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Old 04-25-2014, 11:44 AM
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Default Wading the Salmon River

I just returned from a trip to the Salmon River yesterday on my way home from Rochester NY. April 24, 2014. I noticed the river was high and fast and kind of cloudy. I stopped at the the Compactor Pool and the Sportsman's Pool South. I didn't see any wad-able water.
Does any one have any ideas where the wad-able areas are and did I go too early in the season for Spring Steelhead ??? Thanks
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:46 PM
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Default Re: Wading the Salmon River

The guys who are fishing it regular will have some feedback for you I'm sure but....... I used to fish it a lot. Hitting it right in spring is tough, common sense tells us there should be a push of fresh fish in April / May and there is. The problem is locating them. By the sounds of it you have the right conditions to bring spring run fish in but not so good for wading or being able to actually see a fish. There should be fish at this time and the best way for you to gage numbers would be to stop by the hatchery at Altmar to see how many are holding at the mouth of Beaver Brook. Because they don't die after eggs & milt are removed there will be many fish slowly dropping down the upper river. I expect they go down rather slowly and may be a little shell shocked after the stripping & milking process. Find the page for the USGS river gage at Pineville and when you are there with the water conditions being perfect, be sure to look at the gage data for that day. Once I know what the gage levels are for perfect conditions I am always able to tell if a trip is worth the effort. We used to do this by telephone back in the day before the internet, with the net you can do this with an I Phone now............ I do this here because some destinations are up to 300 miles from home.

There are many spots where wading is good but once the river is up a foot, or much past 1000 on the flow chart then it gets trickier by the 100 and once it goes over 1000 be careful. If I recall correctly flows in the 750 - 950 range are perfect, clear water and safe wading.

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Old 04-25-2014, 01:15 PM
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Default Re: Wading the Salmon River

Ard has given you great advice. The tresel pool is great for wading but this time of year is rough. In the spring time under 1000 cfs is manageable. You have to find some of the smaller creeks that run off the river when the water is running above 1000 cfs.


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Old 04-25-2014, 02:25 PM
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Default Re: Wading the Salmon River

Another +1 for 'bookmarking' the USGS river gauges for the streams that you fish. For the Rogue River you dial a 800 number and get the flow out of Wm. Jess damn then a few key strokes and look at the flows. Back in the 'good old days' a couple of them even gave you a 'turbidity reading.

You had the top 60 miles of the river 'nailed down tight.' Another cup of coffee at your desk or dump it into the 'travel cup' and get your butt into the Jeep. Skip Starbucks, the best coffee going around here is a local 7-11 ... I kid you not. And ninety-nine cents if you bring your own container.

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Old 04-25-2014, 03:34 PM
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Default Re: Wading the Salmon River

The DSR has been closed for almost a week because flows were over 2000. I think they actually went to 3000. They reopened today as flows are down to 1800.

I heard guys were actually fishing in one of the parking lots a few days ago.


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Old 04-27-2014, 08:22 AM
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Default Re: Wading the Salmon River

I was up there the week before and flows were 5200cfc at the dam and over 6000cfs on the Pineville gauge - due to the snow melt at Tug Hill - thankfully we found a few creeks and tribs to fish in the area - there was very definite flow thru the flooded parking lot in Altmar - I heard that the DEC issued summonses to the guys catching fish in the lot - don't really know why - but seeing the river at these volumes was impressive - the surrounding woods flooded with moving water and drainage ditches (that we usually cross dry) full of water and holding fish - by the time I left the river was down to 2500cfs - still unfishable - the Salmon river is usually best for me at 500-750cfs.
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Old 04-27-2014, 12:08 PM
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Default Re: Wading the Salmon River

Thanks guys, all good advice....I'll keep my eye on the flows at 1000 or less.
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