Elochoman River

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Elochoman River
Name origin: Name of a Cathlamet village[1]
Country United States
State Washington
County Wahkiakum, Cowlitz, Pacific
Source Elochoman Lake
 - location Willapa Hills, Cowlitz County, Washington
 - elevation 1,654 ft (504 m) [2]
 - coordinates 46°20′20″N 123°12′43″W / 46.33889°N 123.21194°W / 46.33889; -123.21194 [2]
Mouth Columbia River
 - location Elochoman Slough, Wahkiakum County, Washington
 - elevation 0 ft (0 m) [3]
 - coordinates 46°13′35″N 123°24′2″W / 46.22639°N 123.40056°W / 46.22639; -123.40056Coordinates: 46°13′35″N 123°24′2″W / 46.22639°N 123.40056°W / 46.22639; -123.40056 [3]
Length 15 mi (24 km) [3]
Basin 73 sq mi (189 km2) [4]
Location of the mouth of the Elochoman River in Washington

The Elochoman River is a tributary of the Columbia River, in the U.S. state of Washington. It is about 15 miles (24 km) long.[3]

The river's name comes from the name of a Cathlamet (Chinookan) village.[1]

Course[edit]

The Elochoman River's headwater's start from Elochoman Lake, in Cowlitz County,[2] from which it flows west for several miles. Joined by the tributary East Fork[5] and North Fork,[6] the main river turns south. After a few miles, the West Fork tributary joins.[7] From there the main Elochoman River flows south and southwest. Its river valley widens into a broad flat bottomland called the Upper Elochoman Valley.[8] Then the river passes through a short but narrow gorge, after which it meanders through the Lower Elochoman Valley.[9]

In its final reach the Elochoman River flows through the sloughs and wetlands of the Columbia River's estuary. The mouth of the river is on Elochoman Slough, a 3-mile (4.8 km) long[10] side-channel of the Columbia River located east of Hunting Islands, northwest of Cathlamet.[4] Much of the lower Elochoman River, Elochoman Slough, and Hunting Island are part of the Columbian White-tailed Deer National Wildlife Refuge.[11]

Natural history[edit]

The Elochoman River supports populations of Chinook, Coho, and Chum salmon, as well winter-run steelhead trout.[12] The steelhead, which routinely number over 1,000 annually, are a draw for sport fishing. The largest salmon (Chinook) ever caught in freshwater in Washington State was caught here by Mark Salmon on Oct 5th, 1992, his catch weighed 68 lbs. and 4 ounces.[13]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Bright, William (2007). Native American placenames of the United States. University of Oklahoma Press. p. 143. ISBN 978-0-8061-3598-4. online at Google Books
  2. ^ a b c U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Elochoman Lake
  3. ^ a b c d U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Elochoman River
  4. ^ a b "Lewis & Clark's Columbia River: Elochoman River and Slough, Washington". Retrieved May 13, 2009.
  5. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: East Fork Elochoman River
  6. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: North Fork Elochoman River
  7. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: West Fork Elochoman River
  8. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Upper Elochoman Valley
  9. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Lower Elochoman Valley
  10. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Elochoman Slough
  11. ^ Course information mainly from USGS topo maps available via the relevant USGS GNIS pages.
  12. ^ Rose, Doug (2006). Washington River Maps & Fishing Guide. Frank Amato Publications. ISBN 1-57188-367-3.
  13. ^ "Freshwater and Saltwater Sport Fish Records". Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.