Deschutes River Fishing Report

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Starting at Little Lava Lake in central Oregon, this 252 mile, southward flowing River, takes a turn at the Wikiup Reservoir, defies gravity and flows north until it empties into the Columbia River. Archaeologists will tell that for eons, the Deschutes was an important route for Native Americans as they traveled to and from the Columbia. Later, in the 19th century, Historians will tell you that the river was an important marker for pioneers, eventually becoming part of the famous Oregon Trail.


Today the river is considered an important part of our national heritage due to its extraordinary beauty and bountiful fisheries. Over 145 miles of the river have been designated as a National Recreational River while another 30 miles are crowned with National Wild and Scenic River distinction. Typically thought of in three sections – upper, middle and lower - the river passes through high arid country, flower filled meadows, and steep canyons.

As an official “blue ribbon” river, the Deschutes is perhaps most famous for its Columbia River redband trout, known locally as redsides. These trout have an unusual, bright red stripe that covers the bottom half of their bodies; the spots on the upper body are darker than other wild rainbow. Depending on where you are on the river, there can be as many as 1,700 redbands per mile, ranging from 8 – 16 inches. 


Warm Springs to Macks Canyon is the preferred stretch for catching redbands. There is good redband fishing along Warm Springs Tribal Land but special permits are required. The section from Pelton Dam to the River’s mouth has high concentrations of wild trout, including summer steelhead. The entire river is managed as a wild trout fishery.
 
Additional Information
Tributaries:
Columbia River
Source:
Little Lava Lake, Cascade Range
Mouth:
Columbia River
Length:
252 miles
Seasonal Conditions
Season
Hatches
SpringBWOs, Midges, March Browns, Salmon Flies, PMDs, Green Drakes
SummerCaddis, PMDs, Crane Flies, Mahogany Duns, Golden Stones, Hoppers
FallCaddis, Mahogany Duns, BWOs, Midges
WinterNymphs
Latest Guide Fishing Reports
Guide Reports
Water levels are still high, but not enough to scare off anglers. While not necessarily ideal conditions, the fishing is still pretty good. The river is down 100 cfs to 400 (normally ... morearound this time of year it’s in the 90-150 range). A lot is coming from the Little Deschutes. Once the runoff winds down, fishing should be excellent.

We’ve had success on the river with Jigs and Micro Mayfly Nymphs. Also heard someone caught a decent sized brown with a sculpin over near Tumalo. High angler traffic in the Lower Bridge area due to reports of strong March Brown hatches along with Grey Caddis, Midges, and some Blue Winged Olives.
Fishing Water Report:
Date:
Friday, 21 Apr, 2017
Fish Caught:
4-8 fish
Current Forecast
Water Flow
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Top Fly Fishing River
Rated as one of the top trout fishing rivers in the US byBob Mallard, author of 25 Best Towns - Fly Fishing for Trout
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