1 October 2013–Muddy water

Recent rains have increased river levels dramatically with dirty water a result. Yesterday the river temperature near Salmon was 48 degrees, with the river too off-color to fish. It is still too early for best steelhead fishing in the Salmon area anyway, and hopefully the river will clear by the time fish arrive in a couple of weeks. Last week we were on the Lower Salmon for a five-day trip. This rainy period had just started, but the river was already murky. River temperature there was 57 degrees, so between cool water and dirty water, the expected smallmouth bass fishing wasn’t very good. A few steelhead were being caught below the Grand Ronde in the Snake River, but not many fishermen–it is still a little early.
This rain produced very dramatic rise in river levels. The Lower Salmon was flowing about 3300 cfs when we started our trip on the 25th; today it is about 14,000 and still rising. The Middle Fork yesterday peaked about mid-day and is falling-but it reached over 4 feet on the guage. Volume of flow was about five times the previous highest record per date.

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