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Willamette river spots

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Hey everyone, I am going to be fishing the Willamette river this April, and was wondering if you had any spots near the Oregon State University campus. Along with that, do you have any tips for me? I need help!

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The Willamette is an excellent smallmouth bass river. Like most rivers not easy to fish from the bank do to limited access. I would contact a local guide if you can afford a float trip. Spinning tackle using both inline spinners like 1/4 oz Panther Martin fire tiger and small 3/8 oz spinnerbaits in white chartruese should work for you.

Tom

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Tom, would you use PM and spinnerbaits this early in the year or some other method?

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Used to be a creek that dumped into the Willy at Albany by the bridge on the south end across from the ramp.  Cannot remember the name...but at times was good for smallies.  You may have to get a map and figure out some access points it's been a long time for me.  Thomas Creek was also good but again...access can be tough.  Good luck

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I would float with a raft, canoe, or oar powered John Boat. Wouldn't want to take a glass boat on it in the free flowing areas. Perfection would be an aluminum boat with a Jet outboard.

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On March 28, 2017 at 3:46 PM, Barney said:

Tom, would you use PM and spinnerbaits this early in the year or some other method?

Panther Martin makes a single arm spinnerbait with charteuse blade that looks good.

Tom

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On 4/6/2017 at 9:50 PM, iceintheveins said:

I would float with a raft, canoe, or oar powered John Boat. Wouldn't want to take a glass boat on it in the free flowing areas. Perfection would be an aluminum boat with a Jet outboard.

Perfection is a 20' Thunderjet ?

 

The mainstem of the Willamette has never produced for me. It is just too much water too fish effectively (for bass). Fishing the sloughs, ponds, and confluences of it though can be very productive. 

 

Check out the ponds on riverside...

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On 4/14/2017 at 8:28 AM, Gooldy said:

Perfection is a 20' Thunderjet ?

 

The mainstem of the Willamette has never produced for me. It is just too much water too fish effectively (for bass). Fishing the sloughs, ponds, and confluences of it though can be very productive. 

 

Check out the ponds on riverside...

 

The Columbia dwarfs it's tributary, the Willamette, but I understand bigger rivers are intimidating. The Columbia is so big, a river doesn't have to be even that close to it's size to be considered a "big river" in my book.

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16 hours ago, iceintheveins said:

 

The Columbia dwarfs it's tributary, the Willamette, but I understand bigger rivers are intimidating. The Columbia is so big, a river doesn't have to be even that close to it's size to be considered a "big river" in my book.

The Columbia (and Snake, for that matter) isn't really even a "river" at that point though, at least in fishing tactics to me. It is so large that it is more like fishing a reservoir than a river in most ways. The willamette is just so fast moving in the main stem that I have never had any success for bass on it. You can go catch more NPM than you can shake a stick at though!

 

If you know the super effective tricks for the Willy please do share, I would love the help haha

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14 minutes ago, Gooldy said:

The Columbia (and Snake, for that matter) isn't really even a "river" at that point though, at least in fishing tactics to me. It is so large that it is more like fishing a reservoir than a river in most ways. The willamette is just so fast moving in the main stem that I have never had any success for bass on it. You can go catch more NPM than you can shake a stick at though!

 

If you know the super effective tricks for the Willy please do share, I would love the help haha

 

Correct, the Columbia is primarily a series of reservoirs and so is the Lower Snake. There are a few miles of true river below each dam before it backs up into another reservoir, with the exception of below Bonneville Dam, where the Columbia is true river until it hits tidewater downstream of Portland. The Willamette is more or less free flowing.

 

I would fish mostly with heavy jigs and spinnerbaits in the main channel, but in low light conditions topwaters like a buzzbait can be killer.

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Because it is free flowing, that is what I'm saying is what makes the Willy so tough to fish. With a boat and the willingness to go poke around a bit, you can go find some very fishy backwaters and slower parts though I have had good luck with.

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