Palmer Creek (Yamhill River)

Palmer Creek is a tributary of the Yamhill River in northwestern Oregon in the United States. Arising in Polk County it flows north, crossing almost immediately into Yamhill County. It continues generally north, entering the larger stream at Dayton, 5 miles (8 km) upstream of the Yamhill's confluence with the Willamette River.[3]

Palmer Creek
Palmer Creek from Oregon Route 221 at Dayton
Location of the mouth of Palmer Creek in Oregon
CountryUnited States
RegionWillamette Valley
CountyPolk, Yamhill
Physical characteristics
SourceEola Hills
  locationPolk County
  coordinates45°04′04″N 123°08′35″W[1]
  elevation1,037 ft (316 m)[2]
MouthYamhill River
Dayton, Yamhill County
45°13′17″N 123°04′16″W[1]
105 ft (32 m)[1]

Its two named tributaries from source to mouth are Holdridge Creek and West Fork Palmer Creek. The main stem passes under Oregon Route 221 in Dayton.[3]

Palmer Creek was named after pioneer Joel Palmer; before, it was known as Smith Creek.[4][5] It flows through private agricultural lands and is highly denuded by residual pesticides.[6] Palmer Creek flows year-round because water from the Willamette River is diverted into the creek so it can be used for irrigation.[7]


Coastal cutthroat trout move into Palmer Creek from the Yamhill River during the autumn and winter, and a small number of them remain through summertime. Other fish that inhabit the Yamhill River and the lower section of Palmer Creek are carp, goldfish, largescale sucker, chiselmouth, redside shiner, peamouth chub, northern squawfish, sculpin, dace and Pacific lamprey.[8]

See also


  1. "Palmer Creek". Geographic Names Information System (GNIS). United States Geological Survey. November 28, 1980. Retrieved July 23, 2009.
  2. Google Earth elevation for GNIS coordinates
  3. "United States Topographic Map". United States Geological Survey. Retrieved March 9, 2016 via Acme Mapper. The map includes mile markers along the Yamhill River.
  4. Lang, William L. "Joel Palmer (1810-1881)". The Oregon Encyclopedia. Portland State University. Retrieved July 11, 2014.
  5. Stoller, Ruth; Yamhill County Historical Society, eds. (1976). Old Yamhill: The Early History of Its Towns and Cities. Hillsboro, Oregon: Binford & Mort. pp. 13–15. ISBN 9780832304705.
  6. John Shewey (2007). Complete Angler's Guide to Oregon. Belgrade, Montana: Wilderness Adventures Press. p. 173. ISBN 978-1-932098-31-0. Retrieved April 14, 2009.
  7. Craven Consulting Group (April 2009). "Finding of No Significant Impact: Palmer Creek Water District Improvement Company, Proposed Water Service Contract, Willamette River Basin Project, Yamhill County, Oregon" (PDF). Bureau of Reclamation. p. 5. Retrieved July 11, 2014.
  8. "City of Dayton: Planning Atlas and Comprehensive Plan" (PDF). June 2008. p. 11. Retrieved July 11, 2014.
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