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Old 02-01-2014, 07:46 AM
RandyJones's Avatar
RandyJones RandyJones is offline
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Join Date: Before Nov. 1999
Location: Monomoy Island, Chatham M.A., Pulaski N.Y.
Posts: 563
Pulaski NY steelhead river fish guide spin fly fish report salmon river

Pulaski NY steelhead river fish guide spin fly fish report salmon river.
On the Salmon River Pulaski NY we continue to see reeeel nice steelhead fishing action. Top to bottom of the Salmon River NY is hold'n some nice fresh and old'r steelhead. Proper Habitat (according to the current water flow and its relationship to the current breaks) Presentation and Rigging become imperative to your success's on these steelhead. This tip comes w/a $ back guarantee - yukyuk.
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Until 11:59 PM today, Sat, 285 CFS - (Please check for current flows, as this could have changed)
A few lower water flow advantages:
1. This will compress and concentrate the steelhead more. Giving you greater opportunity!
2. The water - current breaks - holding pools, will be much easier to read.
3. Most wade anglers prefer this flow. It's easier to fish, wade, access your spots, safer, most anglers know how to fish this lower flow as they are more used to it and its a lil easier to land that Trophy Steelhead of a lifetime with less current.
4. In some places, you'll be able to cross the river to reach some of your favorite fishing holes. (dependent of current water levels) Holding some steelhead that have seen very lil angler pressure of late. When the water was @ 1,800 cfs (couldn't cross the river) I noticed some folks walking over a mile in deep snow to reach some of these spots. I would always joke with them and ask them if they wanted a ride back to there car in my drift boat I'd have to give them prop's for their efforts as normally they would be the ONLY angler fishing a hole that had numerous uneducated, unpressured steelhead in them!
Warning! - Crossing the river @ this time of the year, no matter the flow, is not recommended for your personal safety. (Please see below in last update - Safety related to Wading Video's - could save your life)
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Advantages of fishing after a loooong wicked cold spell:
Wicked cold temps have kept many a steelhead angler away, providing you presently with numerous unpressured steelhead. They are alllll here, just waiting for your perfectly cast (ahemmm) fly, egg sack, jig, worm or bead.
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Warning! - Please be careful standing on any shelf ice while fishing. It could break on you and it COULD be over your head deep. ALWAYS know the depth of water underneath you before standing on it to fish. I know from experince...... but..... THATS.... another story....... yukyuk
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Fish Jokes:
I just got a new fishing rod and reel for my wife……best trade I ever made.
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Give a man a fish and he has food for a day; teach him how to fish and you can get rid of him for the entire weekend.
Zenna Schaffer
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I only fish on days that end in “Y”
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Kids Fish Jokes: (The answers are at the bottom) - See how many you can get without looking. Smarter than a 6th grader? - yukyuk
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1. Who does a fish call when his piano breaks?
2. Why are fish so clever?
3. Why is a fish easy to weigh?
4. Where does a fish keep his money?
5. What do you call a fish without an eye?
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Answers:
1. The piano tuna
2. Because they swim in schools
3. Because it has its own scales
4. In the river bank
5. A fsh
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My interpretation of what this 30 mph windy "white out" Lake Effect Snow looks like outside my office window right now. (Minus thumb holding piece of white paper)
(For all Photo's, Please visit my Profile to Fishing Report link)
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Heard you guys on the East coast got a dusting recently.
Soooo, this morn'n I head's outside to clean the fresh "Lake Effect" snow off both drift boats. I put's on my snow boot's expecting the 5-8 inch's which was forecast. (Jus a dust'n around these here parts I get's 50 feet out into it and realize my boots are no longer visible?
So....... I head's back in and put's on my deeper snow boots. There an old pair of neoprene chest waders I cut off at the knees. I get's another 150 feet out by the boats and realize the snow is up to my thigh's and my deep snow boot's are no longer visible?
