North and South Santiam River: Regular fishing hours have been restored on the Santiam and other rivers around the state as the ban on fishing after 2 p.m. has been lifted.
Fishing for Chinook is now closed until Oct. 15 to protect spawning adults, but steelhead are still available to anglers, mostly in the upper sections. A recent surge in migrating adult summer steelhead over Willamette Falls provide some action in lower sections of the river as well. In addition, coho are beginning to show up in the basin as well. As a reminder, fishing for coho below the Stayton-Scio bridge is open year-round, but above the bridge is closed to coho angling until Oct. 15. Since this is peak spawning time for adult Chinook, anglers are reminded to avoid targeting or approaching actively spawning fish in order to minimize stress.
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. Trout fishing opened May 23. Anglers are allowed to keep up to 5 fin-clipped trout per day through Oct. 31.
River levels best for fishing are below 3,000 cfs at the Mehama gauge (currently the Mehama gauge is around 1,430 cfs as of Sept. 14
Above Detroit - This section of the river is currently open to trout fishing and will remain open until Oct. 31. The river received its final stocking of 3,000 legal size rainbow trout for the year the last week of July. Holdover and resident trout can be found throughout the river. Anglers may keep up to 5 trout per day. This section of river is closed to salmon fishing.
South Fork - Chinook fishing is now closed on the South Santiam, but there are still summer steelhead available to the angler, including several hundred new fish that have only recently arrived in the basin.
Best sections to fish are from Wiley Creek to Pleasant Valley boat ramps, around Waterloo County Park, and from Lebanon down to the confluence with the North Santiam. Extra water from upstream reservoirs have been released in recent days causing a small increase in flows up to 1,100 cfs at Waterloo.
Since this is peak spawning time for adult Chinook, anglers are reminded to avoid targeting or approaching actively spawning fish in order to minimize stress.