Upstate and Western New York Fishing Report – July 15, 2021

West Marine

Tom Wilson and his son Trevor of Lewiston had a great morning fishing kings this week with Capt. Matt Yablonsky of Wet Net Charters out of Wilson. Trevor is an avid fisherman according to Yablonsky. The father and son try to get out fishing as much as they can, especially the lower Niagara River. Trevor wanted to catch a salmon so the Wilson’s booked a date in late June. However, they had to cancel due to weather. Trevor had to wait a few more weeks for his fishing trip. This past Tuesday was the day. Trevor caught his limit of kings without any help, including the fish of the day. This is what charter fishing is all about.

Tom Wilson and his son Trevor
Tom Wilson and his son Trevor with a dandy king salmon youth Trevor reeled in while fishing with Capt. Matt Yablonsky of Wet Net Charters this week.

Yablonsky said that they fished the inside waters out of Wilson, targeting 80-150 feet of water. All the fish came on A-Tom-Mik meat rigs with Dreamweaver ballyhoo. With the Lake Ontario Trout and Salmon Association’s Club Tournaments happening this weekend, it was surprising anglers were willing to share information this week.

Matt Sturgeon
Matt Sturgeon of Arizona was fishing with John Van Hoff of North Tonawanda and Kevin Guenther of Niagara Falls when he caught this 27-pound salmon on the Niagara Bar over the weekend.

On the Niagara Bar, John Van Hoff of North Tonawanda was doing a little pre-fishing for the LOTSA events, hitting the red can over the weekend. He did well on mature kings up to 27 pounds which placed high in the summer LOC Derby going on right now through July 25. His buddy Wade Winch of North Tonawanda was on a second boat with his wife, Lisa, and she reeled in a 29-1/2-pound king using cut bait. For Van Hoff, they were targeting the drop in 70 to 120 feet of water and all their big fish came on flasher-fly combos. Capt. Joe Oakes of Newfane reports that when the lake sets up again there are salmon inside of 300 feet between Wilson and Olcott. Right after the northeast winds, the bite seemed to be better in 300 to 400 feet for a mix of salmon and steelhead. Spoons and flasher-fly ran in the top 70 feet seemed to work best for Oakes. Speaking of the LOTSA club tournaments, if you were planning on going to the weigh-in and picnic on Saturday, the event has been moved from Krull Park to the Olcott Harbor Campground and Resort along Route 18 across from The Boat Doctors. Karen Evarts at the Boat Docs reported good action in the harbor for perch, rock bass, and smallmouth bass. Hot baits out in the lake have been purples, froggy stuff and anything with dots.

Mike Rzucidlo
Mike Rzucidlo of Niagara Falls hit the gorge this week and caught walleye and bass from shore using jigs and spinners.

In the Niagara River, Mike Rzucidlo of Niagara Falls hit the gorge area from shore along Artpark and caught both walleye and bass casting spinners and jigs this week. The moss has not been much of a problem, and it looks like it is “game on” for both shore and boat fishermen. For boaters targeting bass, spinnerbaits and drop shot rigs have been working best this week. Lisa Drabczyk of Creek Road Bait and Tackle in Lewiston reports that some walleye and bass have been caught off the NYPA platform. Bass and the occasional walleye are also being caught from boats at Lewiston, Youngstown and Fort Niagara. Burt Lickers of Niagara Falls is still leading the Walleye Division in the Summer LOC with a 10-pound, 10-ounce ‘eye from the river fishing with the Killer B’s.

The summer LOC Derby is still going strong and there were plenty of changes the past week. There were two 30-pound king salmon caught to take the lead for the Grand Prize, but it turned out that both involved people on the boat that were not registered properly. Finally, Michael Paddock of Albion weighed in a 31-pound, 7-ounce king to take over the lead on Tuesday. John Gordon of Rochester weighed in a 19-pound, 15-ounce brown trout to take the top spot. Leading lake trout is now Hope Starling of St. Pete’s, Florida, weighing a fish that recorded 23 pounds, 11 ounces. Check the leaderboard at

Oswego County

Report is Courtesy of the Oswego County Department of Community Development, Tourism and Planning

Lake Ontario Report:

Overall fishing remains challenging. The winds and unstable weather have caused the thermocline to rise up high and a lot of the fish have scattered. But we’ve seen some massive fish to make up for it.


The following report is courtesy of Captain Pete Lahosky of Prime Time Sport Fishing.

If brown trout are your target, the best waters have been 20 to 30 FOW water, both a little west and east of Oswego. We’re working hard but it’s paid off with some big browns.

