Columbia Slough -County Drainage Dist Office, Portland, Oregon
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Queens Blessing
N 45° 34.936 W 122° 38.750
10T E 527629 N 5047697
Quick Description: I learned of this canoe/kayak area while geocaching.
Location: Oregon, United States
Date Posted: 2/16/2013 10:41:37 PM
Waymark Code: WMGD47
Published By: Groundspeak Charter Member briansnat
Views: 4

Long Description:
The waymark coordinates are the location where you can put your canoe or kayak in the water of the slow-moving Columbia Slough. You can paddle two miles to the Whittaker Ponds and then paddle back the same way for a trip that totals about 4 miles.

I admit this is not the prettiest water to paddle in, in fact, it can look rather discusting at times, but it is actually a good place to practice since you don't have to fear any fast moving boats sending waves your way! Plus, the wildlife is fun to view. We saw lots of critters in the water and quite a few birds, too (including a green heron).

Please read OTHER INFORMATION below regarding the water gate that must be navigated.
The Columbia Slough has several side channels; be sure to GoogleEarth your paddle trip before you attempt it, so that you have a good idea of which channel is the main channel, and stay on it for the entire trip.
Parking/put-in/launching information:
We used the parking instructions that we found for the geocache GC1D966 Paddle to Cache: "You can put your kayak in at the launch at County Drainage District Office. From NE 33rd, turn West at Elrod Drive, where the country club is. Drive to the very end of Elrod, and you’ll see a parking lot labeled “Kayak Parking.” Drag your kayaks down the path on on the LEFT side of the building and put in at the dock."

Paddling conditions to be expected:
The Columbia Slough is relatively slow moving although we encountered some areas that has some decent current. We only paddle occasionally and had no problems at all. Watch for logs, branches in the water. You will paddle past a golf course (watch for golf balls!).

Difficulty of the trip:
Beginners will do fine here. The total trip from the County office to Whitaker Ponds and back is about 4 miles if you don't take any side trips.

Length of trip: 4 miles

There is a single portage on each end. The County Drainage District Office is at 1880 NE Elrod, Portland and the Whitaker Ponds portage is at 7040 NE 47th, Portland Oregon.

Permits required:
As of 2010, Oregon requires canoers and kayakers and operators of manually powered boats 10 feet or longer to carry a permit which funds inspection teams and aquatic invasive species prevention efforts. The permits are transferrable between people and can be used on any manually powered craft. If there are multiple people in a manually-powered boat, only one of them is required to carry a permit. Permits cost $7 ($5 permit plus $2 agent fee) and can be purchased at Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife license agents, ODFW offices that sell licenses (, and online at ODFW's website ( Boaters should carry their permit whenever they use their manually powered boat, and should be sure to clean their boat after every use to keep it free of aquatic species. The fine for operating a boat without a permit is $142. The fine for launching a boat with aquatic species visible on or in the boat is $242

Type of trip:
This can be a looping trip (4 miles, return where you started) or you can arrange to have a vehicle at the other end for a 2 mile paddle.

Take-out Coordinates: N 45° 34.419 W 122° 36.761

Other information:
WATER GATE: At the County Drainage portage, there is a floating gate that is sometimes latched. You can paddle up to the floating gate, unlatch it, paddle through, and then relatch it. This is easier in a canoe than a kayak.

Visit Instructions:
Logging waymarks in this category requires a picture of your boat and your GPS at the given parking/launching coordinates,and a brief description of your canoe/kayak trip.

Additional photos and information and/or suggestions for future waymarkers will be appreciated, but is not necessary.

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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log User Rating  
ornith visited Columbia Slough -County Drainage Dist Office, Portland, Oregon 3/3/2013 ornith visited it
Queens Blessing visited Columbia Slough -County Drainage Dist Office, Portland, Oregon 2/28/2013 Queens Blessing visited it

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