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Welcome to the McKenzie River


The McKenzie  River is one of the most productive trout streams in Western Oregon.  Originating high in the Cascade Mountains, the McKenzie runs from just above Clear Lake for 85 miles where it meets the Willamette River near Eugene.  Along its journey, the McKenzie River drops five-thousand feet in elevation as it flows through ancient forests, agricultural land, and small communities.  The McKenzie ranks as one of the areas best combination trout and steelhead rivers...read more

The Beautiful McKenzie River Valley is a 68 mile long corridor stretching between Sisters on the east and Springfield on the west. Renowned for fishing, the McKenzie River supports spring Chinook salmon, winter steelhead and summer steelhead as well as native rainbow, cutthroat and bull trout. The high lakes have been planted with brown and brook trout, making the McKenzie River Valley a sportsman's paradise....

McKenzie River "Drift boat" plans. This plan set and construction manual will show you how to build a 16' (actually 14'6 stem to stern) McKenzie style drift boat.  This is a super strong hull, based on structural ribs and laminated wood & fiberglass skins.  The hull is far stronger than the typical "stitch & glue/sew" construction seen on many other boats, and is better suited for use on rivers where there are whitewater rapids. read more

McKenzie Hatchery is operated by the State of Oregon, Dept. of Fish & Wildlife  and is located in western Oregon, 22 miles east of Eugene. The McKenzie River originates in the Cascade Range  and empties into the Willamette River which flows northward into the Columbia River. read more

McKenzie River National Recreation Trail # 3507 -read more


The Original McKenzie River drift boat models, drift boat plans, and stories about the boats' origins. Our focus is "eddies of evolution" and the resurrection of boats lost to time. read more

McKenzie River Rafting - The McKenzie River is one of western Oregon's most beautiful streams, as well as one of the region's most popular whitewater rafting trips. Flowing through the McKenzie Valley from its headwaters at Clear Lake, high in the cascades, the McKenzie is a swift, spirited stream. Float with the McKenzie's lively current and you may feel as if you're flying over the riverbed — the water is that clear. Thick fir forests, mild yet enjoyable rapids and easy accessibility are a few of the river's other charms. We offer trips on two sections of the upper McKenzie (beginning at either Paradise or Olallie). Boat either and you'll see the McKenzie at its best. read more

Upper McKenzie River Rafting -rafting, fishing and camping information Helfrich Guide Service

McKenzie Pass Trail map

McKenzie River Guides

McKenzie River Reflections - local News and information

Fly hatch guide for McKenzie River

McKenzie River Real Estate


McKenzie River Blog;

05/10/05 - May 10, 2005 doublegun

Hunting, fishing, camping and enjoying the outdoors is a family affair. The value of learning and enjoying nature is a part of life that needs to be maintained, nurtured and preserved. The inherent things your children will pick up on will be all positive and almost essential for healthy living. You do not necessarily need to have a plan to start with. Just go to the lake, go to the mountain or stream, you will find something that will suit you....

05/7/05 - May 7, 2005 RST27

Well, I haven't seen many kids fishing the lower McKenzie river still. Come to think of it, a person just doesn't see many kids fishing the river anymore. When I was a kid, you couldn't get me away from it. I have, however, seen a couple kids fishing a drainage pond behind a trailer park the other day. If it would have been legal, I'd have let them fish the river behind my house -better yet, take them fishing..

04/20/05 - April 20th 2005 esenderfutz

Oregon Fishing Season

Opening Day for Fishing; Opening weekend for fishing in Oregon.

The "high lakes" fishing is not good at this time. However A few nice "browns" were landed at the "South Twin" this opening weekend. Professional Northwest Trophy fisherman, Rick Thornton & Rick Palo of Springfield spent the weekend hard at it and only came up with only a few 15 inch browns and a $200 ticket for a burned out tail light on the boat (not the trailer, the actual boat). The word is that there were almost as many game cops as there were fisherman at the high lakes this year. -I wish the cops would mess with tweekers instead of fisherman...