This past week saw three fish brought into the dock by Oswego charters pushing the 20-pound mark! Some true giants with the largest being a 22-pound brown taken by Captain Jon Wilbur of Kingfisher Charters. Short leadcore lines in 1 to 5 sections with natural color Michigan stingers have been the ticket here. Hot patterns have been black UV, green alewife and black wiggle.

Kayla Clark
Kayla Clark from Orange County NY
Holding a large chinook salmon aboard Addicted Guide Service

Salmon fishing has been a little slow with the cold water scattering the kings. The charter fleet has been venturing far offshore from 200 to 700 feet of water Northwest off Oswego to find some action.

Michigan stingray spoons fished in the top 60 feet of water have provided the most consistent bite on salmon and steelhead. Best colors are black UV,green UV,chicken wing and UV green alewife. Flashers with meat rigs are also taking some kings down in the cold water. Our go-to patterns are green jeans, white green dot and Valium.

Our biggest advice for kings is to target them in the 46 to 60° temperature range and don’t be afraid to speed up, trolling at 2.8 to 3.2 mph.

Jared Mengle
Jared Mengle (seen to the left) from Mountain Top PA holding a 53.5-inch musky, caught on a Michigan Stinger Spoon aboard Prime Time Sportfishing

The surprise catch of the week was taken by angler Jared Mengle on board Prime Time with a 53 1/2 inch musky taken on a Michigan Stinger spoon off the Little Salmon River. A true Lake Ontario giant, the musky was released unharmed after a quick photo. Congratulations Jared!

This week all of the charter captains are looking for some west wind to stabilize the water temperatures off Oswego to provide more consistent conditions.

Now get out and get ‘em!!


The Mexico Bay report is courtesy of Captain Mike Ford of Reel Addicted Guide Service.

The south winds have made fishing in Mexico bay tough. Although we’ve still seen some giant brown trout caught this week. We’ve been running north to the pond to find our salmon and steelhead where the bite has been consistent. We’ve been mostly covering 120-150 FOW, most bites are coming 35-70ft down.

All of our fish have been taken on spoons and meat rigs. Hot spoons have been Michigan Stinger yellow killer, lances 2 face, uv nbk, black widow and black wiggle. The meat program has been headed up by protroll 8 and 11 inch flashed with Atommik meat rigs.

Tight lines everyone!

Oswego River Report

Summer means a mixed bag on the Oswego River. Anglers can target bass, carp, walleye, and pan fish. Occasionally a summer run steelhead or Atlantic salmon is spotted in the mix too.

Our recommendation for walleye is to fish on the west side, between the two bridges, especially at night. Most walleye setups will get the job done.

Please check our website for the current CFS, and check back in late-August for the fall salmon report.

Please check our website for the current CFS, and check back in late-August for the fall salmon report.

Please Consider the Following Year-Round Notice: There are mandatory personal flotation device (PFD) zones on the river. For more information, visit our website at and click on the Fishing Report along the top bar on the home page. The Oswego Fire Department
offers loaner life jackets at no charge through its “Loaner for Life” program. For more information contact the fire station at 35 E. Cayuga St. by calling 315-343-2161.

Click here for the Brookfield Varick Fish Safely brochure

Click here for the current water flow

Year-Round Notice: There are mandatory personal flotation device (PFD) zones on the river. For more information, visit our website at and click on the Fishing Report along the top bar on the home page. The Oswego Fire Department offers loaner life jackets at no charge through its “Loaner for Life” program. For more information contact the fire station at 35 E. Cayuga St. by calling 315-343-2161.

Click here for the Brookfield Varick Fish Safely brochure.

Click here for the current water flow.

Salmon River Report:

This time of year usually means bass on the Salmon River. Smallmouth can be very aggressive, so our biggest recommendation is to try a lot of pockets and keep moving throughout the day. They will hit anything from a juicy fly to a crank bait.

Northern pike are also caught at the mouth around port Ontario.

There are lots of boat launches and marinas on the Salmon River, but we recommend calling ahead to make sure the water is high enough to launch. Please check our website for the river CFS, and check back in late-August for the fall salmon report.

Oneida Lake Report:

Walleye season opened the second weekend of May, and with an average depth of 22’ bass can be caught throughout most of the lake. We recommend first-timers who are targeting bass to try the mouth of the Oneida River as well, since it’s easy to identify where the cover is.

Check out our website for more information on charters.

Check out our website for more information on charters.

Sandy Pond Report:

The main points of access for Sandy Pond are: Greenpoint, “The Elms,” Wigwam, and the new DEC launch at Stanley Drive.

Popular species throughout the summer include bullhead, crappie, pan fish, northerns, bass, walleye, and the occasional pickerel.

