In the process of planing a trip to Pulaski, NY later this fall. This is my first time on the river and I was curious if anyone has had experience on the river or where to go. I see there a few places where you can pay to access the water. I'll be driving from Vermont and only have 2-3 days to fish so I was thinking I would pay for a day or two depending of people's recommendation. Would a 7wt fly rod be sufficient for types of fish in that particular river? I've yet to purchase a rod for the trip.I currently only own a 4wt, I was thinking about a 7wt. Something I could use for salmon,steelhead, and pike/bass. Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
I love fishing there. There are plenty of spots that are great fishing and you don't have to pay. The sportsman pool. The tressel pool, compactor pool and ballpark pool. My best friend has been going for 25 years for a fl week each time. He has always caught his daily limit without having to pay at the douglaston run. You can get a map of the pool locations online. Good luck.
In the fall the king salmon are returning in large numbers. A 9 weight rod will be what you need for these fish. The fish can be as large as 40 pounds and you will be glad to have the heavier rod.
I would consider driving over at least once during the summer and becoming familiar with the town and the river before you go for the salmon. I lived down near Williamsport Pennsylvania which was 227 miles from the town and river. The trip took about five and a half hours. I found out that during July or August there was dry fly fishing for everything from small steelhead to Atlantic salmon and no crowds.
I also think that being able to visit the river for a day or 2 when there is no salmon fever going on and no high water is important. You can see the way that the river bottom is laid out on a bright summer day. Knowing where the deep troths are at is real helpful when a dark dreary rainy October day comes along.
If you intend to start fishing this or other rivers in NY. or over on the Canadian side, it will take years to learn the ropes. Once you have things figured out they are no different than going to some local creek half an hour from home. You will know where you're going and it will feel familiar when you get there. I used to fish the same little slot down on the Dougleston Run from when it was ten dollars to fish there until my last trip there in 2002.
The upper river has some good places too but as I said it'll take time to find your own spots. Once you do you're set, the salmon will come the same way every year. They will be in that same slot - behind that submerged boulder etc. every season.
BTW, I only ever took a couple fish and found that I didn't like the taste. Because of that I was a C&R fisher for all those years. Between the taste and the 'consumption advisory' issued by DCNR of New York I do not suggest keeping and eating them.
I would rely on any run count information that may be available from the state fisheries department there to figure the best timing. I used to go whenever I heard reports of fish being caught. Sometimes they come at the end of September and first week of October - other years they came in late August and through September.
Hire a guide.
I use one whether I fish the DSR or drift boat. The place get a lot of traffic and guides get on the DSR first usually taking the boat up the estuary and getting prime spots on the DSR. If their isn't a strong run in the DSR we take the drift boat upriver. The drift boat is an awesome experience. You see tons on huge salmon plus you hit stretches in between the crowds. We hit an area last year, after passing tons on people, where we had the place to ourselves and me and my buddy had about 6 hookups each in about 45 minutes. a guide is $350 and the DSR is $50 a man. That's $225/man. Why skimp? Catch fish!
Also, very important, DONT GO ON THE WEEKEND!!!!!!
You don't really need a guide on the salmon river,When arriving in pulaski stop into Whitaker's sports shop they can point you in the right direction,set you up with flies etc.even hook you up with a guide if you like.I fish up river mostly.Theirs 2 flyfishing only sections,And I hear their full of fish (steelhead) right now. tight lines.