"Wild" Winter Steelhead - Necanicum, Nehalem, Kilchis, Trask or Nestucca Rivers offers many wild fish.  Most of the fishing is catch and release except for a chance on the Wilson River for an occasional brute hatchery fish! The Wilson has a mix of wild and hatchery fish available.  The month of March is prime time!

"Spring" Chinook Salmon - It is forcasted to be another great year for Salmon fishing in Oregon. The Willamette River is said to have an estimated 109,000 fish returning. The Columbia River is also estimated to have a strong run of over 350,000 Spring Chinook Salmon. Over 70% of the Columbia run salmon are estimated to be "fin-clipped" fish (you can keep em!) The best fishing should be the last week in March through April.

Columbia River Sturgeon - May 15th through July 1st is the best time to get a "keeper". Catch & release fishing for sturgeon is available and almost unbelievable on the Columbia river after July 1st.

"Crab Fishing" in Oregon - July through August is said to be best.


04/19/05 - April 19th 2005 spj36

McKenzieRE; Lower McKenzie River Fishing; When was the last time anyone has seen a couple of kids riding their bikes down the road with their fishing poles strapped to their handlebars? Has anyone noticed that our youth can no longer be found browsing around the fishing section at the local Bi mart, dreaming of opening day of fishing season? You can bet our local youth can be found glued to the video game assaulting a bunker somewhere in make believe Iraq or otherwise. Are video games really Healthy? We all know the answer. Would you believe that a small club of greedy "old farts" are keeping the youth from fishing on the lower McKenzie River? The McKenzie valley offers some of the best fishing in Oregon. Why would anyone want to restrict the fishing instead of promote it? It's great wholesome entertainment for people of any age, It's Free and helps make a person a little more aware of his or her environment. -Kind of strange that the guy's who propose these crazy regulations are all members of a Fly Fishing Organizations and wish all other types of fishing to cease...go figure. Bonneville power has spent millions to fight the northern squaw fish. What happens if there is no fishing for bottom feeding (maybe the old farts at the marine board are related?) variety? The current population of game fish vs. "trash fish" is obscene. No kids can be seen fishing on the McKenzie or the Willamette rivers in the summertime, Only old bastards fly fishing in their 20k boats. If you think fly fishing can manage a stream, you are wrong. If you are an adult that feels offended in the presence of children, You have something wrong with you and should seek counseling.


02/03/05 - Feb 3rd 2005 emerald valley

Sneaky Fish Police; In some states game official's have to write enough tickets in order to pay their salary. They have been known to create a situation, even baiting to get the job done. Two young men from Oregon were aware of the trail used by a sneaky game cop. They wanted to get a funny video of the cop "sneaking" through the weeds & briar's, commencing his notorious "belly crawl" pursuit of unaware fisher's.. One of the young men acted as though he was fishing illegally in a known salmon hole (had No line or hook) while the other set up the video camera on the apparent stalking trail of the cop. Needless to say, the game cop that was sneaking in was unaware that he was set up. Just as planned the cop rolls in, hits the trail and commenced, what appeared to be "the sneak". To the cameraman's unexpected surprise, this game cop didn't go directly to the bait but stepped off the trail for an unexpected "one handed gratification".....(That dude is on the job! I can understand a paid coffee break but..) He then proceeded up the trail to write up the local fisher. The unfortunate camera guy lost interest in the master plan of some innocent humor and didn't quite know how to absorb what had just happened. The cop ended up writing the bait a ticket for fishing illegally (wondering where the hell his buddy was), while the camera operator held his unfortunate position (most likely face in hands and in shock) The ticket held firm, even though he didn't even have line on his pole or a hook. The judge said that it was irrelevant due to the fact that he had a fishing pole and was in a restricted area. The video tape was later sent to the Sheriff's office for evaluation due to the fact that it was filmed on public property and the officer was on the job. I think the cop should also be fined for using his pole illegally, ........we'll keep you posted on this one

Oregon Cop call.. "ya hoo! we're having fun" - They'll come a running with their ticket book in hand!

Welcome to Oregon, "Where everything you doo... is revenue"