead are still in the river.
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 Oct. 11 shows river flows up slightly to 1,620 cfs, with a gauge reading of 11.65 feet and the water dropping at 52.5° F. All of the readings come from the Estacada gauge near Milo McIver State Park.
CLEAR LAKE: trout
Clear Lake is open to fishing all year and was stocked in late August for the last time this season. Clear Lake is accessed from Hwy. 126 approximately 70 miles east of Springfield. Boat rentals are available from Linn County’s Clear Lake Resort.
COAST FORK WILLAMETTE RIVER: trout
The Coast Fork Willamette River is open to angling all year and bait use is allowed through Oct. 31. In addition to five hatchery trout, two wild trout may be kept daily. The Coast Fork Willamette River was stocked at several locations near downtown Cottage Grove for the last time this season in early August.
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 POND (ROW RIVER NATURE PARK POND): trout, warmwater species
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 offer wildlife viewing opportunities. The pond with the dock is stocked with trout during the late winter and early spring months.
COTTAGE GROVE RESERVOIR: trout, warmwater species
Cottage Grove Reservoir is south of Cottage Grove and is open to fishing all year. The reservoir was recently stocked with 1,700 trout, including 200 “pounders.” Warmwater fish are also available. Only Lakeside boat ramp is accessible at the current reservoir elevation.
DETROIT RESERVOIR: trout, kokanee
Reservoir elevation is about 45 feet below conservation pool and only Mongold low-water boat ramp is currently usable. Water levels are tracking very close to the anticipated USACE ‘Rule Curve’. The reservoir was stocked Oct. 10 with 7,000 legal rainbow trout. Many of these fish will be holding over in the cooler, deeper water or near drop-offs and other structure, making a fall visit to Detroit Reservoir worthwhile. Most kokanee have adopted spawning colors in preparation for their annual spawning run.
DEXTER RESERVOIR: trout
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 stocked in late September with 4,600 rainbow trout. This was the last stocking this season. 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 recently stocked with 1,750 fish, including 200 larger fish. Only Baker Bay boat ramp is accessible at the current reservoir elevation.
-Photo by Rick Swart-
DORMAN POND: trout
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: coho
The creek has been rising and dropping rapidly with the recent unsettled weather but when it’s fishable anglers have been landing some nice coho from below Bonnie Lure Park all the way up to the hatchery. As of early last week over 2,000 coho had made it into the hatchery holding pond and there are surely a few more in after the past weekend.
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. Be aware that hunting season has started on the wildlife area. A valid wildlife area parking permit is required.
ESTACADA LAKE: trout
Stocked the week of Sept. 19 with 1,750 legal-sized rainbow trout. Estacada Lake has been stocked almost weekly since spring, with releases ranging from 1,800 to 2,000 fish per release. It is also 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.
FALL CREEK: trout
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. Five hatchery trout and an additional two wild trout may be harvested daily.
FALL CREEK RESERVOIR: trout
Fall Creek Reservoir was last stocked in mid-late April and will not be stocked again this season. Only North Shore boat ramp is accessible at the current reservoir elevation.
FARADAY LAKE: trout
Stocked the week of Sept. 19 with 1,750 legal-sized rainbow trout. The lake was also stocked recently with “recycled” summer steelhead from Clackamas hatchery,
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. 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. Reservoir levels are dropping in order to provide winter storage. At the moment only the boat ramp at Sunnyside Park is available to launch boats and this ramp is only barely in the water, please exercise caution.
-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. Reservoir levels are dropping in order to provide winter storage. At the moment only the boat ramp at Sunnyside Park is available to launch boats.
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. A final stocking of 5,000 hatchery trout was released the last week of September.
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
Kokanee season is now over as the adults are staging near the creeks in preparation for their spawning run. Trout as well as bass are another option for anglers. Look for them near ledges and drop-offs as well as near underwater structure. Reservoir elevation is currently about 60 feet below normal having shown a slight rise during the last week. Thistle Creek boat ramp is currently available for boaters, check ahead to ensure the ramp is still useable for the day of your visit. Please be cautious driving along Quartzville Creek Road due to ongoing construction adding wider shoulders, major patching, and three new rest stops. Speed limits have been reduced to 30 m.p.h. in several sections. Construction is nearly completed and improvements are significant.
HALDEMAN POND: trout
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.
