Effort on the Clackamas is Picking Up

Clackamas River - Estacada, OR (Clackamas County)

by OR Department of Fish & Wildlife Staff

Winter steelhead are beginning to enter the Clackamas and numbers should improve over the next couple of months. The river is currently running low and cold, so consider downsizing your gear and slowing down your presentation while fishing on this stream.  Also, try to fish where the fish are – in other words, keep moving to spots that look like they might hold/hide fish. Warm days with warming water tends to get fish moving so keep an eye on the weather and watch for a warm rain to stimulate fish movement.

In the meantime expect to find most of the winters in the lower 10 to 15 miles of river. Concentrate downstream of Eagle Creek and stay up-to-date on fish passage at Willamette Falls, which will provide an indicator of fish movement generally in local rivers. Effort on the Clackamas is picking up and some anglers have reported catching winter steelhead.

Trout fishing is now catch-and-release only due to presence of wild steelhead smolts that could be impacted by anglers targeting trout.

USGS hydrological data for Jan. 14 shows river flows at 1,910 cfs water temperature at 40°F, and the gage at 11.93 ft. All of the readings come from the Estacada gauge near Milo McIver State Park. Hydrologic data and river forecasts can also be accessed on the NOAA/National Weather Service NW River Forecast Center -- NW River Forecast Center.

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