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Fish, ski, play!



Lake Billy Chinook Houseboats

P.O. Box 1921
Redmond, OR 97756

For reservations call:

Local: 541-504-5951
Toll free: 1-866-546-2939

Questions/Comments?

e-mail: info@lakebillychinook.com


Click on the picture to download your boarding pass:


Boarding Times
Monday-12 noon
Tuesday-12 noon
Wednesday-12 noon
Thursday-6 p.m.
Friday-6 p.m.

  Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What does each houseboat come equipped with?

When does my vacation start?

When do I have to pay for my houseboat vacation?

When is the best time to come for good weather?

What is the lake like?

What is there to do on the Lake?

What are my payment options?

What is our check out time?

What should I bring from home?

Where do we stay at night?

What type of fish are in the lake?

What do we do in the case of a medical emergency on the lake?

Where is Lake Billy Chinook?

Is a deposit required upon booking?

Can we bring pets along with us?

Are there age restrictions?

Are there any extra precautions we need to take with children on board?

Can friends join us during our trip?

If I have friends coming to join us, do you have a way of transporting them to my boat or must I come back to pick them up?

Can people contact us on the houseboat?

Can I water ski behind my houseboat?

Do cellular phones work on the lake?

Do the houseboat doors lock?

How many people can I put on my houseboat over your recommended number?

How far ahead must I book?

How fast do houseboats travel?

How much gas and oil will the houseboat consume?

How difficult is driving a houseboat?

How do I check availability or reserve a houseboat?

How long will it take us to drive to Lake Billy Chinook?

Is the lake rough or will I get seasick?

Will I have any privacy on the lake?

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When does my vacation start?

Morning boarding times are 12 noon.
Evening boarding times are 6 pm.
Sunday is a non-boarding day.
Off season times may vary.
The times above are our goal; however we are at the mercy of a number of factors, including what time our previous guests return to the dock. Please help us by adhearing to your return time. We will do our best to assure that the times stated above are met. We thank you for your patience.

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When do I have to pay for my houseboat vacation?

The deposit is due within one week of booking. The full rent is due 45 days before boarding.

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When is the best time to come for good weather?

The middle of June through the end of September. Of course this does not mean we get endless sun, but our climate maintains a comfortable temperature, even in less than perfect weather conditions.

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What is the lake like?

Located just three hours away from Portland, we have plenty of water (approximately 72 miles of shore line), a lot of sun and a variety of fish. Round Butte Dam is a hydroelectric producer, and one of the largest earthen structures of its type in the U.S. This rock-filled dam holds back the Deschutes, Metolius, and Crooked rivers to form beautiful Lake Billy Chinook. The water level is nearly 400 feet above the canyon floor and allows a unique vantage point to see 10 million years of geologic history embedded in the canyon walls.

Central Oregon is famous for its many sunny days, and has been advertised as having 350 days of sun a year.

The area is a photographer's paradise. The Crooked River arm provides beautiful rock formations such as Devil's Post File and The Ship. On the Metolius arm one can see some fantastic views of Mount Jefferson.

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What is there to do on the Lake?

Not only does Lake Billy Chinook have endless, beautiful shoreline to boat along, but the fishing is notably excellent. Cove Palisades State Park surrounds a large portion of the lake. This state park has plenty of hiking trails, as well as picnic areas. The Crooked River Petroglyph is a historic site within the park worth a visit. A research natural area called The Island is a raised peninsula that you'll have to watch from the water, as it's protected, but beautiful it certainly is.

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What are my payment options?

A. Pay by check or money order.
B. As of 2008 we accept Visa and Mastercard.

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What is our check out time?

Times vary. Please ask about check out time when you arrive.

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What will it cost to rent a houseboat for our vacation?

Your houseboat vacation with Lake Billy Chinook is based on the size of the boat, the season, features and the number of people it can accommodate.

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What does each houseboat come equipped with?

Please see our [Standard Equipment] page.

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What should I bring from home?

Beach and Bath Towels
Beach Chairs
Bedding and Pillows
Camera
CDs
Coolers
Dish Towels
First Aid Kit and Medications
Fishing Gear
Flashlight
Games (Board games and PS2)
Insect Repellent
Movies (DVD and VHS)
Paper Towels
Sunscreen
Water Toys
All food items including condiments (salt, pepper, etc.)
All personal soaps and shampoo.
The houseboat does not have anything personal on it.

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What other costs are involved with houseboating vacations?

Your costs are minimal. You pay for the gas and propane you use during your vacation. Your gas costs will vary depending on how much you operate your boat and how much time you spend cruising. Most of our customers spend between $95 and $150 on gas. This is an estimate only, but is a good figure for budgeting purposes. Your insurance will be $20 per day, if you choose this option. It covers up to $1000 in repairs.

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Where do we stay at night?

The houseboat cannot be safely secured in the middle of the lake. We do not provide anchors. You will be instructed on how to tie-up your houseboat to the shore during your captain orientation. The lake offers 72 miles of shore line for your needs.

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What type of fish are in the lake?