HARRIET LAKE: trout
Stocked the week of Aug. 29 with 2,000 legal-sized trout and 666 trophy 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.
HARTMAN POND: trout, crappie, bass, catfish
This is a year-round warmwater and spring trout fishing pond in the Columbia River Gorge, with easy access for non-boating anglers just off Interstate 84. It was stocked with legal- and trophy-sized trout in the spring and also supports year-round populations of crappie, bass and catfish. 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
-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 Sept. 26 with 4,000 legal-sized rainbow trout. This large lake near Forest Grove is one of Oregon’s premier warmwater fishing locations, with populations of record-class largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, crappie, and bullhead. It also supports a resident population of native cutthroat trout and is frequently stocked with hatchery rainbow trout, including trophy and brood stock.
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)
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, particularly now that more fall-like weather has moved in. Snow levels last week were approaching 7,000 feet so be prepared and watch the local forecast before heading out. With the change in weather, the danger of wildfires is declining. You should continue to check on restrictions regarding open campfires.
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 very chilly this time of year, particularly now that fall weather has moved in. Snow levels last week were approaching 5,500 feet so be prepared and watch the local forecast before heading out.
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
The reservoir received an unscheduled stocking of 800 extra-large fin-clipped rainbow trout (nearly a pound), which were released Oct. 11 at Packard Boat Landing.
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 and fall catchable trout releases.
Trout and salmon must be adipose-fin clipped to be harvested. Large native trout are available for catch-and-release fishing. Only Packard boat launch is accessible at the current reservoir elevation.
HILLS CREEK and Hills Creek Tributaries
Hills Creek is not stocked with hatchery fish. The stream is open to angling all year and anglers may keep up to two wild trout per day, 8-inch minimum length. Use of bait is allowed through the end of October.
HORSESHOE LAKE: 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 in the spring with legal- and trophy-sized rainbow trout. 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. The next trout stocking is scheduled for December.
LEABURG LAKE: trout
Leaburg Lake is open to angling all year. Bait use is allowed April 22-Oct. 31. The lake was stocked in late August for the last time this season. Only hatchery fish may be kept. All wild trout must be released. Leaburg Dam is generally closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic weekdays from 8 a.m.-noon and 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. through October. There are no bridge closures scheduled for Thursday and Friday, Oct. 20 and 21.
Check EWEB’s website for updates.
MCKENZIE RIVER below Leaburg Lake: trout, salmon, steelhead
The McKenzie River below Leaburg Lake is stocked with trout from 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 last boat-stocked in early September. 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.
Steelhead anglers have been having success following fish movement with recent rains. Leaburg Dam is generally closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic weekdays from 8 a.m. - noon and 1 - 4 p.m. through October. There are no bridge closures scheduled for Thursday and Friday, Oct. 20 and 21. 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 was boat-stocked in mid-September from Finn Rock downstream to Goodpasture Landing with a total of 2,750 larger rainbow trout, including 185 “pounders”. This was the last stocking of the season. 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. Steelhead anglers continue to be successful 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: coho, steelhead
Like all rivers and streams in the area the Molalla River water levels are up considerably compared to earlier this month. Chinook passage has ended at Willamette Falls with springer counting over for the season; these count numbers were 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.
A few late hatchery springers might still be pooled up in the Molalla along with some hatchery summer steelhead that slip into the lower river seeking cooler water, but quality of these salmon at this late date will be highly questionable at best. There could be a few coho making it into the lower river but passage numbers at the falls indicate that numbers into the Molalla would be small.
Late hatchery springers should still be pooled up in the Molalla along with some hatchery summer steelhead that slip into the lower river seeking cooler water, but quality of these fish at this late date will be highly questionable. Spring Chinook passage numbers at the Willamette Falls ladder reached 30,317 through Aug. 15, the final day for springer counts in 2016. At this date of the season there could be some late springer fishing available from the Trout Creek acclimation pond returns.
MT HOOD POND: trout, crappie, bluegill
ODFW will host a free fishing event Saturday, Oct. 22 from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. ODFW will stock the pond with trout prior to the event, and will provide loaner rods and reels to those who want to try their luck at catching trout.
Stocked the week of Oct. 17 with 450 trout. Mt. Hood Pond is located on the Mt. Hood Community College campus in Gresham, at 26000 SE Stark St.