Check back with us in January for our ice fishing report.

Wayne County Fishing Update

Chris Kenyon

Lake Ontario

Some big kings were coming from Sodus Bay west to Bear Creek or Hughes’ Marina. Flasher flies, cut bait, and spoons still work on the kings. Carbon 14 is still the hot lure.

Over the weekend the 250 to 350 fow was the starting point. Set riggers to 80 to 90 fow for temp breaks.
The Oswego Pro-Am was last week with the Sodus Pro-Am this week.

The LOC Summer Derby started Saturday, June 26th and runs until Sunday July 25th. Awards at Captain Jacks in Sodus Point @ 3pm.


Took a boat ride on Sodus Bay Sunday afternoon and spent too much time quartering the waves left by recreational boats. If you want to fish Sodus for bass start @5 am.

Sodus Bay has plenty of weed cover for largemouth bass. Fish worm rigs off any point and you’ll hook-up.

Port Bay public launching is at the north end. The south-end ramp is still being repaired. The north barrier road is rough so take it easy towing your trailer.

Wayne County Soil and Water Conservation District and the Federation of Sportsmen Clubs are pleased to announce the 22nd Wayne County Youth Fishing Derby for anglers ages 4-16. The event runs June 19th-July 31st, 2021and covers the waters in Wayne County.

The 2021 New York State fishing guide can be found at for downloading and printing at home. Production of hard copies is finished and have been delivered to License Issuing Agents. Hard copies can be requested by emailing

Erie Canal

Widewaters in Newark and the section west of Lyons has been the hotspot for bass. The canal water is high because of recent rainfall. It is muddy; however, the bass are hitting along the southern shoreline.

Keep informed from the NYS Canal web for changes and restrictions with canal waters. Keep informed about 2021 canal hours. (There will be no fees for the 2021 canal boating season.) May 21st is the scheduling for the canal opening. Hours are 7 am till 5pm. Stay informed with the below web page.

Safety Precautions from DEC

While enjoying the outdoors, please continue to follow the CDC/New York State Department of Health guidelines (leaves DEC’s website) for preventing the spread of colds, flu, and COVID-19:

  • Try to keep at least six (6) feet of distance between you and others.
  • Avoid close contact, such as shaking hands, hugging, and kissing.
  • Wash hands often or use a hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid surfaces that are touched often, such as doorknobs, handrails, and playground equipment.

When fishing, DEC recommends avoiding busy waters and following the guidelines on DEC’s website about fishing responsibly in New York State. If an angler arrives at a parking lot and there are several cars, they should consider going to another parking lot. If an angler is fishing upstream, they should fish downstream of the other angler or consider fishing another day. Anglers fishing from boats should be able to maintain at least six feet of distance between one another. For more information about the benefits of being outdoors safely and responsibly, go to DEC’s website.

New York State is open for fishing and DEC encourages anglers to recreate locally at a nearby waterbody. New York’s lakes and streams offer great opportunities for fishing in a wide array of settings across the state. Even during the current COVID-19 public health crisis, getting outdoors and connecting with nature while angling in New York’s waters is a great way to help maintain mental and physical health.

Orleans County

This week’s fishing report provided by Rick Hajecki and Crazy Yankee Sportfishing

Tom and his crew from Pennsylvania joined us Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning. Boy did they hit it just right! This will go down as a trip of a lifetime for them as well as for us. We hooked a lot of fish both days. Saturday’s afternoon trip was one of the best we’ve seen. It was so good we turned two doubles on the same rod, and caught a Coho on a meat rig that was dragging on the surface in the prop wash. The highlight though, was landing everyone’s personal best Salmon weighing in at 34.67 lbs. (Pictured below)

Crazy Yankee Sportfishing salmon

Saturday afternoon we fished 150-200′ in water a few miles west of Port. Our Cannon Downriggers parked at 30 & 40′ with spoons back 30′ were our hottest setups. Geezer and Frost Bite were the best spoons. The beast was part of a triple. First fish took a deep meat rig. When that fish hit the deck, the big boy hit the 200′ diver and headed for Niagara county. Minutes later the 150′ A-TOM-MIK copper took a ride. We landed both and the high fives were endless.

Sunday morning started out like gangbusters. Same setup as the night before. Our best spoons were Geezer, UV Watermelon, Midnight Special, Wonderbread, and 42nd. Most action came on our Cannon Downriggers fished 30-50′ down with sliders. Divers fired from 90-115′ out on 2.5 settings. 10 colors of FishUSA Stealthcore and A-TOM-MIK coppers in 150′ & 200′ took fish.

West Marine store finder

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