So.............. I head's back in a second time and put's on my Winter chest waders, extreme cold Winter parka, arctic mitt's that come up to my elbows and full face fleece mask w/gator. All was well in the world............
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Inspiring Fishing Quotes
Patrick F. McManus
There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm.
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Henry David Thoreau
Everyone should believe in something; I believe I’ll go fishing.
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Sparse Grey Hackle
The trout do not rise in the cemetery, so you better do your fishing while you are still able.
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I'm very lucky, to do what I enjoy and share it with all of you. With the sunrise came hopes for a good day on the river.
(For all Photo's, Please visit my Profile to Fishing Report link)
The adrenaline was over flowing at warp speeeeeeeed. Mark picks up a 10 lb. approx. freshie that had just made it into this spot over the last few days useing a fly rod in 1,800 cfs. I might add, it was his first steelhead ever! What a beauty! Congrats Mark! (Fish released)
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From the Mail Bag:
Randy, Nice web pages. What is an Oregon Cheese Egg Fly?
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You roll a piece of oregon cheese into a ball and place it on a hook and wing it out there. If you don't catch anything on it, then you can always eat the cheese!
Just kidding. It’s a color that a manufacture of glow bug yarn has used to imitate the natural color of Salmon, steelhead etc.. eggs. We tie small egg flies to imitate the naturals. Its like matching the hatch???
When the salmon start laying eggs the steelhead come into the river to specifically eat them, so its one of the best flies in the fall. Go get'm! Randy
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Todays Humorous FISH TAILS
Time Out's:
Randy' Thanks for the great trip! We have been steelhead fisherman for a number of years, and I might add with some success, but on Wednesday we were students. Thanks for not giving us a time out! John and Archie
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Thanks Guys, you don't know how close you both came! (Just kidding of course) Randy
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When was the last time YOU had a Time Out? Your never to old.
Multiple choice:
Time outs are something I "suggest" to some of my clients -
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1. When you act up or miss behave, but are to old to spank.
Laughing out loud or smiling to much is probably the number 1 reason for time out's on my boat. This fishing stuff is way to serious to be having fun! - yukyuk
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2. When you don't listen to me. (After I have "politely and professionally"- "politely, repeatedly and professionally" explained the same thing 50 times over with visual aids and such while you continue to not get it?) - (You know who you are)
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3. Casting into the same trees on the far bank more than once, after I've explained that most of the time you'll catch many more fish if your in the water. Hey Ken, been back to Ken's grove lately? In Ken's case, instead of suggesting to him to take a time out, I simply named the an entire row of tree's after him. In his defense, he did really only have about a 2 foot window to cast underneath those tree branch's. To this day, those tree's always make me smile from ear to ear and chuckle when I pass them by. Boy, if my memory is correct, we hit some nice fish that day, didn't we Ken?!
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4. When you get snagged on the same rock 5 cast's in a row when its 20 below zero and I have to re-tie all those knots.
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5. When you put my $700 reels in the water when it's below freezing, causing everything to freeze up rock solid and become totally non-functional. (One day, 10 seconds after suggesting that we try our best to keep the reels out of the water, yup, you guessed it.) I told that guest that I was booked solid for the next 50 years so I unfortunately would not be able to take him out again. (Just kidding, of course)
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6. When you reach out to chip the ice out of the guides you break the tip off my $500 rod. Making my 2 piece into a 3 piece. (This happens a lot more than you would think. Expensive rods are meant to be flexed fully) Or when reaching out the reel drop's into the water freezing it up rock solid.
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7. When stopping on the trail to re-tie your shoe laces and you set my $500 rod down and break the tip off my rod.
8. While battling a Salmon you put their hand above the cork and explode my $500.00 rod.
9. Instead of letting the fish run, you clamp down on the line, palm the reel or hold the handle which breaks the fish off or breaks my $500 rod.
