The Godbout River begins its course from Lake Amariton and is fed by several other streams along its 112-kilometre length. It runs southeastward through the Manicouagan territory over many rapids and impressive waterfalls. The Godbout flows in a spectacular wild boreal forest surrounded by rocky cliffs until it reaches the St. Lawrence River near the town of Godbout, 54 kilometres east of Baie-Comeau.
The Montagnais people referred to the Godbout as Oiauirabugu, which means "swirling river". In the 17th century, it was given a new name in honour of the explorer Nicolas Godbout. There used to be coureurs des bois in the area who would sell their furs, notably seal furs, at a trading post on the river. A story alleges that the legendary fisherman, trapper and naturalist Napoléon-Alexandre Comeau caught 57 salmon on the river on July 9, 1874. In 1980, some 70 kilometres on the river became part of a controlled harvesting zone (ZEC) and is now managed by the Godbout Tourism and Economic Development Committee.
The Godbout River is rather shallow. The water is clear, the flow is moderate and the bottom is dark. In several areas, one can admire the salmon leaping up the river's uneven course. The last 8 km before the mouth of the river should be avoided due to the difficult access and private properties that prevent portaging. There are more than 50 pools spread out over the river's 3 sectors, which are easy to access thanks to a forest road running parallel to the river. The only pools on the river where you will need to fish from a canoe are the Cap-Nord and Gilmour Island pools. The Godbout salmon are generally average in size but the river also has some good sea run brook trout fishing.