NORTH FORK RESERVOIR: trout
Due to low water levels, the release of 3,500 trout scheduled for the week of Sept. 19 was redirected to Estacada and Faraday lakes.
The Promontory Marina boat ramp and lower boat ramp are now closed due to low water. The reservoir has been lowered below the ramps to allow PGE to conduct a salmon habitat restoration project. Both boat ramps are expected to reopen Oct. 24.
This is a 350-acre reservoir of the Clackamas River behind North Fork Dam approximately 5.2 miles east of Estacada, Ore.
OLALLIE LAKE: trout
Olallie Lake has been stocked with trout numerous times this season. 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.
-Photo by Rick Swart, ODFW-
QUARTZVILLE CREEK: trout
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. Please be cautious driving along Quartzville Creek Road due to ongoing construction adding wider shoulders, major patching, and three new rest stops. Speed limits have been reduced to 30 m.p.h. in several sections. Construction is nearly finished and improvements have been significant.
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. Please be cautious driving along Quartzville Creek Road due to ongoing construction adding wider shoulders, major patching, and three new rest stops. Speed limits have been reduced to 30 m.p.h. in several sections.
SALMON CREEK: trout
Salmon Creek near Oakridge is open to angling all year. Bait use is allowed April 22 - October 31. Salmon Creek was stocked in mid-August for the last time this season. 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 five hatchery trout.
SALT CREEK: trout
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-Oct. 31. Two wild trout may be kept per day, 8-inch minimum length.
SANDY RIVER: summer steelhead, coho
The Sandy has more than enough water flowing in it after recent very wet weather, leaving it unfishable for a few days. There are good numbers of coho in the sytem from Lewis and Clark Park all the way up to the hatchery; more than 2,500 fish have come into the trap with several hundred being donated to the local food banks. When the river is clearing and dropping anglers have been able to get into some decent coho fishing from Dabney on up to Cedar Creek.
USGS hydrological data for Oct. 17 shows the Sandy flows up to 6,010 cfs, with a gauge reading of 11.70 feet and the water temperature dropping a bit at 48.5° F. All of the readings come from the Estacada gauge near Milo McIver State Park.
SANTIAM RIVER (NORTH FORK): steelhead, Chinook
Returns of adult steelhead have all but ceased this late in the season at Willamette Falls but the overall numbers show a huge improvement from last year, especially with summer steelhead. Many of these fish are destined for the Santiam basin. About 5,200 summer steelhead have passed the Bennett dams in Stayton. A few coho salmon have also arrived and are available to anglers below Stayton. Angling for coho above the Stayton-Scio highway bridge to the deadline at Big Cliff Dam is now open until Dec 31. Angling for hatchery Chinook salmon is now open until Dec. 31 along the same stretch of river.
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 river flow is at 8,240 cfs as of Oct. 17 following the recent storm activity.
Anglers may keep up to five hatchery trout from the mouth to Big Cliff dam through Oct. 31.
SANTIAM RIVER (NORTH FORK) above DETROIT:
Regulation changes for 2016 makes this section a year-round fishery. The river was stocked one final time in early August 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 out of Foster Dam have increased somewhat during the last week and current flows as of Oct. 17 are approximately 2,960 cfs as measured at Waterloo. Current conditions
Hatchery Chinook season is is now open through Dec. 31 to the deadline below Foster Dam. There are still plenty of summer steelhead in the river with most fish found above Waterloo. Further downstream below Lebanon there is solitude, smallmouth bass and perhaps the occasional coho salmon waiting for the intrepid angler. Recycling of fish downstream has ended for the season. Best times to catch these fish are early and late in the day. Anglers may keep up to five hatchery trout below Foster dam through Oct. 31.
-Photo by Rick Swart, ODFW-
SHERIDAN POND: trout
Stocked several times in the spring with trout of various sizes. 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.
SILVER CREEK RESERVOIR: trout, catfish
Stocked in June 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.
SMALL FRY LAKE: trout
Stocked the week of Sept. 5 with 200 trout. This is a youth-only fishing pond that was stocked earlier this season, and some of those fish may still be available, although anglers can expect heavy aquatic vegetation this time of year. Small Fry is located next to Promontory Park and North Fork Reservoir near Estacada. Fishing restricted to youths 17 and under. Cleaning station, restroom nearby.
