Saturday, April 9, 2016

This past week has been a cold week for spring. As a result it did make the steelhead fishing a bit challenging. As much of an inconvenience this cold weather has been, we did need this cold snap. As result the steelhead spawning activities has been slow down significantly. We are now not as far ahead of the normal spring fishing schedule.
The weather forecast for this coming week is supposed to be much warmer. I suspect when the temperatures rebound the fishing activity will most certainly pick up.
Starting with the inland trout fishing; water flows in most of the trout streams are in good to excellent fishing conditions at this time. Keep in mind that, waterfalls this time of year can change quickly. Often we need to just go and check out the situation on favorite trout water.
We are about a week early but it is time to start looking for some bug activity. This coming week is supposed to be warmer and maybe some Hendrickson will be hatching in the afternoons. At the very least there should be some decent fishing with nymphs. Try size 14 and 12 hairs ears and Hendrickson nymphs.
Steelhead fishing in western New York, Appears to be about done for the spring. Obviously this doesn’t mean that there could possibly be a few more fish showing up. However the consistent day-to-day fishing appears to be over. This past week the fishing on the Oak Orchard River was very slim. We were fishing through quite a bit of water for one or two fish. There has been about four weeks of steelhead spawning on the Oak Orchard River.  Over the years, four-week time period is about as long as I have observed for the spring steelhead spawn. If you still intend to try fishing the Oak, keep in mind that the fishing is going to be hit or miss at best.
At the time of writing this update, we are in the process of moving our fishing operation to the Salmon River at Pulaski, full time. We will be fishing here for the rest of the month of April and into early May. With this freezing cold snap I am not concerned about the steelhead run being over earlier than anticipated. We will most likely have steelhead spawning activity until the end of the month and drop back fishing until mid May, Normal fishing schedule. Water flows on the Salmon River as of now are at 500 CFS from the dam, down from 750 CFS. There is rain in the forecast for the upcoming week. Looks like waterfalls will be fluctuating over the next couple of weeks. I do not suspect we’ll see any big water flows for the rest of the steelhead run. Water temperatures this past week were in the mid to upper 30° range. With these colder water temperatures the spawning activity was severely slowed down. A lot of steelhead dropped off and into transition water, the smaller pools and cuts near where they have been spawning. With the cooler water temperatures, we needed to slow the drift down. Back to Stone flies and winter style of fishing.  Once the water temperatures warm-up everything will be back to normal. The swing fishing will be back on, especially in the mid to lower river.
Fly box; not much has changed over the past week. Stoneflies nymphs still getting it done, in size 12 to 10, for the swing, small intruders around two and a half to 3 and half inches long. We have been having the best success with size for size 4 and size 6 Black and brown Willy buggers.

A reminder, I still have dates for spring steelhead fishing April 18,19,20,21 and April 25,26 just opened up. Early May is still open, we call May, swimming season. A great time to fish for steelhead with two-handed rods and a singing fly. Our friend Rick Smith, also has dates available for both April and May. Feel free to call if you have any questions Cell 585-233-0436

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