The Deschutes River is one of the premier fly fishing rivers in the Pacific Northwest. Where else is a blue ribbon, native-fish-only trout stream and a strong summer steelhead run found in the same place?
The Upper Deschutes originates West of Bend in the Cascade Mountains. It begins it’s journey from the spring fed waters of Little Lava Lake and flows South to Crane Prairie Reservoir
The North end of Bend is the beginning of the Middle Deschutes. This section has the most private property and irrigation water issues. With that being said, there is still outstanding fishing on the Middle Deschutes. From mid-April to the end of October is the best time to fish the middle river. With access around Tumalo, Eagle Crest, Cline Falls, Odin Falls, Lower Bridge, Crooked River Ranch, Steelhead Falls and the confluence of Whychus Creek you can still find plenty of water on the Middle Deschutes.
The Lower Deschutes is likely Oregon’s most well known and most sought after spot to fly fish for both Wild Trout and Steelhead. With trout populations running over 3500 trout per mile, the first 50 miles below Pelton Dam offers some of the finest trout opportunities in the state. Add in an excellent yearly return of Summer Steelhead and it is hard to argue that the Lower Deschutes is not only one of Oregon’s finest rivers but also one of the greatest rivers in the West.
Maupin is a good place to start if you are fishing from shore and camping.