Molalla River

The Molalla flows through lush Cascade foothills forest land before joining the Willamette. Not as well known as the Clackamas or the Sandy, the Molalla is nonetheless home to native winter steelhead as well as salmon, and sees little fishing pressure. The river corridor – quite wild, especially given its proximity to both Portland and Salem – also provides habitat for a variety of fauna, including northern spotted owl, black bear, elk and bald eagle. The Molalla provides a more intimate angling experience, with a number of great swinging runs. It's a "short-game" kind of river; perfect for a lighter (say a six-weight) switch or spey rod.

Standard Molalla River trips are by driftboat, and include flies, use of spey rods (if needed) and lunch. The daily fee is $450 for one or two anglers. Fishing is best from mid-February through July.