Clearwater River Company

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~ Clearwater River Fishing Report ~

Hard to believe October has already slipped by.... The fish numbers look great and catching has been awesome. We have an awesome team of professional guides that consistently put clients on the fish. Anyone interested in booking a guided trip on the Clearwater River Idaho for steelhead can email us or give us a call at:






The entire system settled back in to normal flows after a wet week with high water. The catching has been picking up after a few tougher days, but our guides have persevered.  With conditions as they are, the fish are fair game for everyone. This is a great chance for Spey-casters, float-tossers, side-drifters, spoon-chuckers, back-trollers and everyone else to find success on the Clearwater River, Idaho. Our Professional Steelhead guides have been finding the big B run fish throughout the entire system.

The increase in water flows scattered the fish, so some of our guides chose to do long floats covering as much choice water as possible to get their numbers. Some guys who committed to grinding 5-6 miles of water put enough fish in the net to make great days. So it really is a matter of preference on how you want to fish, as long as you have a well presented line in the water, you should get into fish.


South Fork:

The SF is flowing at 183 cfs. The high water last week absolutely pushed some fish in there but anyone thinking about it should expect to hole hop. If you aren't getting fish quick in a hole move to the next one. Any fish in the area will know a bait is in the vicinity after 1 cast. Don't waste too much time if you're not hooking up.


North Fork:

The north fork is doing a great job pushing clean water in to the mainstream.  Fish are holding from the wall to the pole yard. Bobber fisherman are getting a few. Best success seems to be coming early in the morning or late in the evening. A couple nice fish caught swinging spoons today in the rainy weather by the sounds of it.


Upper River: 

The river above Orofino has been hit and miss this last week.  This weekend's flow was 2700. It has refused to get clean with the visibility remaining in the 3-4' range. The cloudy water has discouraged most Spey fishermen from swinging, but bait fishermen have been doing well if they on a stretch that is holding fish.  Fish have been getting caught clear to Kooskia and beyond but every day has been different as these fish are on the move. If you happen to hit a stretch on a day where fish are moving through you stand to do well. As the flows drop and the water temperature drops the fish will start to slow down and hold up.


Lower River: 

The lower river has come into nice form as of late. The clarity has been good and flows are ideal for most forms of fishing.  Fish are available from top to bottom. The big variable in fishing the lower river is wind forecast. Pay attention to that before you choose a section to fish.


This coming week:

We have rain in our forecast 4 of the next 7 days. Fishing will hinge on just how much rain we get. In our opinion the river is in good enough shape that it can take quite a bit. If it doesn't rain too hard in the headwaters, the fishing should remain good! If it dumps up top, we may see a few more  days where we scratch for a few. The only way to know for sure is to be on the water and seeing for yourself! Watch the river flows (links below). It takes about 14 hours for the water to peak near Orofino after it has peaked on the Selway or Lochsa.


Tight Lines~

Tom Bullock & Clearwater River Company Guides


To book a trip email us or give us a call at:



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    Ensure that all wild fish are released immediately unharmed. Check out our fish handling and processing tips.



~ Clearwater River Fishing Links ~

     Red Shed in Peck is the place to go for anything related to Spey / Fly fishing.

     Camp-Cabin-Home in Lewiston will fill the needs for any gear fishermen. Camp-Cabin-Home has opened a new store in Orofino!!!!!!!! The new store is located right off Highway 12.  

     The entire river is barbless hooks only!!!!

Clearwater River Flows

Orofino 10-day Weather Report

Pacific Northwest Radar


Fahrenheit to Celsius Converter

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Report Snaggers to IDFG


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~ Steelhead Regulations ~ Steelhead Home Page ~

~ Steelhead Harvest Report ~ Steelhead Dam Count ~

~ 7-day Dam Count ~

A quick note on the harvest report... A lot of this data is interpolated. Only a couple of anglers are actually checked and the rest are just counted from the road. The numbers are also based on previous year counts.  

Buy your Fishing License and Steelhead Tag Online

Idaho Fish and Game

Nez Perce Tribe


Dworshak Fish Hatchery

Suggested Clothing List | Clearwater Access Points

    Lodging is available through reputable local area motels. We like and recommend Clearwater Crossing RV Park, Orofino, ID, Lewis-Clark Resort, Kamiah, ID, The Lodge at River's Edge & Helgeson Place Hotel, Orofino, ID and Idaho Sportsman Lodge, Sites, ID.


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Featured Alaskan Destinations


Pro Guide Kyle Jones with a Clearwater Steelhead


RIVER ETIQUETTE:  This is a big SMALL river. When someone does something rude, word travels fast. Some of the stuff that has been going on is just plain common sense. If someone "CORKS" you, take the higher road, say something POLITELY to let them know what they did wasn't cool and continue on with your day. If it is a guide boat, take a picture or write down the boat description, get the outfitter initials off the boat, ask them for their name, and try to get the sticker number. Call the Idaho Outfitters Guides and Licensing Board and report them. If it is a private boat get their boat description and registration number, and spread the word. They will black-list them selves very quickly.

     We are all out here to have fun and catch fish, but not at the expense of other people.

1) Don't Low Hole - If you want to fish a run, either go 150 yards down stream and start or wait for the boat in the run to work their way down.

2) When in Rome do as the Romans - If someone is in a run that you want to fish and they are side-drifting, then side-drift with them - Don't CORK them by starting to back-down plugs. If you want to fish it that bad WAIT for them to move on. 

3) Boat anglers should give Bank anglers (fly fishermen included) their space. But at the same time, Bank anglers don't need to try to lob their gear into a boat to make their point.

4) Do not anchor in the middle of the runs and stay there all day. We all have a right to fish through runs, both guides and private boaters. If you anchor up and are blocking the run, you will only cause tension out on the river. If you want to anchor and eat lunch that is one thing, but staying in the same place all day on anchor while tying up the run is another. A great example of this is at 5-mile, there have been a couple boats that get out there at dark-o-thirty, anchor right in the middle of the run and then wonder why they are catching crap from other boats and not catching many fish. The only exception to this rule is the pipeline outside the hatchery, and if your idea of Steelhead fishing is to sit in town all day at the "pipe" by all means anchor away, you are  missing the big picture of coming to the Clearwater. 

5) Give each other some room. Make an effort to see where bank anglers and boat anglers are fishing and try to avoid running over their water.

Here is a link to Poppy's Etiquette page,

Looking for old reports???? Click Here.

If anyone has suggestions of things they want listed here please email



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Copyright 2007 West Coast Anglers LLC
Last modified: 11/03/14