WILLAMETTE RIVER: Late season spring Chinook fishing in the lower Willamette near St Johns has come to a close as the river reaches temperatures into the upper 70s and the fish have moved upstream. There is a slight possibility of hooking into summer steelhead near the mouth of the Clackamas River where the cooler water is coming into the Willamette.
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.
As of Aug. 15 the passage count of spring Chinook adults at Willamette Falls stood at 30,317 fish, which is the unofficial final passage number for 2016 as springer counts come to an end. The summer steelhead counts continue at Willamette Falls with the August 19 cumulative passage showing 21,158.
USGS hydrological data for the Willamette River on Aug. 22 shows flows hitting near summer lows at 5,700 cfs, the water temperature bumped up to 78°F, and visibility extremely clear at 10.0 ft.
Middle Fork - 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.