SMITH RESERVOIR: trout
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. Smith River and its tributaries above Smith Reservoir are open to angling all year. Two wild fish (8-inch minimum length) may be harvested per day and bait use is allowed through Oct. 31.
ST. LOUIS PONDS: trout, bass, crappie, bluegill, yellow perch, channel catfish
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 two miles above the upper end of Foster Reservoir. The stocking season at Sunnyside Pond has ended for the remainder of the year 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 I-5, 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 was stocked with 5,000 trophy-sized trout this year. Timothy also produced some nice catches of kokanee this year. 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: trout
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 in late July for the last time this season.
-Photo by Andrew Jesion-
TRILLIUM LAKE: trout
Stocked the week of Sept. 26 with 3,000 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
Trout stocking is finished for the season. This 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.
WALLING POND: trout, crappie, bass
The pond was stocked on Oct. 10 with 400 legal and 50 larger rainbow trout with another stocking scheduled for the end of the month. This is an eight-acre privately owned pond located in Salem at the northeast corner of McGilchrist and 16th Streets, S.E. Good angling opportunities remain for warm water species and that occasional larger hold-over trout.
WALTER WIRTH LAKE: trout, crappie, bass
The pond was stocked on Oct. 10 with 1,700 legal and 150 larger rainbow trout with another stocking scheduled for the end of the month. Walter Wirth is a 20-acre lake located within the City of Salem’s Cascades Gateway Park. Good angling opportunities remain for warm water species and that occasional larger hold-over trout.
WAVERLY POND: trout, bluegill, catfish
Waverly Pond is located in Albany and is regularly stocked in fall, winter and spring. The pond was stocked on Oct. 10 with 1,000 legal and 100 larger rainbow trout. For summer fishing it has bluegill and catfish available. Good angling opportunities remain for these warm water species and that occasional larger hold-over trout. 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, warm water species
A few coho have been picked up on the Willamette near the mouth of the Clackamas River but this is a tough fishery to work as most of the fish tend to move quickly into the lower Clackamas in these higher flows. Give it another month or so and a few early winter steelhead could begin to show, usually around Thanksgiving weekend.
Anglers will find there are still 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. Catch-and-release fishing for sturgeon remains as another option for Willamette River anglers.
The summer steelhead counts continue at Willamette Falls with the Oct. 14 cumulative passage showing 21,705 while adult coho passage was at 2,203 and adult fall Chinook passage was 1,022.
USGS hydrological data for the Willamette River on Oct. 17 has flows increasing to 26,500 cfs, the water temperature falling to 55°F, and visibility dropping all the way down to 2.0 ft.
NOTICE TO LOWER WILLAMETTE RIVER BOATERS: The boat ramp at Willamette Park will be closed through Oct. 31 for dredging and boat ramp improvements. For for alternate launches and more information visit City of Portland Parks & Recreation/ Willamette Park.
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.
Willamette Zone Hunting
OPEN: GENERAL WESTERN OREGON DEER SEASON, COUGAR, BLACK BEAR, CONTROLLED ANTLERLESS DEER, CONTROLLED YOUTH ANTLERLESS ELK, FOREST GROUSE, QUAIL, MOURNING DOVE, CROW, PHEASANT, CASCADE ELK (closes oct. 21), DUCK
NW PERMIT GOOSE ZONE OPENS OCT. 22
Please remember to check with the landowner for access restrictions prior to entering private lands. Private timberlands access policy. Hunters are reminded to have permission to hunt or make sure hunting is allowed before accessing private lands.
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.
|Summer Blacktail Buck
-Photo by David Leer-
CASCADE ELK season runs Oct. 15-21. Declining elk numbers within the Mt. Hood National Forest will make for poor elk hunting on public lands and hunter success should be average on lower elevation private timberlands. Hunters heading for the Mt. Hood National Forest will find elk highly scattered and difficult to locate. Places to look include Timothy Lake, Rhododendron Ridge and Granite Peaks. At lower elevations, hunters should explore Butte Creek, Upper Molalla River and Eagle Creek. Hunters will have the best chance for success hunting away from roads where elk experience fewer disturbances. Elk are interspersed throughout the Willamette Zone with larger numbers on private lands at lower elevations close to agricultural valleys.
