Mon., April 23, 2018
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Freshwater Report

Report from Wednesday, April 18.

| New York | Pennsylvania | New Jersey | Last Week's Report |
New York
Salmon River and Western N.Y. Rivers and Streams

Steelheads were crabby in cold water but less than before, said Jay Peck from Jay Peck Guide Service. Whether that was because he figured out the fish better or the steelheads bit more than before, he didn’t know. Trips with him netted an average of five to eight in a day, not bad, considering the conditions. The water was cold because the weather was. Thirty-five degrees was yesterday’s high temperature, and snow showers fell that day. The cold water was delaying spawning. Salmon River was 33 to 35 degrees and ran high at 1,500 cubic feet per second. Jay fished for steelheads on the upper river at water including inside curves, soft seams and some of the pocket water. That was almost like a winter pattern, and the fish seemed to sit in places like that, waiting for warm water. Stoneflies and butter-rum-colored, size-10 egg flies picked the fish. Steelheads barely began to spawn in the Salmon, and will probably be in post-spawn late next week. Conditions seemed to be setting up for good angling for drop-back steelheads in May. Those are steelheads that spawned in the river and are headed back to Lake Ontario to spend summer. They return to rivers in autumn. Two hours to the west, rivers and streams that Jay fishes near Rochester for steelheads were warmer. Oak Orchard River in that area was 42 to 44 degrees. Steelheads were probably in the peak of spawning in those temperatures. Jay and a buddy totaled seven steelheads in a trip on the Oak. The water was medium-high to high and was stained. Steelheads couldn’t really be seen, but if spawning habitat was fished, the fish were hooked. However, after that trip, probably two inches of rain fell Monday in this area, in the huge storm that covered a large part of the U.S. The Oak now was a muddy brown. Smaller streams in this area will probably become fishable today, and rivers there will probably become fishable by the end of the week. After steelheads migrate to the lake, Jay and his guides fish for trout on streams through summer. Trout streams ran high and muddy. Jay specializes in fly-fishing and catch-and-release, and books trips that fish with conventional tackle with his other guides.