Klamath River Fishing

Klamath River Fishing Guide


The Klamath River, which begins east of the Cascade Mountains in Eastern Oregon and flows more than 260 miles to the Pacific Ocean is one of the most fertile, and productive Salmon, and Steelhead Rivers in the Pacific Northwest. No other river in California or Oregon offer fish after fish action like the Klamath River, and no other guide in California or Oregon spend more days fishing the Klamath River than Mario Gomez from Ironhead Guide Service. When the fish arrive in late September and early October, multiple fish days are common. In fact, while fishing the Klamath River there are days every season that anglers catch between 10 and 20 fish a day. During the fall salmon and winter steelhead seasons professional Klamath River Fishing guide Mario Gomez will be leading daily Klamath River fishing adventures. The Klamath River fishing is as close to the kind of action that lures anglers to Alaska. From September through March, the Klamath River fishing is at its best. The Klamath River fishing season is very popular for customers who want multiple fish days of hard fighting Klamath River salmon and steelhead. Mario Gomez from Ironhead Guide Service will put you front and center on some of the best fishing in the US. For a fun day on the water and anglers looking for lots of action, the Klamath River fishing is where it’s at. It's also one of the best kept secrets in the West, and overlooked, fisheries in California and Oregon. The Klamath River is well off the beaten path and the rugged terrain mixed with the secluded location offers adventures that are as wild in nature.

In the 60’s and 70’s the Klamath River supported legendary Salmon and Steelhead returns supporting numerous fishing lodges and resorts. Klamath River fishing guides have seen a resurgence and the Klamath now supports a healthy run of Salmon and Steelhead once again due to tighter regulations. The Klamath River is a place where we can catch lots of hard-fighting salmon, and steelhead. Don’t let this gem of a fishing destination evade you and come fish the Klamath River with Ironhead Guide Service, you will find it to be very productive. Pro guide Mario Gomez fishes out of luxurious Willie drift boats, and can fish two to three people with complete comfort. Larger groups can be accommodated with advance notice, Ironhead Guide Service has hand selected some of the top rated and producing guides in California and Oregon to assist with the increasing clientele. A typical trip begins around, and consist of 6 to 8 hours of fishing.

Klamath River Salmon Fishing

The fall Klamath River salmon fishing is the first stop for professional guide Mario Gomez from Ironhead Guide Service to make upon his return from fighting wildland fires each year. From September through October, the Klamath River salmon fishing is at its peak, and Mario Gomez will be guiding fishing adventures daily. This season is very popular with Ironhead Guide Service’s customers who want multiple-fish days of hard fighting king salmon. For an awesome day on the river, and for anglers looking for lots of action the Klamath is the place. It's also one of the best kept secrets, and is one of the closest, yet overlooked, salmon fisheries in Northern California.

The Klamath River is located at the very tip of Northern California. The Klamath River has one of the largest king salmon runs in California. The Klamath River is one of the most fertile, productive salmon rivers in the West. Hundreds of thousands of hard-fighting, great-biting Chinook or king salmon enter the river late each summer. No other river in California or Oregon offer fish after fish salmon action like the Klamath River. When the fish arrive in late September and early October, multiple-fish days are common.

One of the best areas to catch them is the stretch of river between Iron Gate Dam and Happy Camp, CA. With the beautiful scenery and the local wildlife, this is a great place for the whole family. Bears, eagles, red tail hawks, elk, otters, and deer are all encountered while fishing on the Klamath River. The Klamath River Salmon are caught back-bouncing roe, and back trolling lures in the riffles, runs, and pools. The reason the salmon fishing is so good on the Klamath River is because the salmon stack up by the thousands. Steep rugged embankment and private property limit bank access, so drift boaters have the river to themselves.

While the Klamath River salmon caught in the middle section of the river aren't as bright as the fish caught in the lower river, they fight as hard as ever and provide tons of fun for anglers of all skill levels. The Klamath River salmon meat is good for the table fair or smoking. This fishery is especially good for kids and older anglers who simply want lots of action. The Klamath River king salmon are aggressive, hard fighting fish and excellent sport on the light tackle used.

Most people or groups stay in Happy Camp CA, because it’s in the center of some of the best salmon fishing on the Klamath River. The Klamath River salmon fishing adventures offered by Ironhead Guide Service is a very popular trip, books fast, and is a favorite for large parties and family outings.

Klamath River Steelhead Fishing

The Klamath River Steelhead fishing stands tall. From early fall through spring, steelhead numbers continue to impress anglers on the wild and scenic Klamath River, which harbors a thriving population of wild steelhead. The Klamath River has strong runs of steelhead and salmon, but most famous for the run of half-pounder steelhead. While recent headlines highlight the struggles with water issues, dam removal, and politics, the fish certainly don’t know it. The Klamath River is a beautiful and productive steelhead river in a remote and rugged setting.

Half-pounder and adult steelhead start showing up in the middle river in September and October. The famous “half pounder” run peaks in October and double digit days can be had. The adults are also showing then and continue their migration well through March. The Klamath River steelhead fishing is in full swing come November and will produce quality fishing through the winter months. On average, anglers can expect to see a few handfuls of half pounders and a few adults mixed in to a day’s catch.

Fortunately, anglers don’t come to too the mighty Klamath River thinking they’ll land a trophy steelhead. Steelhead to 10 pounds are caught annually; however, you are more apt to catch 3 to 6 pound fish. Anything heavier than 7 pounds is a very good Klamath River steelhead.

The difference between the Klamath and some of the other popular steelhead rivers is that there’s more fish on the Klamath River and less people. The Smith, Chetco, and the Umpqua Rivers have bigger fish, but also has a lot more guides and fisherman betting the water. You are likely to see more wildlife than other anglers on the Klamath River at least on the middle Klamath River from Weitchpec to the town of Yreka. Happy Camp, CA now serves as a base of operations for pro guide Mario Gomez from Ironhead Guide Service, and for anglers fishing the middle section of the Klamath River. It’s one of the river’s most productive sections of water and tends to be kind to anglers.

During the fall and winter, the Klamath River around Happy Camp is a perfect spot for anglers wanting to not see another soul, yet still endure great fishing. The serenity of not having a bunch of people around is hard to beat, I tell folks we probably won’t see any other boats, unless they are fishing with our group or are one of the other guides I employee.

Klamath River steelhead run from late fall through March throughout that time frame, the action in and around Happy Camp never skips a beat. On the other hand, you’ll need to come prepared. This remote section of the Klamath National Forest might not get overrun by anglers, but the weather makes its presence known from December through February.

Locating the Klamath River steelhead is your biggest battle, but definitely not a chore, and Mario Gomez the owner of Ironhead Guide Service is the best man for that job. He was born and raised in Happy Camp and has spent his entire life fishing for salmon, trout, and steelhead on the Klamath River. Mario and his company spend more days fishing the Klamath River than any other guide in California and Oregon. It’s likely the Klamath River steelhead are going to be in the riffles and runs. With the cold water in the winter months, steelhead tend to flee the faster water. Keep in mind, when the water is cold the bite doesn’t usually start until mid-morning. In the dead of winter, the more sun on the water the better.


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