Contacting private landowners prior to the hunting season will be the key to finding these elk. Hunters are reminded to always ask for permission before entering private lands. Industrial forests can also provide suitable habitat for elk and good visibility and access for hunters, but may receive a lot of hunting pressure. Hunters will find low numbers of elk on U.S. Forest Service lands as bull elk will be widely scattered and difficult to locate. Hunters will need to find fresh tracks and other sign to ensure that animals are in the area. Regenerating clear-cuts, commercially thinned stands with palatable understory, south-facing slopes, burned areas, and wet meadows along streams and rivers are productive locations for elk.
WESTERN OREGON GENERAL RIFLE DEER. The first half of the season was very good for hunters due to the rain events that kept deer active. The recent wind storms made hunting challenging for a couple of days but the wind blew some of the leaves off of trees and brush making it easier to spot deer. If you don’t mind getting wet, bucks are more likely to go on the move under the security of rain and fog.
Deer can be found early in the morning and late in the afternoon feeding along mid-elevation clearcuts or thinned areas that have varied densities of young shrubs and trees, which provide forage and hiding cover. During the heat of the day, they will typically bed in shady, cool locations such as North Slope timber stands. On cool days deer may spend the day bedding in brushy clear cuts or brushy burned areas. Hunters should use binoculars to glass for animals in the early morning hours and hunt bedding areas during the heat of the day. As the temperatures begin to cool, animal activity during the day will begin to increase.
Private timber company lands can be productive places to hunt if the landowner is allowing hunting access. Please be advised that the Cascade Buck season closes on Oct. 14 and will reopen Oct. 22. Coast Buck will remain open until the season closes on Nov. 4. Please review the 2016 Big Game Hunting Regulations before your hunting trip to ensure that you are familiar with all of the requirements.
Some CONTROLLED ANTLERLESS DEER hunts are currently open for those hunters that have drawn tags. Hunters that did not purchase their tag before the hunt began can still purchase a tag from some ODFW offices provided they sign an avadavat and pay the after-the-deadline fee. Please review the 2016 Big Game Hunting Regulations before your hunting trip to ensure the dates of the hunt you drew and to ensure that you are familiar with all of the requirements.
CONTROLLED YOUTH ANTLERLESS ELK (limited entry) hunt open on Aug. 1 as part of a program to encourage youth participation in big game hunting. Youths must be accompanied by an adult at least 21 years of age. Youth hunters are required to wear a hunter (fluorescent) orange exterior garment or hat when hunting game mammals or upland game birds (except turkey) with any firearm. Hunters that did not purchase their tag before the hunt began can still purchase a tag from some ODFW offices provided they sign an avadavat and pay the after-the-deadline fee. Please review the 2016 Big Game Hunting Regulations before your hunting trip to ensure that you are familiar with all of the requirements.
RETURN BLACK-TAILED DEER TEETH!
Successful black-tailed deer hunters are asked to return a tooth from their deer. See how to properly remove black-tailed deer teeth. Postage-paid envelopes are available at license sales agents or ODFW offices. If you can’t pick up an envelope, send the tooth to ODFW, Wildlife Population Laboratory, 7118 NE Vandenberg Ave, Adair Village, OR 97330. Include the following information with the tooth: Your name and address, sex and species of animal (e.g. buck deer), antler points, hunter ID#, date harvested, Wildlife Management Unit or Hunt where harvested, drainage or landmark. ODFW staff use the teeth to determine the age of the animals, which is needed for population modeling and management efforts. Hunters will receive an age card in the mail telling them how old the harvested animal was. Age cards may take up to 12 months to receive.
Voluntary Hunter CWD Samples Wanted!
Hunters are encouraged to voluntarily bring the heads from any harvested deer or elk into the ODFW offices in Clackamas or Sauvie Island so that samples can be taken for ongoing Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) monitoring. Call ahead to ensure someone will be around to collect the sample or to make an appointment for another day.
PLEASE REPORT OBSERVATIONS OF ELK WITH HOOF DISEASE
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 all four hooves in a plastic bag and place in a cool area (i.e Cooler with ice) 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 Wildlife.Health@state.or.us.
