Greater Niagara Region
This coming weekend is the 36th anniversary of the NYPA Wildlife Festival, a two-day celebration of National Hunting and Fishing Day Sept. 24 and 25. Co-sponsored by the Niagara County Federation of Conservation Clubs, stop down to the Power Vista located at 5777 Lewiston Road, Lewiston, adjacent to Niagara University. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day and admission is free. Come on out and have some fun. In addition, if you fished in the Greater Niagara Fish Odyssey Derby last month, the awards ceremony will be at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 25 in the Primate Sanctuary tent in the Wildlife Festival. Some great prizes will be up for grabs. On Saturday, Sept. 24, New York State will be holding another one of its free fishing days. No one needs a fishing license on Saturday, but you do need to abide by the rules and regulations for the body of water you intend to fish. Check out www.dec.ny.gov for details.
The warm weather isn’t helping matters any for staging salmon and trout. Creek flows are now receiving some assistance from water releases in the Erie Canal to assist 18 Mile, the Oak and Sandy Creek as of last week. They should continue for weeks to come. The big news is that this water release program is no longer a pilot program. It is now being adopted as a permanent function each fall to help fishermen. Some salmon and brown trout are being caught off the piers in Wilson and Olcott according to Karen Evarts at The Boat Doctors in Olcott, but it seems only at night. In the harbor, bass, carp, and dogfish are being caught on a variety of baits. Lake action has been tough with recent winds. The most stable water is still out deep, but only if you can get out there. The inshore bite is early in the morning. Staging salmon are being taken in 40 to 60 feet of water but timing is critical. You need to be on the water before the sun even thinks about rising with flasher-fly combos, meat rigs, J-plugs, and glow spoons.
As the waters continue to cool, there should be a decent run of fish making their way up the river next week. A few salmon and walleye are also being caught at the NYPA Fishing Platform reports Lisa Drabczyk with Creek Road Bait and Tackle in Lewiston. Use blade baits for walleye, jigging spoons and skein for salmon. Walleye and bass are still cooperating on the Niagara Bar and around Fort Niagara. Drabczyk noted that one angler caught a 23-pound salmon from his kayak while fishing near Joe Davis State Park. Salmon are being caught in the lower river, but it’s a little sporadic according to Mike Ziehm of Niagara Falls. He has caught a couple from shore, but he has been losing more than he is catching due to their size. They appear to prefer the oxygenated water. Ziehm has been using his chartreuse spinners, but red will also work on occasion. Water has been clear with 6-foot-plus visibility.
- The Kings have returned home, and they brought some Cohos too!
- Lake fishing is more challenging now, but we have some tips below to help you end your season on a high note.
- Watch “The Voice of the Salmon River” on Facebook or YouTube.
There have been good reports of salmon at the dam. Fishing the fast water with egg imitation flies and rubber eggs is your best bet. Anglers have also been catching fish off the high wall floating skein under floats and casting deep diving plugs.
Fish have been entering the river at a steady pace since last week, with a few big pushes mixed in. This has helped to spread fish throughout the river.
The water is still on the warmer side and fish have been moving. Therefore, concentrate on the shoots and riffles. The best baits have been egg imitations in a variety of colors: red, orange, chart and blue. Jensen eggs, fire Balls and soft beads are other go-to recommendations.
Popular flies include: glo bugs, comets and Eztaz: cheese, orange, magenta and red are all popular.
Fishing on the lake has become more challenging with the first waves of salmon entering the rivers. But if you’re looking to get out on your boat a few last times, then concentrate on the river mouth early and move out to where you find 58-63 degree water near the bottom.
Flasher fly combos:
Got tamale/ mirage fly
Yellow jeans/hammer fly
Jacks Pretty girl/uv 190 fly
Green/ green glo
J plugs: Grn glo & Glow are working the best. Mag spoons are still taking a few too.
Free Fishing Guide
The 68-page guide includes a detailed overview of fishing opportunities on eastern Lake Ontario, Oneida Lake, the Oswego and Salmon rivers and a variety of other tributaries, as well as the more than 40,000 acres of public lands available for hunting.