May 22, 2012
steelhead, sturgeon, striped bass
This is the time that anglers also target striped bass in the tide waters. As the weather warms the bass should get more active in feeding as they prepare for spawning. Trout season will open in the Smith River basin on May 25.
The Smith River received its name from Jedediah Smith, who led a party of explorers from Utah to northern California and up into southern Oregon in 1828. They traveled north to the Umpqua River and stopped to camp near the mouth of the Smith River on July 13, 1828. On July 14th a group of Indians attacked and killed 15 people in Smith’s party. Smith and two of his men, who were not in camp at the time of the attack, survived and headed east toward the Willamette Valley to escape, another man who was in camp, escaped and fled north to Tillamook. The four men reconnected in Fort Vancouver.
A tributary of the Umpqua River, the Smith River begins its journey about 10 miles north of the small town of Drain, OR and runs 75 miles through the coastal mountain range to merge with the Umpqua River about 6 miles east of the mouth of the Umpqua. The Smith flows through a portion of the Siuslaw National Forest for about 10 miles of its journey. Although there is a portion of the Smith River in northern California that flows through Oregon, this Smith River is not to be confused with California’s Smith River. Oregon’s Smith River offers fishing for shad, striped bass, steelhead and fall Chinook. This is primarily a catch-and-release river so if you are just looking to spend a day fishing, but don’t plan on having fish for dinner, it’s a great place to be.
Trails & Waterfalls
Smith River Falls
Smith River Falls is a small waterfall, in the middle of the Smith River about 20 miles east of Reedsport Oregon on Smith River Road. The falls has a campground in the recreation area that allows for a peaceful stay along this beautiful river.
Although there are not many trails or water falls on the Smith River, the drive on the Smith River Road is beautiful. The Lower Smith River Road eventually runs into Smith River Road and takes you on a beautiful journey along the river and through farmland. Along with the splendor of the Smith River and its surroundings, there are many turnouts, parks and camp grounds along the way.