Lake Billy Chinook has a large variety of fish. Kokanee, the most popular pink meat fish, is delicious fried or smoked: Bull Trout, Small Mouth Bass, Rainbow Trout, and German Browns are regular catches, and occasionally someone catches an Atlantic Salmon or Catfish. There are also great crawdad or crayfish caught in the Crooked and Deschutes Rivers.

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When is a good time for fishing?

Fishing season is year round. No place in the Northwest offers better fishing for record Bull Trout or Kokanee. The Metolius arm of the river opens March 1. March and April is when anglers go after large bull trout. The largest bull trout taken at the reservoir was more than 23 pounds, which is a state record.

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What is the average temperature during July and August?

It averages between 70 to 90 degrees. It can get up to 100+ from time to time.

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What do we do in the case of a medical emergency on the lake?

The Three Rivers Community has a volunteer EMT service available. Your cell phone will in most cases work in key areas of the lake. If you have special needs, please advise us in advance.

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Where is Lake Billy Chinook?

Lake Billy Chinook is located in Central Oregon just west of Culver. The lake sits just west of Hiway 97. It is approximately 145 miles SE of Portland, Oregon, 308 miles SE of Seattle, Washington and about 490 miles NW of Sacramento, California.

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Is a deposit required upon booking?

A deposit of $400 is due within one week of making your reservation. It is refundable when the boat is brought back in good condition.

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Can we bring pets along with us?

Please discuss with our reservation specialist about the pet policy.

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Are there age restrictions?

You must be 21 years old to rent a houseboat.

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Are there any extra precautions we need to take with children on board?

Children will have a wonderful time on board a houseboat, but certainly require attentive supervision. They must have life jackets on when outside the cabin area.

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Can friends join us during our trip?

Yes they can. The dock is the best place to meet. You must make sure they have a gate code and directions. Please make arrangements to meet them at the dock at a set time.

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If I have friends coming to join us, do you have a way of transporting them to my boat or must I come back to pick them up?

You must meet them at our dock, at a set time.

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Can people contact us on the houseboat?

No contact is available. Your cell phone may work in certain areas.

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Can I water ski behind my houseboat?

No, your houseboat is made for cruising around the lake. We do however have additional boats just for that purpose, that you can add to your vacation plan.

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Do cellular phones work on the lake?

Some work quite well, others not very well or only at specific locations. You should give our office phone number to family in case of an emergency. This is the best way to insure a message will get to you.

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Do the houseboat doors lock?

No, they do not lock, but we have not had any issues due to the proximity of the lake.

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How many people can I put on my houseboat over your recommended number?

You are not allowed any more people on the boat than the allotted Coast Guard and insurance approved capacity.

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How far ahead must I book?

Earlier is better. If you're planning a trip during a holiday weekend like Memorial Day, it's best to get a reservation six months or more in advance. Mid-week trips or off-season dates are often available as little as a few weeks beforehand. July and August are busy. You should book early.

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How fast do houseboats travel?

Up to 6 knots or 7 miles per hour.

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How much gas and oil will the houseboat consume?

The engine consumption of gas may range from 6-8 gallons per hour, depending on size of houseboat, traveling speed, weight and weather conditions. The 2 cycle houseboat engine consumes 3 to 4 gallons of oil for each 200 gallons of gasoline used. The generator consumption of gas can range more or less 2 gallons per hour depending on the size of houseboat, plug ins, air conditioning and heater usage.

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How difficult is driving a houseboat?

Driving a houseboat is different than driving a car, but is not that difficult. When you pick up your houseboat, the marina staff will give you an orientation and walk you through driving and maneuvering the houseboat. Most people get the hang of it within a few minutes.

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How do I check availability or reserve a houseboat?

Give us a call at 866-546-2939, and our reservation specialist will be happy to check availability for you. It's helpful if you already have an idea of when you want to go and what boat you're most interested in when you call, although we're happy to help you pick the right boat for your needs.

You can also contact us online with your availability request, and our reservation specialist will get in touch with you with the information you need.

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How long will it take us to drive to Lake Billy Chinook?

From Portland 3 hours, from Eugene 3 hours, and from Salem 2.5 hours. Plan extra time for night driving. We are off the beaten path, but it is truly a paradise. From Culver (97734) it is a 30 minute drive to our marina on the Metolius River. Do not stop at The Cove Palisades State Park, keep on going.

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Is the lake rough or will I get seasick?

The lake is calm most of the time. It is not likely that you will get seasick as your houseboat is quite wide and stable.

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Will I have any privacy on the lake?

 Absolutely, there are plenty of areas on the lake that you can hang out and be away from others.

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WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING ?

Fishing Vacation Oregon:
Lake Billy Chinook
- Field & Stream
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Thanks so much for your hospitality and patience. We had the time of our lives!
-Marcola Christian Church High School Youth Group


Click the MAP to download a printable map with directions.

Printable PDF Map

Click below to get a printable .pdf file of our brochure.


Lake Billy Chinook Houseboats
P.O. Box 1921, Redmond, OR 97756      Local: 541-504-5951   Toll free: 1-866-546-2939

   HOME   |   THE BOATS   |   THE LAKE   |   THE AREA   |   GETTING HERE   |   FAQ