The source of the Carbon River is from the Carbon Glacier located on Mt. Rainier. It travels 30 miles to where it enters the Puyallup River north of Orting. The Carbon can run cloudy with glacial silt from June through October as the snow melts. As the weather in the mountain gets cold the water becomes gin clear.
Salmon make their way up through the Puyallup River to the Carbon River and the hatchery at Voights Creek, some large king salmon can make it up there around August into September. Also, the coho begin to show in late September, although the main run is in October. The late ones mingle with the chum in November. In odd numbered years the pink salmon come in with the cohos and kings making for an excellent fishing experience.
The wild chum fishery is for catch and release only. In winter you can find white fish. The limits for trout are small so there isn’t much pressure on them. There is a small run of winter hatchery steelhead. This run has dwindled as each year goes by. The bull trout are protected and have to be released. Always check the regulations
If this river has a high water event it may change a fishing hole completely, rerouting the course of the river. When the flow of the river is low the river can be easily waded.
There is a paved walking trail that goes along a small portion of it south of the city of Orting. There is a levee road along most of it that is somewhat accessible, it depends on if property owners allow access.
There is parking at the time of this writing (Nov. 2008) at the end of River Street in Orting and also by the waste treatment plant just north of town. Another place a large amount of people fish is about a half mile down river from the mouth of Voights Creek which is about 2 miles south of Orting on highway 162. Toni P.