Big Eddy Day Use Area – Clackamas River

Big Eddy Day Use
Swimming Holes Rating

Big Eddy Day Use

Big Eddy Day Use

Big Eddy Day Use

Big Eddy Day Use

If a picnic with a couple chilled beverages while lazing around in the shade is your idea of a day well spent, then the Big Eddy Day Use Area is the spot for you. Located along the Clackamas River, this is not a campground but rather a nice picnic area offering activities such as fishing, swimming, and white rafting.

Bigleaf Maple trees cast a beautiful shade over the few picnic tables to provide visitors an escape from the hot rays of the summer sun. If summer picnics are incomplete without some splashing in the water, then the clear green Clackamas River waters provide a phenomenal cooling off effect. That being said, some caution is to be exercised with regard to swimming in the river. There are rapids upstream and downstream. So, it is phenomenally important to ensure you stay upstream when frolicking in the water.

Portland General Electric warns of changing water level and current of all Clackamas River locations.  Be sure you have moderate or strong (better) swim skills for safe swimming at Big Eddy Day Use Area.

Another point of concern is that while the cold water of the river is perfect for relief from the heat all around, the water really is quite cold and that can prove to be bothersome to some. All in all, the Big Eddy Day Use Area is the perfect spot for a beautiful picnic in the sun.

General Description

Access allowed: May -
Walking distance: Short
Day-use fees: Yes
Dogs: Must be on a leash
Usage: Light to Moderate
Accommodations: Eagle Cove Camp
Location: Mount Hood National Forest,  USDA
GPS coordinates: 45.1822, -122.1683
Elevation: 830 ft (253 m)
Big Eddy Day Use Area is located:

  • 13 miles southeast of Estacada
  • 41 miles south east of Portland
  • 65 miles northeast of Salem
  • 136 miles northeast of Eugene.

Website: USDA

Navigation Link*


Body of water: River
Water quality: Transparent
Current: Moderate to strong
Depth: Shallow and deep
Beach: River rocks, formation rocks and pebbles
Water T° (summer): Cool




Vault toilet
No water
Picnic sites

Driving Directions to Big Eddy Day Use Area

From Portland

  • Drive on Highway 26 East to Sandy
  • Turn right on Highway 211 and follow for about 6 miles to Highway 224
  • Turn left onto Highway 224 East (HWY 211S) and continue 13.1 miles to the trailhead on the right between milepost 37 and 38.

From Salem & Eugene

  • From I-5, take Exit 271 for Highway 214, and turn right onto Highway 214 toward Woodburn
  • Continue on Highway 211 North for 33.2 miles to Highway 224 East
  • Turn left onto Highway 224 East (HWY 211S) and continue 13.1 miles to the trailhead on the right between milepost 37 and 38.

Weather Forecast

Winter Weather Advisory

8:24 PM PDT on March 23, 2018
1:00 AM PDT on March 24, 2018
03/23 90%
High 47° / Low 34°
Chance of Rain
03/24 50%
Chance of Rain
High 47° / Low 34°
Mostly Cloudy
03/25 20%
Mostly Cloudy
High 50° / Low 38°
Chance of Rain
03/26 60%
Chance of Rain
High 48° / Low 42°
Chance of Rain
03/27 40%
Chance of Rain
High 51° / Low 45°

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