Newbie needs floating buddy for 9ft pontoon on Santiam.


New member
Hi. Newbie here. I have a Colorado xt Pontoon boat I just got, haven't used it yet. I have fished from the bank my whole life now I am ready to leave the bank behind. Would love to have someone to drift with to help me be safe and show me on river fishing, I live close to the Santiam river. Ty,


I strongly advise you to get some experience on a lake to begin with. The Santiam is running high and fast right now. Even the fearless kayakers are staying away. I live on the river in Mill City and even the large boulders are only showing about a foot out of the water instead of the two or three feet like they normally do. Learning to navigate on the Santiam is not a good idea. Be safe wherever you go!


I agree, the Santiam can be a very unforgiving River! Years ago I use to take my drift boat on a couple stretches, had my heart pumping a couple of times....not in a good way. Back then and probably now you had to know the river, you take the wrong fork and you are in big trouble. A lake or even the Willamette from Independence to Wallace Marine park is a safe float most times of the year, right now? Boat ramps and park may not be open though.....


New member
Yes, your right, sorry did not mean right away, but when safe. Just putting it out there. Thanks for the heads up though. Just want to get off the bank. Any place else close to Jefferson that is nice for pontoons? When water is lower? Thanks for the fast responses.


Well-known member
Maybe a bit OFF topic but here is a report from the main Willamette near Independence. I have not fished since March so decided to hit the Social Security hole. Surprise, nobody there. I found out why quickly. Lots of early moss to foul one's gear and rendering fishing very frustrating. Conclusion, better head for the tribs next.