WILLAMETTE RIVER: Angling activity on the lower Willamette has been slow, typical for late August and early September while the warm weather brings out large numbers of recreational users. On any given summer day the Willamette River is crowded with boaters and jet skiers, so early morning fishing is the best bet. Now that school has resumed the weekday crowds should lighten some.
Chinook salmon anglers have moved over to the lower Columbia and Buoy 10 but local 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.
Passage counts at Willamette Falls have ended for spring Chinook and switched over to wild fall Chinook. The summer steelhead passage continues however with counts marching on slow but steady; we also had the first coho pass a few days ago. A total of 30,071 adult spring Chinook passed this season while the summer steelhead have reached 21,528 counted up through the Aug 30 date. Through that same August 30 date four coho have also passed. The counts for spring Chinook officially end on Aug. 15 so barring any corrections that will be the final count for 2014.
Tuesday hydrological data shows the Willamette flows at 8,600 cfs, the water temperature steady near 69°, and visibility still at an astoundingly clear 8.5 feet.
The Middle Fork Willamette River above Hills Creek Reservoir is open to catch-and-release fishing. Angling is restricted to flies and lures. The Middle Fork above Hills Creek Reservoir will not be stocked this year. Those fish will instead be released into Hills Creek Reservoir for anglers.