- Report your observation by filling out online form
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. As other big game seasons are starting this fall be sure to have a cougar tag with you while in the field to avoid missed opportunities. Please review the 2016 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
-Oregon Fish and Wildlife-
GENERAL FALL BLACK BEAR season is open. Most of the wild berry crops are disappearing for the year which makes it increasingly difficult for hunters to target bears. Hunters targeting bears will want to look for abandoned homesteads with old fruit trees remaining or look for nut producing trees such as oak. Many of the bears taken during the remainder of the season will be found incidentally by hunters targeting deer or elk.
Successful bear hunters will need to check-in any bear taken at an ODFW office within 10 days of harvest. 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 bear checked-in. Be sure to bring in the skull (The skull must be unfrozen) without the hide, the spring bear tag, and harvest location information. Biologists recommend propping the bear’s mouth open with a stick after harvest; it makes for easier tooth collection. Bear hunters are reminded that it is helpful to submit the reproductive tract of any female bear taken. The reproductive tract provides valuable information on the number and frequency of cubs born annually in Oregon and is a critical part of ODFW’s black bear population models. As other big game seasons are starting this fall be sure to have a fall bear tag with you while in the field to avoid missed opportunities. Please review the 2016 Big Game Hunting Regulations before your hunting trip to ensure that you are familiar with all of the requirements.
COYOTES Remember to ask for permission to hunt on private lands. Hunter can find coyotes around meadows and brush piles where mice and rabbits are found. Use predator calls to lure coyotes in close can be an effective method for harvesting coyotes. Try calling in the early morning or late afternoon when temperatures are cool. Hunters need a valid hunting license to hunt coyotes on public property.
GOOSE season is open for Period 1 Oct. 22 – 30 in the Northwest Permit Zone. Goose numbers continue to increase and hunters should find good hunting opportunities in the northwestern portion of the state. Hunters who have scouted out fields with actively feeding geese will experience the best success. Goose hunters are still required to pass the Northwest Oregon Goose Identification Test to hunt. Please review the information provided in the 2016-2017 Oregon Game Bird Regulations for more details on the major changes to goose hunting regulations in Northwest Oregon.
- The season for Dusky Canada geese has been closed. It is a wildlife violation to shoot a Dusky Canada goose.
- There is no quota for Dusky Canada geese, since no harvest is allowed.
- There are no longer goose check stations.
- Northwest Oregon Goose Permits are still required but harvest cards are not required.
- The former Northwest General Goose Zone has been combined with the Northwest Permit Zone.
- Legal shooting hours for geese in the Northwest Permit Zone is listed on page 23 of the 2016-2017 Oregon Game Bird Regulations.
- All days of the week (during the open NW Permit season) are open to goose hunting.
- Geese must be intact and fully feathered in the field and while in transit to the place of permanent residence of the possessor.
DUCK season opened on Oct 15 in Zone 1. Hunters experienced a great weekend opener with high winds and rainy conditions. Forecasted weather conditions look to be favorable for the upcoming week and weekend with rainy conditions which help move more ducks into the area. Hunters are reminded there will be a short two day break in the duck season with a closure of Oct. 31 and Nov. 1. Goose season in the Northwest Permit Zone will not open until Oct. 22. Hunters will want to scout their hunting spot before the season opener. Remember that the head or one fully feathered wing must be left attached to all game birds in the field or while in transit to the place of permanent residence of the possessor. Please review the 2016-2017 Oregon Game Bird Regulations for more information including legal shooting hours.
FEE PHEASANT HUNTING runs Oct. 1-31 at EE Wilson Wildlife Area. ODFW releases pheasants during this season; hunters need the $17 Western Oregon Fee Pheasant tag to hunt. Regular pheasant seasons open Oct. 8 but there are few wild pheasant in Western Oregon.
FOREST GROUSE and QUAIL seasons opened on Sept. 1 in Western Oregon. The forest grouse group collectively includes the Ruffed and Blue (dusky/sooty) grouse species. Look for grouse along the edges of timber patches during morning and evening times. Hunters will want to target hardwood riparian areas for ruffed grouse and mature timber areas or ridge tops for blue grouse. Remember that the head or one fully feathered wing must be left attached to all game birds in the field or while in transit to the place of permanent residence of the possessor. Review the information provided in the 2016-17 Oregon Game Bird Regulations for more details.
YOUR PARTICIPATION IS GREATLY NEEDED!
