Category Archives: John Day River

The John Day empties into the Columbia River 15 miles east of  the Deschutes River and has one of the largest returns of wild summer steelhead in the state.  These fish average 4-6 pounds, are very aggressive biters and love to chase down a fly on the swing.

By mid-October there are good numbers of steelhead in the lower reaches of the John Day River and fish are available throughout winter.

November is our favorite month on the John Day because the steelhead are fresh and bright, it is all floating line fishing, and very few people around.

We offer full day float trips (cataraft or drift boat) late October through mid-December covering 8-10 river miles a day with some of the finest steelhead fishing Oregon has to offer.

Small mouth bass averaging 8-12 inches thrive in the John Day and are tons of fun to catch on a light weight fly rod and floating line.  Most years during the month of May the water temperatures rise to fifty degrees or higher making the bass easy to attract with a dry fly or popper.  The fishing remains productive during June and July with anglers averaging 25-50 bass a day.

The John Day River bass fishing is excellent for any angler who likes to fish dry flies from the boat, and a perfect place to introduce novice fly fishers and children.

The ultimate way to experience the John Day is on a 3,4, or 5 day river trip through one of the most spectacular canyons in the west.  Bischof’s Flyfishing offers 3-5 day overnight camp trips May-June and single day float trips May, June and into July.

John Day River

World class small mouth bass fishing, along with a all wild run of summer/fall steelhead. Most of the John Day is still a very wild, and remote place.

Small Mouth Bass fishing is best June through August.

Steelhead fishing is at it’s peak during October and November.