Catch-and-keep steelhead harvest has been allowed in Salmon River

A catch-and-keep steelhead harvest has been allowed in the Salmon River, beginning on 15 October.   The limit will be two hatchery fish per day, one less than recent limits.  Apparently increasing numbers of steelhead in the system led Idaho Fish and Game Department to modify the earlier catch-and-release-only regulation.

Salmon River Steelhead
Steelhead caught near Salmon, Idaho.

River temperature yesterday at mid-day was 47 degrees near Salmon.  The river  is clear.  Volume is about a third greater than average for the date, so the river is fast and pushy.  The heavy ice pack last winter followed by a high spring run-off has changed many–most–runs.  Old stand-by holes are dry, and new channels have opened.  There are numerous new gravel bars.  It’s a totally new river this fall–lots of exploring to do.  Cottonwood trees seem to be turning color earlier this year. The peaks above the river are white with snow.  It’s a pretty time to be on the river.

Steelhead usually arrive in the Salmon area in fishable numbers in the third week of October.  Angler activity has been light so far, but usually picks up at this time.  Hopefully fish will arrive in reasonable numbers very soon–though there is uncertainty about  the size of the run.

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