ODFW would appreciate your help in obtaining important information about the health of grouse and mountain quail populations. Hunters can help by donating a wing and tail from harvested grouse and mountain quail. Grouse and mountain quail wings and tails provide ODFW biologist important information about the health of populations. What to do; remove one entire wing and whole tail including small feathers, place in paper collecting bag provided at ODFW officers or use your own (1 bird per bag), mark the bag with species, date harvested, county of harvest and general location, and drop it off at local ODFW offices or at designated collection sites in wing collection barrels. Be on the lookout for these statewide wing collection barrels this fall. If there is a delay in dropping off your specimen, please freeze it.
10 year old Emily used the "mentored youth" program to take her 1st tom with a Rossi 20 gauge shotgun.
-Photo by Will Waddell-
Turkey hunting kicks off Oct. 15. Finding a place to hunt is challenging in Northwest Oregon. Most turkeys are found on private lands and access is limited. Turkeys are primarily found on private lands in Yamhill County and are not readily available to the public. Those hunters without local contacts should be out talking to landowners to acquire access to the few and widely scattered flocks. Some hunters knock on landowners’ doors where they see turkeys and ask permission to hunt. Remember you must ask permission to hunt on private land and build good relationships with landowners if you expect to come back and hunt next year. To find public land opportunities, consult Bureau of Land Management (BLM) or U.S. Forest Service maps and look for pockets of public land off the main roads, but adjacent to agricultural land and mixed hardwood forests since turkeys key in on acorns, but also feed in meadows on grubs and other insects. Pay special attention to river bottoms in these areas too. At this time of year, turkeys are found at lower elevations in areas with mixed hardwoods (such as oak savannah) and pasture—the type of habitat found mostly on private lands, although some BLM and Forest Service lands feature this habitat.
MOURNING DOVE– Open statewide from Sept. 1 - Oct. 30. Scout for habitat with plenty of perch locations near open areas. Many doves leave Oregon once fall weather starts approaching so hunting is best early in the season. Remember that the head or one fully feathered wing must be left attached to all game birds in the field or while in transit to the place of permanent residence of the possessor. Review the information provided in the 2016-17 Oregon Game Bird Regulations for more details. A larger and similar looking dove – the Eurasian collared dove is an invasive species and can be hunted year-round with just a hunting license.
FIELD CARE OF HARVESTED WILDLIFE
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.
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.
Don’t forget to report your hunt results. Anyone who purchases a big game or turkey tag must report hunt results online or by phone. Reporting is required even if you did not fill your tag or go hunting. More information
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.
Hunters should be preparing now for upcoming rifle big game hunting seasons this fall. Sight-in and practice with your firearms to ensure that when you do get the chance to harvest an animal you are confident in your shooting skills. Many of the local gun ranges will have public sight-in days where you can practice your shooting. Local sight-in day
Be safe, be responsible and be legal.
Willamette Zone Wildlife Viewing
|Bull Rosevelt elk at the Oregon Coast
- Photo by Ryan Hoeft-
Elk are in the rut
The elk breeding season or "rut" has begun and should last into the first couple weeks of October. Bulls are bugling now, especially from dusk to dawn and will battle for dominance. The whole process can be quite a sensory experience for the ears and eyes! Take a drive to Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area near Seaside for a great elk viewing opportunity.
Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area directions
Fall is the time to see salmon spawning
Chinook salmon are currently spawning in rivers around the region. Look for these impressive fish in the McKenzie, Sandy, Clackamas, and other streams. You can also see them at ODFW’s Bonneville, Clackamas, and Sandy and other ODFW hatcheries. Please remember to be respectful of the spawning fish and to observe them quietly without disturbing them.
Valleywide Wildlife Viewing
Henry Hagg Lake
Henry Hagg Lake is a great place to view large numbers of Canada geese during their migration. Large flocks of birds move into the lake just before dark and spend the night. They leave early in the morning.
Species to view at Henry Hagg Lake
Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge
Oaks bottom is a good location to see Great Blue Heron, the official city bird and the star of the show. Oaks Bottom is one of the favorite places of a score of these impressive birds because of its proximity to one of the rookeries on Ross Island.
Audubon Nature Sanctuary, Forest Park
Nestled against Forest Park, five minutes from downtown Portland, is Audubon’s 150-acre, free-to-the-public Nature Sanctuary—a showcase for native flora and fauna. It has over four miles of forested hiking trails for you to enjoy year 'round. Trails are open dawn to dusk every day. Get directions.