10. All of the above
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Without all the frozen reels, bad cast's, poor presentations and broken rods I would have never come up with the above "Time Out - Fish Tail" joking post. Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did writing it!
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More "Fish Tails" coming thru out the season, so please stop back.
Countless people have been guided by me and most have gone on to live normal lives.
Be careful out there or YOU could be the next "Fish Tale". (The above fish tales were written and told with a smile and in fun)
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Creeks, Streams, Rivers - Winter into Spring
(Client - Dick Koelling photo credit)
Bright fresh Spring Steelhead
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Typically, the other “best time” to fish for steelhead is just around the corner. End of Feb., March and all of April can be “prime time” for steelhead as there is not only leftover winter steelhead, but also fresh runs of springtime fish. Winter thaws and early spring rains generate runs of steelhead. The water temperature will rise along with their metabolic rate, so they will be much more apt to move for a fly or bait. Normally, the whole river, creeks and streams are alive because you're fishing transitional areas and holding-resting points. When the Salmon River is running high due to run-off, its prime time to walk the many miles of streams and creeks in the area. Ever try to land a 10-pound Steelie in a small creek? It’s not easy, but lots of fun! Once ice-out has happened in the smaller tributaries that run into Lake Ontario north and south of the Salmon River, it’s a great time to explore! These tribs will all have fresh chromers moving in.

Imagine walking up a small stream 20 feet wide, light colored bottom, crystal clear water, through the forest and seeing 10-20 Steelhead, 8-12 pound average in one to four feet of water and not seeing a single other person all day. Sound like Alaska? Nope, believe it or not there are several areas not far from here where this is possible. Many of the creeks and streams feeding into Lake Ontario have steelies in them, but only a few that I’ve found are hidden away in a beautiful pristine environment without any or many other anglers. Normally the Salmon River will flood at least once during the spring. Knowing the optional creeks and streams in the surrounding area to fish during this flooding can sometimes save your trip. Due to possible increasing angler pressure to these areas, (which they can not handle) names will not be printed. Let’s just call them, "Pucker Brush Creek's.”
Bottom line: Any month is a good month, providing the fish are there. Which they always are. Just depends on number's. And no one can forecast that.
Happy Hookin,
Randy Jones
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Anywaaaaays, thats my story for today and Im sticking with it.
No fish were hurt in the writing of this report.
Im a trained professional, so please do not try this at home
Now get back to work before the boss catch's you on here. (Unless of course, you ARE the boss, then stay as long as you want)
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Hello to all the armed forces that read my reports from around the world. Fishing you a safe stay and return home. Thanks for your service!
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Thats it for this week's Rambling's...... I think I covered all the important stuff.
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May all your door knobs smell of "Happy New Year" Steelhead!
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Thank you all for your words of encouragement, kind words and continued support. Ill continue to do my best in sharing what I've learned through experience, experimentation, borrowed ideas and taught techniques.
Stay tuned for more entertainingly informative and mildly educational reports and articles on this never-ending virtual fishing trip with your host Randy "The Yankee Angler" and friends.
I sincerely hope that what little I've been able to share with you will help you along the path to more enjoyable, safe and knowledgeable fishing.
Thanks for stopping in and spending your valuable internet fishing time here I'm flattered as usual!
Hope your all enjoying this great fishing!
The Steelhead fishing of your dreams...... ............ we'll make it reeeeeeeeeeeeeel.
Randy
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I cant guarantee 20'lb. Steelhead, but here are a couple that we found.
This could be you! Ye-Haaaa!
(For all Photo's, Please visit my Profile to Fishing Report link)
A couple of 20lb. Steelhead Bucks from the Salmon River, N.Y. - Ye-haa! (Released for your future fishing pleasure)
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#pulaski #salmonriver #ny #steelhead #fishing #fish #flyfishing #fishingreport #pulaskiny #trout #salmonriverny #fishingsalmonriver #fishingpulaski #fishingpulaskiny #fishingguide #guidesalmonriver
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  #2  
Old 02-01-2014, 07:50 AM
RandyJones's Avatar
RandyJones RandyJones is offline
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Join Date: Before Nov. 1999
Location: Monomoy Island, Chatham M.A., Pulaski N.Y.
