(from OR, ID, CA, WA, NV)
(all others)

The "beaten path" stops well shy of this federally designated Wild and Scenic River. The crystal clear McKenzie River rises in the Cascades' Clear Lake and flows through spectacular McKenzie Pass, past towering Eagle Rock, 80 miles to Eugene/Springfield where it joins the Willamette River.


The upper river hosts mainly Rainbows, to 20 inches. The lower river, near Springfield, is home to Cutthroats, to 16 inches. The average trout caught is about 12 inches.


The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife requires catch-and-release of native "McKenzie River Redsides." They stock the river with over 100,000 catchable hatchery Rainbows each year.

A day's limit is five. We use some in our full-day trip's lunch fish fry...



EQUIPMENT; Our high-rise rocker-bottom McKenzie drift boats were designed and built over the past nine decades for use on this favorite stream. They are superb in running whitewater and, with our able guides on the oars, maneuver precisely into the nooks and crannies where the big fish hide. We run a guide and two guests in each boat; up to 12 guests on a trip. We furnish the finest fly-fishing tackle, but guests certainly may bring their own favorites. Rods should be 8' to 9', 4-6 weight with a weight-forward floating flyline. Be sure to bring rain gear, beverages, and an Oregon fishing license. We recommend polarized glasses and a wide-brim hat.

PERSONNEL; Prince Helfrich, the first generation of this family of McKenzie River fishing guides, started fishing the McKenzie River in 1925. His sons and their sons carry on this singular tradition. Each guide is state-licensed and insured. Each will provide expert fishing instruction, on request. Each is first aid and CPR certified. Each is skilled and experienced in both fishing and boat handling .

The video below was taken with Grant McOmie and Aaron Helfrich in 2012.

I wanted to take a moment of my time, and let you know what an outstanding job you did, and how much I enjoyed myself. From the moment we arrived at the take out point to park our vehicle, you were extremely friendly and professional. Your patience and techniques for teaching me the correct way to fly fish paid off handsomely, as we pulled in at least 60 trout in less than seven hours. This was truly an experience that I will never forget, and I will be sure and let everyone know about the wonderful time I had. - Sincerely, Neil A. Spoon

Thanks so much for a most enjoyable trip yesterday. Your professionalism and efforts were much appreciated! I am sure we will be with you again. - Regards, Spence

It would be a privilege and a huge joy to get to fish again with such a competent guide and such a nice person. That day with you is still vivid in my memories and will sustain me through many a long day this winter. - Valentina L. Brashers

2014 Rates

Half-day trip: $275 per boat, one or two anglers Full-day trip: $400 per boat

A Helfrich Outfitter, LLC is an equal opportunity recreational service provider
operating under a permit issued by the Willamette National Forest.