Sauvie Island Wildlife Area
-Photo by Kathy Munsel, ODFW-
Sauvie Island Wildlife Area
The Sauvie Island Wildlife Area Eastside units and Westside, Oak Island and North units are closed Oct. 1 and will remain closed through April 15, 2017. Rentenaar Road, Eastside Viewing Platform and Coon Point will remain open for viewing. The trail to Warrior Rock Lighthouse remains open and offers a great hike along with bird viewing. All open areas are on Reeder Road and require a parking permit.
When planning your trip to the island please see the current Game Bird Regulations for the hunt schedule and plan accordingly, as the waterfowl season will open Oct. 15
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 these creatures. Viewing opportunities are plentiful as the fall migration is upon us with a variety of waterfowl and migratory birds currently returning to the island, including geese, pelicans and peak numbers of sandhill cranes. Bald eagles are starting to show up on the wildlife area as well. Be sure to bring your binoculars.
Bird watchers are reminded to keep safety first. While the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area is a tremendous bird watching area, unfortunately, some bird watcher become so excited by a sight that they stop in the middle of the road to observe. Obviously, this creates an unnecessary hazard and is extremely dangerous because the road is narrow and has blind curves. So please be safe and park only in designated areas.
Sauvie Island Wildlife Area is located on Sauvie Island, only 10 miles north of Portland off Hwy. 30. A parking permit is required for the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area and can be purchased at ODFW license vendors or any ODFW field office.
Silver Creek Falls State Park
There are lots of birds to see and hear including American dippers and mountain quail. Listen for owls in the evening. Nestled in the lower elevation of Oregon's Cascade Mountains lies a temperate rain forest. It is here that the Trail of Ten Falls/Canyon Trail can be found. The Canyon Trail and the falls descend to a forest floor covered with ferns, mosses, and wildflowers. You will also find stands of Douglas fir, hemlock, and cedar. While thousands visit the park every year, it is large enough for you to find quiet places to sit and watch for birds. Directions, maps and a bird list
- Photo by Greg Gillson-
EE Wilson Wildlife Area
There are lots of deer, shorebirds and waterfowl to see on the Wildlife Area — look for goose, mallard, hooded merganser and wood duck broods. Wildlife viewing remains good for waterfowl and shorebirds. Neotropical migrants in the area include yellow-breasted chat, American goldfinch, various swallows, warblers, thrush, kinglet and common yellowthroat.
Note: Dogs are required to be on a leash inside the wildlife area boundary. Rifles and pistols are prohibited year round. An ODFW wildlife area parking permit is required.
EE Wilson Wildlife Area is located 10 miles north of Corvallis on Hwy. 99W. Turn east on Camp Adair Rd.
Foster Dam and Reservoir
Viewing sites are at the boat ramps, roadsides and a county park. Deep water above the dam drawsmigrant common loon and horned,eared, Western, Clark’s and (rarely)red-necked grebes in migration, along with pied-billed grebe, American coot, common merganser, and other diving ducks. Red-breasted merganser, surf scoter, long-tailed duck, and migrant terns may drop in as rarities. U.S. Hwy 20 at the E end of Sweet Home, take 60th Ave/Foster Dam Rd N to North River Dr.
Fern Ridge Wildlife Area
Viewing Platfrom at Fern RIdge
- Photo by Chris Schubothe, ODFW-
The 5,010-acre Fern Ridge Wildlife Area is managed primarily for waterfowl wintering and nesting. More than 250 species of birds use the area during different seasons of the year, making this an excellent birding destination. Shorebirds, raptors and wintering waterfowl including ducks, geese and swans can be seen during late fall and winter. Lake and marsh habitats provide excellent viewing opportunities. Wintering waterfowl are best viewed on open water areas of the reservoir and in flooded cropland fields on the southeast portion of the area. Seasonal public access restrictions apply to protect wintering waterfowl. Maps and bird checklists are available at area headquarters and parking area information kiosks. There are boat and canoe access sites and nature trails to provide lake and wildlife area access during spring and summer months.
Directions – Fern Ridge Wildlife Area surrounds Fern Ridge Reservoir and is located five miles west of Eugene on either side of Hwy. 126. Cantrell Road borders the area on the south. Access points are located around the perimeter of Fern Ridge Reservoir with parking areas, canoe access sites and parks providing lake and wildlife area access.
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