Posts: 563
Salmon River Pulaski NY Steelhead Drift Boat Guide Spin Fly Fishing Report

Jan. 25 Salmon River Pulaski NY Steelhead Drift Boat Guide Spin Fly Fishing Report Update:
Fresh steelhead and old'r steelhead abound on the Salmon River NY. Steelhead are top to bottom of the Salmon River. 93% are hold'n in the Winter lyes. The other 7% are in a transitional state.
For your BEST opportunities, fish where most of the fish are compressed and concentrated for this water flow.
I wouldn't leave out hitting some of your favorite and most productive transitional holding spot's either, while we have some steelhead in a transitional stage that have entered the river recently with this higher water flow.
This is what has worked the best for my guest's during the Winter time.
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Expect the water to drop further with no rain, no above freezing temp's. or run-off forecasted in the near future.)
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Pulaski NY 7 Day Weather Forecast
Looks like some snow, wind and cold temp's in the forecast? How unusual - yukyuk
(For all Photo's, Please visit my Profile to Fishing Report link)
(Photo - Hot Chick Fishing!)
Now back to our regularly scheduled programing.............
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Last week Mark fished 2 spots for some fresh chromes. He played w/ a couple older steelhead and found 2 bright fresh steelhead that had just recently arrived due to our last high water period. (As predicted and forecast - such a nice guide)
Played w/ 7-8 total for the day with our biggest landed steelhead weighing in @ 10 lb's. bright Silver Freshie! WOW! What a fight! Before you could blink an eye it was 100 feet into our backing off the fly rod.
Didn't think we would be able to pull it back against the current in 1,800 cfs, but we did. Congrats Mark! (All fish released)
It's funny how these exciting steelhead can make you do funny things? Mark is hooked up to a reeeeel burner. He was sooooo excited he backed up 20 feet into the woods with his rod bent and his reeeel drag singing the fishermans national anthem. He was surrounded by trees and bush's?
I excitedly "politely" asked him to come back to the bank to help in fighting and landing his steelhead. Which we did!
I chucked to myself and remembered my first fish here on the Slam'n Salmon River. It's funny who these fish will do that to you.
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As Usual
Last trip we spent the first hour of the morning learning how to run a proper 100% drift, as usual. No fish were caught during this time period as we had to get thru the ol learning curve first, as usual.
Fish were there, as usual. BUT we wouldn't have a chance in playing with any until we achieved our presentational goals, as usual.
After the first hour, after my last presentational tip, which they both implemented successfully - ALL HELL Broke Lose w/ one after the other!! We hit 8 steelhead and landed 3, in 1 - 2hr. period! WOW!!
Fished a coupl'a other spots, I accidentally hooked one up while checking the drift out. Nothing after that, looked at my watch, time to hit the ramp. My professional goals were all met, my clients goals were all easily met, jus another day @ the office Randy
(P.S. One fish was kept for the dinner table and all others released)
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Unique amazing colorful Steelhead Photo! I've never seen one like that before.
Viewed @ - Im not posting links to my social media pages as these report's are going all over the net and on some website's (where Im NOT a paid advertiser) they dont want them, which I tottally understand and can appreciate!
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Do salmon find their way back home through scents? There's a way to find out!
Marcus Welker is a 4th year PhD student at Dartmouth College studying salmon migration in the Northeast United States and southern Quebec, Canada.
His hypotheses and methods are both surprising and fascinating – check out his interview @ - Im not posting links to my social media pages as these report's are going all over the net and on some website's (where Im NOT a paid advertiser) they dont want them, which I tottally understand and can appreciate!
