Did you ever stop to think about the journey fish make to keep their populations viable? Idaho's ocean-going salmon and steelhead journey 1,000's of miles, negotiate thousands of feet in elevation change and run a gauntlet of swimming, flying, fishing predators to return to Idaho - where they spawn and the cycle repeats. This is important not only for fish populations to survive, but it's also important on a broader scale because fish returning to Idaho headwater streams bring with them ocean nutrients which are important to Idaho ecosystems.
Even our local resident fish journey many miles and contribute to other wildlife and plant communities in ways we are only beginning to understand.
River conditions on the upper Salmon River changed considerably over the past week. River flows through Salmon, ID doubled and visibility was greatly reduced. This lead to steelhead anglers primarily focusing in on areas just downstream of the Pahsimeroi and Sawtooth Hatcheries. No angler interviews were obtained downstream of Salmon in location codes 15 or 16. Interviewed anglers in location code 17, downstream of the Pahsimeroi River, averaged 8 hours per steelhead caught and 19 hours per steelhead kept. Upstream of the Pahsimeroi River in location code 18, interviewed anglers did not report catching a steelhead. The most heavily fished area over the week was upstream of the East Fork in location code 19. Interviewed anglers in location code 19 averaged 6 hours per steelhead caught and 14 hours per steelhead kept. Check Harvest Report for more details.
Currently the Salmon River is flowing at 3,020 cfs through the town of Salmon, ID which is 213% of average for today’s date. Water conditions are muddy downstream of Stanley, ID, and water temperatures are in the mid to upper 40s.
As of April 8th, 3,858 adult hatchery steelhead have returned to the Pahsimeroi Hatchery, and as of April 7th, 1,974 adult hatchery steelhead have returned to the Sawtooth Hatchery. Additionally, the Pahsimeroi Hatchery planted 125 adult hatchery steelhead into Blue Mountain Pond in Challis, ID on Thursday, April 7th. - Brent Beller, Salmon Region Fisheries Technician