• Starting Point Sportcraft - RM 24
  • End Point Willamette Falls - RM 26.5
  • Why this Trip

    Willamette Falls is the largest waterfall in the Pacific Northwest by water volume, second largest in the United States behind Niagara Falls.

  • Conditions and Equipment

    Good for canoes and kayaks at low summer flows. There is relatively little current along this stretch and only a small amount from the falls. Paddlers must be aware of powerboats and wakes rebounding off hard surfaces, like cement revetments.

  • Amenity Highlights

    There is parking at both Sportcraft Marina and Clackamette Park, with a portable toilet at Sportcraft and restrooms at Clackamette.

  • Trip Description

    This horseshoe shaped block waterfall is caused by a basalt shelf in the river floor and is 1,500 feet wide and 40 feet high. The falls is a traditional fishing site for many Native American tribes and was once a center for trade.

    On this short trip you have the opportunity to see the connection between industry and the Willamette, catch a glimpse of a leaping sturgeon or salmon, view petroglyphs, and the historic Willamette Falls Locks (which are no longer in operation).

    Put-in at the boat ramp at Sportcraft Marina, 1701 Clackamette Drive, Oregon City. You can also access the river from Clackamette Park or Dahl Beach, just downstream.

  1. Sportcraft Marina

      1. Boat Ramp
      2. Restrooms
      3. Vehicle Access/Parking
      • River Mile 25.5
      • Latitude 45.3645
      • Longitude -122.60222

    This boat ramp and park are extremely busy in the spring because of the many people putting their power boats on the water to fish for spring Chinook. For paddlers,…

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Comments

  1. Nice and helpful site. I paddle the river from Eugene to Corvallis.
    So the locks at Oregon City are no longer in operation? So portage around the falls is the only option? Thanks

  2. Yes, the locks are no longer in operation. You need to take out at Bernert Landing in West Linn and arrange for vehicle transportation to Sportcraft Marina boat ramp which is the closest put-in below the falls. A portage-by-foot is not really an option here.

  3. Is this still true that there is no foot portage option? Why not make a little dock and trail around the locks? It wouldn’t cost much. Is it even legal for the Corps to block a navigable waterway?

  4. That is a good question. I believe there are some limitations in terms of access at the downstream end. We are meeting with some folks next week who might have a better answer on that. Thanks for asking the question. I will post an update when we know more.

  5. Any update on if you can portage around by foot?

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