There is good reason that the Deschutes is Oregon’s best known river. The Deschutes is a desert oasis rife with wild resident rainbows, hearty sea-run steelhead, countless rapids and stunning scenery. It is also a favored stomping ground for the Rentons, a family that has centered much of their life around this remarkable resource. David Renton has guided the river for more than 30 years and his wife Debbie has been there with him making a name for herself and their family by creating the most comfortable camps and preparing the tastiest meals that guided Deschutes anglers have ever experienced. In keeping with their priorities, they also raised their boys Dillon and Knut on the river and with time they have become an integral part of this finely tuned family-run outfitting business.
The Rentons run multi-day float trips for both trout and steelhead. Trout trips tend to focus on the upper river while steelhead trips tend to focus on the lower reaches of the Deschutes. Typically the camp crew will hustle downstream to secure and set up camp while the anglers will carefully work their way downstream in drift boats getting out to wade fish at prime locations. In addition to having earned a reputation for great camps and cooking, the Rentons are equally well known for providing great instruction and making their guests better anglers. Whether you want to work on your entomolgy, dry fly presentaions or spey casting, the Rentons have what it takes to improve your game.
The Deschutes River flows north through central Oregon, eventually draining into the Columbia River near The Dalles, Oregon.
Deschutes River Fishing Program:
The Deschutes has the distinction of being one of the West’s best rainbow trout fisheries, as well as being a world-class steelhead river. Fishing for the famed “redsides”, which range from 12-20 inches, can be good throughout the year. The steelhead fly fishing gets going in August on the lower river and peaks on the upper river from mid-September through October. Drift boats are used for transportation but no fishing is allowed from the boat. Be prepared for aggressive wading and dealing with low overhanging bushes, especially when trout fly fishing.
Fly fishing for trout on the Deschutes may be one of the most unique angling experiences to be found in the American west. The fish are all native, wild “redsides.” This is a distinct sub-species of rainbow trout that tend to be some of the hardest fighting trout, for their size, you’ll ever find. Add to that the size of the river these fish swim in (3,500 – 5,500 cfs) and you’ve got a real battle on your hands! The Deschutes is a very healthy river system with an abundance of food for the trout. This means a “typical” day could have you fishing small mayfly emergers on 6x tippet, then bouncing large stonefly nymphs along the river bottom before spending the evening swinging caddis soft hackles. Guests will fish two per guide and good wading skills are important.
Deschutes River Accommodations and Meals:
The Renton’s are known to set up some of the most comfortable camps on the Deschutes. Guests stay in double occupancy 12 x 12 Montana canvas spike tents. Camps will have a solar shower as well as a solar charging station. Tents will have cots and pads and guests will bring their own sleeping bags and towels. All meals will be delicious and thoughtfully prepared by Debbie and are served in the dining tent.
**Note: Make sure to bring your own sleeping bag
Day 1: Arrive Portland or Redmond, OR and overnight at your elected accommodations
Day 2: Take rental car to predetermined launch point to meet guides for a full day of guided fishing. Lunch and dinner provided riverside. Overnight at riverside camp. Rental vehicle will be shuttled to take out
Day 3 - 4: Full days of guided fishinig with all meals and riverside accommodations included
Day 5: Full day of guided fishing with breakfast and lunch. After fishing depart for home
Note: Lower Deschutes River float trips operated under a BLM special use permit issued to Renton River Adventures
2019 Rate: $2,000 per person for a 3 night/4 day package based on 2-4 anglers
Note: Stays of varying length available
Included: On the water meals, guided fishing, fishing tackle, camp gear, vehicle shuttle
Not Included: Alcohol, waders/boots, fishing licenses, guide gratuities, sleeping bag, personal items
Species: Redside (rainbow) trout, Summer steelhead
Season: Trout: May - October; Steelhead: July - November
Capacity: 4 anglers
Map: Maupin, OR