Whether the runs of coho salmon on New York's Salmon River reported over this past weekend turn out to be record-setting may never be known, but it seems abundantly clear that this season's first big push of fish was one for the ages. Beginning this past Friday, reports of massive runs of coho began emerging from the river. These reports continued throughout the day on Saturday. While Sunday seemed to return to the previous norm, wish small pods of fish being spotted intermittently, initial reports this morning indicate the return of some strong runs of coho. Healthy numbers of king salmon and brown trout have also been reported.
Even Salmon River regulars seem to have been amazed by the numbers of fishing moving through the river over the last few days. The official report from the Douglaston Salmon Run described the river as "stupid with fish." Numerous reports surfaced of fisherman being repeatedly run into by migrating fish. One report even suggested that anglers were able to "walk across the river on the backs of coho". While we're not entirely sure that last report is accurate, this much is clear: the first big runs of the season were here, and if you missed it, you're kicking yourself like we are.
There were also a few scattered reports of steelhead in the river.
Unfortunately, these runs of fish -- especially the early ones -- are notoriously intermittent. What is there today is often gone tomorrow. That said, anglers who have been waiting to hear of the season's first strong runs before making the trip up to the Salmon River now be able to make their journey with more confidence. Water levels on the Salmon remain modest. Outflow at the dam is still at 335 cfs. The readings at Pineville are hovering around 400 cfs, with the latest reading at 392 cfs.
If you made the trip this past weekend, let us know how you fared in the comments below.