Hi everybody. It looks like people were catching fish about everywhere last week (May 28-June 3, 2012). Hopefully there are a lot of happy anglers out there. For those who like to fish the Clearwater River basin, I have some good news. It appears that survival of migrating adults between Bonneville Dam and McNary Dam was higher than we typically see which has increased our projected harvest share to above 5,000 fish (see table below). The bad news is survival for the Rapid River fish in this same reach appears lower than expected and has resulted in a lower projected harvest share estimate for these fish. These differences in survival are largely based upon when these runs migrated through the fisheries on the Columbia. Rapid River fish came a little earlier this year which made them more susceptible to harvest. The final harvest share estimate will be based on the number of fish that pass over Lower Granite Dam, so these harvest shares could still change some. There was considerable harvest in the Lower Snake River (between Ice Harbor and Lower Granite) so we will have to wait and see how this influences our harvest share. (Click 'read more' for more information.)
Recent Articles: fishing
I haven't missed going up and fishing for steelhead on the Salmon in 20 years. I look forward to it all year. This year I took a friend who had never been steelhead fishing. When we arrived I walked him down to a hole that has always been successful for me. I was explaining the hole to him and kind of where to cast and what to feel for. Anyway I took his pole and cast out the line (this was the very first cast of the trip) to kind of show him how to do things. It hadn't been in the water only 10 seconds and Wham!! There he was! I handed the pole to him and he reeled in his first steelhead - a wild one! Second steelhead of the day was smaller but a keeper. Good Times!!
- Lance Murray
Oct 10 2010. Sun up found us launching at Heller Bar. By noon we had released a native salmon, caught a hatchery 15 lb steelhead and shot a handful of chukars. A sack lunch on the white sandy beach of the Snake River didn't compare to the dinner yet to come. We hooked into a couple more steelies, but couldn't keep 'em on. As the sun went behind the Oregon Blues the smallmouth started to bite. Harvesting a few for dinner, we made a course for the cabin. Before we could even take one bite of our all Idaho dinnerm which consisted of Chukar Surprise over potatoes and fried bass, the sturgeon rod went nuts. 45 minutes later the 7.5 foot fish finally cooperated for a quick pic and healthy release.
- Eric Hart 'n friends
Slightly warmer weather this weekend allowed more anglers to come out then the previous weekend, and they had more success. Fishing actually improved this weekend with the hours per fish caught dropping or holding steady in all sections. The season is definitely slowing down and beginning to wrap up, but as long as above freezing temperatures continue to persist and keep the slush ice away, the fishing should remain solid.
Also, this will be the last report issued for the Fall 2011 season.
"I call this picture a good days work. This was my first serious year of salmon fishing and I was determined to catch salmon with a bobber jig set up. It took me five days before my first hit. It was at the end of my drift and I had a good hook up and after five spectacular jumps the fish spit the hook. In the next three hours I had two more hits and successfully hooked up and landed both of them."
- David Kalanick
"My Dad and I up at Stanley with a couple of steelhead. Mine is BIGGER."
- John Keaney
"Caught this one at Granite Lake, i.e. the confluence of the Snake and Clearwater Rivers, at the state line. Reeled it in about 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 8th. We had been on the river since about 6 a.m. that day. Using mostly purple shrimp for bait."
- Steve Miller
"It was a lot of fun to catch this fish on the Salmon River just upstream from White Bird. This was my first Idaho Steelhead."
- A.J. Balukoff
"I caught my first ever steelhead on a solo stop in the spring 2011 near the Yankee Fork on the Upper Salmon. Luckily an experienced old-timer was right next to me on the bank to coach me through it since I had never hooked one before (and took the photo too!). It was so much fun and especially great to share the excitement with strangers fishing next to me."
More than 250 steelhead will be stocked in the Boise River on Thursday, November 10, the first of four planned stocking efforts during the next few weeks. The fish will be stocked from Glenwood Bridge to Barber Park. Additional stockings are planned for Thursday, November 17, Tuesday, November 22 and Thursday, December 1, weather permitting.
Because of their size - six to 12 pounds - the actual number of steelhead stocked will depend on the capacity of the tanker truck hauling the fish from Oxbow Hatchery on the Snake River.
Anglers hoping to tangle with one of the hatchery steelhead need a $12.75 steelhead permit and a fishing license. Barbless hooks are not required for Boise River steelhead fishing, unlike other steelhead waters.
All steelhead stocked in the Boise River lack an adipose fin - the small fin normally found immediately behind the dorsal fin. Boise River anglers catching a rainbow trout longer than 20 inches without an adipose fin should consider the fish a steelhead. Any steelhead caught by an angler not holding a steelhead permit must immediately be returned to the water.
Steelhead limits on the Boise River are three fish per day, nine in possession, and 20 for the fall season.