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Northeast Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. Post fishing reports, ask for information, discuss this area...

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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 11-04-2013, 07:11 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

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Originally Posted by djamtime View Post
What kind of fishing do you plan on doing?? Nymphing, swinging, pinning, spin gear? There are hundreds of guides if not more. Alot of them swear by different kinds of fishing. I would look for one who advertises the style you are into.. He is probably the one with the best chance to put you on fish. Beware, there are some guides who believe snagging(lining) is fishing.
You may be a little over my head dj. The short uneducated answer would be fly fish. For my son, it would be great if there was some spinning tackle as a backup if he can't make it work with a fly rod.

I like to fly fish - streamers, nymphs, drys. Not sure what you mean by swinging or pinning. I've never fished the Salmon River or fished for steelhead. That's why I want to hire a guide. I'm hoping the guide can get us to the fish and help us figure out what to do to catch them - preferably with a fly rod.

For the snagging... I'm a catch and release kind of guy - don't believe in cheating. I want the fish I catch to live so they can get bigger and be even more fun the next time I catch them!!
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Old 11-05-2013, 11:38 AM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

I just went to the Salmon River last month. I didn't see anyone using dries, but heard that streamers work well. If you're nymphing and wading, which is what I did, my advice would be you don't really need to spend the money on a guide.

I did and he just took me to the DSR, which I already knew about.

The center of town is nuts. Avoid.

The DSR is good, just get in early and find some decent water - the fish are everywhere. Still a number of folks.

If you drive around you'll see a couple cars parked on the side of the road here and there. Pull over, and there will likely be a path which will take you to areas of the river that are far less inhabited.

There's also the sportsmans pool which should have fewer people than the center of town. I think I got lucky with very few people there, most casting spinning gear in the pool itself and none in the faster moving water. I imagine that area can get pretty crowded as the parking lot is large, though.

Really though, the fish are everywhere. If you find some deepish fast moving water and nymph through it, you'll probably get lucky.

This was my first time and I was only there for a few days so I didn't really experiment much. My guide was fine but if I get one again it'll be someone with a drift boat. We really only used peg eggs and estaz flies and I didn't learn much. It was kinda like paying someone to help with the net.
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Old 11-05-2013, 11:44 AM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

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Originally Posted by 4wt View Post
I just went to the Salmon River last month. I didn't see anyone using dries, but heard that streamers work well. If you're nymphing and wading, which is what I did, my advice would be you don't really need to spend the money on a guide.

I did and he just took me to the DSR, which I already knew about.

The center of town is nuts. Avoid.

The DSR is good, just get in early and find some decent water - the fish are everywhere. Still a number of folks.

If you drive around you'll see a couple cars parked on the side of the road here and there. Pull over, and there will likely be a path which will take you to areas of the river that are far less inhabited.

There's also the sportsmans pool which should have fewer people than the center of town. I think I got lucky with very few people there, most casting spinning gear in the pool itself and none in the faster moving water. I imagine that area can get pretty crowded as the parking lot is large, though.

Really though, the fish are everywhere. If you find some deepish fast moving water and nymph through it, you'll probably get lucky.

This was my first time and I was only there for a few days so I didn't really experiment much. My guide was fine but if I get one again it'll be someone with a drift boat. We really only used peg eggs and estaz flies and I didn't learn much. It was kinda like paying someone to help with the net.
Thanks for the info!

1. Who was your guide? It sounds like you would not recommend him. Is that correct?
2. How was the fishing? Numbers caught? Trying to get an idea of how active things will be for my 11 year old son.

My plan is to find a guide and do a 2 day float trip. I figure fishing from a boat will be safer and more enjoyable for my 11 year old son.
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Old 11-05-2013, 08:34 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

PM sent. You'll hook in to a lot but it's easy to mis-hook just due to the number of fish in the river so you need to be ready to break a line.

I saw lots of folks in the center of Pulaski deliberately and blatantly snagging.
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Old 11-05-2013, 08:49 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

You might want to consider Bob Shannon. He owns The Fly Rod Shop in Stowe, VT - and apparently grew up on the Salmon & guides there each fall. I know of a couple of people who were thrilled with their experiences.

start here:

Salmon & Steelhead Trips Pulaski, NY | The Fly Rod Shop

Best...
VTD
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Old 11-05-2013, 09:58 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

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Originally Posted by 4wt View Post
PM sent. You'll hook in to a lot but it's easy to mis-hook just due to the number of fish in the river so you need to be ready to break a line.

I saw lots of folks in the center of Pulaski deliberately and blatantly snagging.
4wt,

Got the pm. Thanks for the info. It is much appreciated.

I'm not into the snagging thing. If it helps, I just spent 4 days fly fishing in Garret County, MD. I've begun tying my own flies. After reading one of Lefty Kreh's books, I tried tying some woolly buggers the way Lefty said to tie them and had an absolutely fantastic long weekend fly fishing. Many rainbows were caught with my biggest being an honest 21 inches! The best part was that every fish caught was done so with a fly I tied myself!!

Getting back to that 21 inch rainbow... I went to a lot of trouble making sure that fish was okay prior to releasing it. I tried to keep him in the water and made sure it had ample time to recover prior to releasing it. That's the kind of fly fisherman I am.

---------- Post added at 10:58 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:57 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by vtd View Post
You might want to consider Bob Shannon. He owns The Fly Rod Shop in Stowe, VT - and apparently grew up on the Salmon & guides there each fall. I know of a couple of people who were thrilled with their experiences.

start here:

Salmon & Steelhead Trips Pulaski, NY | The Fly Rod Shop

Best...
VTD
Thanks VTD, I will check him out.
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Old 11-07-2013, 04:51 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

First of all, this sounds like quite a father and son fishing trip you are planning. I'm sure it will provide both of you a lifetime of memories.

I see that you've already gotten plenty of suggestions here already, but I'd like to add a few additional observations, based on my own 30-40 years of extensive fishing on the Salmon River (I loose track of the exact number!)

First of all, I think you are right on the money as to the time of year, and getting a guide with a drift boat. An 11 year old might be able to fish a number of places on the river at time with no problems, but they could also easily fall in and drown before you'd know it, so there's no question in my mind that a drift boat would be the far better option. Keep in mind though that it's impossible to predict the water flows and weather more than a relatively short time in advance, and it's altogether possible that there could be too low or even too high a water flow, or a snow blizzard, for example, that could significantly effect the fishing.

While the fishing there can be quite good, it can also be very slow, so I wouldn't ever go there expecting to always catch fish - I've had 20 steelhead days, and I've had 0 steelhead days, and I'm sure more 0 than 20 fish days. A day of several steelhead landed is a good day there by anyone's standard.

Second, there are many so-called "guides" on the Salmon River that are really bad, so it pays to select very carefully. Some of them are also prone to exaggeration of the truth, and I wouldn't feel comfortable myself being guided by someone that constantly brags about his fishing expertise, but others might be happy to hire them. One long time guide there that I'd feel comfortable with is Dave Barber: see his website at StrikeSilver.com. I have't seen him for a couple years though, so I don't know how much guiding he is actually doing these days.

Lastly, go prepared with the proper clothing to keep you both dry and warm, keeping in mind that you could have anything from sunshine, to torrential rain, to a whiteout snowstorm - and maybe all 3 in the same day. If you're prepared for it, no problem. But if not, it can turn a memorable day into a nightmare.

Have fun, John
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Old 11-07-2013, 10:28 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

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Originally Posted by mt_flyfisher View Post
First of all, this sounds like quite a father and son fishing trip you are planning. I'm sure it will provide both of you a lifetime of memories.

I see that you've already gotten plenty of suggestions here already, but I'd like to add a few additional observations, based on my own 30-40 years of extensive fishing on the Salmon River (I loose track of the exact number!)

First of all, I think you are right on the money as to the time of year, and getting a guide with a drift boat. An 11 year old might be able to fish a number of places on the river at time with no problems, but they could also easily fall in and drown before you'd know it, so there's no question in my mind that a drift boat would be the far better option. Keep in mind though that it's impossible to predict the water flows and weather more than a relatively short time in advance, and it's altogether possible that there could be too low or even too high a water flow, or a snow blizzard, for example, that could significantly effect the fishing.

While the fishing there can be quite good, it can also be very slow, so I wouldn't ever go there expecting to always catch fish - I've had 20 steelhead days, and I've had 0 steelhead days, and I'm sure more 0 than 20 fish days. A day of several steelhead landed is a good day there by anyone's standard.

Second, there are many so-called "guides" on the Salmon River that are really bad, so it pays to select very carefully. Some of them are also prone to exaggeration of the truth, and I wouldn't feel comfortable myself being guided by someone that constantly brags about his fishing expertise, but others might be happy to hire them. One long time guide there that I'd feel comfortable with is Dave Barber: see his website at StrikeSilver.com. I have't seen him for a couple years though, so I don't know how much guiding he is actually doing these days.

Lastly, go prepared with the proper clothing to keep you both dry and warm, keeping in mind that you could have anything from sunshine, to torrential rain, to a whiteout snowstorm - and maybe all 3 in the same day. If you're prepared for it, no problem. But if not, it can turn a memorable day into a nightmare.

Have fun, John
Hi FlyFisher,

Thanks for the info and all the insight!

I'm trying to find the best bang for the buck for both me and my son. Catching the steelhead run seemed like the closest thing I could find to a guaranteed big fish for my son and a good time for me. I have my fingers crossed it works out that way!

I considered fishing the salmon run during a warmer part of the year. The problem was the shoulder to shoulder fishing stories I kept hearing about. I just didn't see that being as much fun for an 11 year old.

I'll look into Dave Barber.

Thanks again!!
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:54 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

Having fished around and observed many guides, met many, and have some as friends, honestly the best I've seen for your description is George O'brien.Salmon River Fishing Guide in New York Very well respected. His web page is all kids and women. I've seen him talk neophyte anglers through landing some very large steelhead. Not only that, but he's a nice guy, who's funny. I 'd give him some consideration. Floating the river, you rarely get skunked. I've managed at least one every trip. Wading, that's not the case. Other guides and all my friends who are, speak highly of him. Two other names of note are Loren Williams and Jay Peck. Both great fly fishing guides, will provide spinning rods and technique, too. I spend a lot of days on the SR, it's a great fishery. Have a wonderful trip.
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Old 11-11-2013, 09:07 PM
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Default Re: Need a Good Salmon River Guide

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Having fished around and observed many guides, met many, and have some as friends, honestly the best I've seen for your description is George O'brien.Salmon River Fishing Guide in New York Very well respected. His web page is all kids and women. I've seen him talk neophyte anglers through landing some very large steelhead. Not only that, but he's a nice guy, who's funny. I 'd give him some consideration. Floating the river, you rarely get skunked. I've managed at least one every trip. Wading, that's not the case. Other guides and all my friends who are, speak highly of him. Two other names of note are Loren Williams and Jay Peck. Both great fly fishing guides, will provide spinning rods and technique, too. I spend a lot of days on the SR, it's a great fishery. Have a wonderful trip.
Thanks Fichy!!
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