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Todays Dumb Guide Humor:
Today my guest's laughingly suggested that we should call the sweet spot in the run, Randy's G Spot. Today we reached maximum pleasure by fishing some of the finest, most enjoyable, exciting G spots on the river.
The only trouble we had was finding it. (I know, pretty lame
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Today's Mail Bag:
Hello, Your site has been just about the only thing keeping me sane over the past 9 months. Missed the salmon and early runs of steelhead, but it looks like I'll be back in the states around the middle of Feb, providing things don't go too sour down ---------. My buddy and I, Knowles, are looking to hook up during the end of Feb. until the end, so what have you got open? If you could provide me a schedule it would be greatly appreciated. Later. LAV
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Turns out there are a few military anglers checking my reports from far away! I'm very flattered and hope what I've written has helped you day dream a lil!
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Randy,
I had a lot of 2's yesterday while fishing on the river, 0 for 2 I was, it was 2 cold, 2 wet (baptized myself in 10 degree weather) and 2 hard to walk cause everything was Ice. Still , Beat the hell out of work. May all your flies get bitten!
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Hi John, Thanks for the chuckle, you've made the web site again!! Maybe I should just ask you to write them for me! Congrats! Randy
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(Photo)
An old photo from the archives I ran across. Can't remember where, when, but its a big steelhead from this river. You can tell its big by looking at my left hand and the gap between my thumb and fingers on the tail.
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Winter Spin Tip for the Day:
When spin fishing in the winter time, being able to see your line while on your drift and using a mono that is soft becomes critical. Having these two advantages well increase your catch rate.
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1. Being able to see you line:
Since overcast, dark days are the norm on the river during the Winter time. A clear mono is hard to follow. A brighter mono will help you visually detect the pauses and hesitations of those light biters or snags.
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2. Using a soft mono:
A stiff mono is almost impossible to use during the winter time because it maintains to much memory. Coils, knots and tangles are the result and when it's cold, it's no fun to be untangling knots instead of fishing. It's imperative to find a good soft mono for winter Steelhead fishing with a spin rod.
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The mono I use and am very happy with is Ande Envoy Premium Mono . It is pre tested to assure it won't "over test" its IGFA weight class. It is common knowledge that most folks who are going for a IGFA record on mono use Ande. It is specifically formulated to be softer and has super knot strength.
My guest's and I have enjoyed using the "Envy Green" Ande for many years.
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My guests can see it easily on the worst days. Good for low light. If fishing around other anglers in a popular spot, they can see it too. This cuts down on a lot of tangles created when they cast over your line or when you have a fish on, they can easily see where your fish is at.
This normally happens when they can not see your line or are not paying attention. We were all new once.
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By using a softer mono in the winter time and taking advantage of the visual aspects of a brighter line in the winter time. It will give you many of the advantages needed to consistently increase your productivity. (jus my opionion)
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When your an Author of a popular, unique, content rich website, there is a LOT of white space that needs to be filled
Check out some more fun, entertaining, educational and humorous qaulity content I found for you to enjoy!
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Ultimate Fishing Fail Compilation 2014
Warning for the kids, some foul language. Can't say I blam'm for cus'n - yukyuk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CKt8iCCbN3A#t=84
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The life of Juan. Starring in Taken - Click on the second picture down.
http://klipastau.com/?p=1519
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Safety related to Wading Video's:
Please take 5 minutes out of your busy schedule and review these professionally done videos on everything related to fishing - safely wading the Salmon River NY and surrounding water's. Your life, your friends life or even your children's life could depend on a review of this content.
Some anglers may have been able to survive, had they viewed this. I even learned a few new tricks!
http://dryflyguy.com/wading-safely/
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Added Safe Wading Tips:
1. Turn Around!!! No fish is worth it!!!!!
2. Know your water and structure better than you know the inside of your pocket. This includes knowing exactly what the water level is, forecasted and any possible run-off that might mean a return trip later in the day may not be possible.
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On a lighter note - Pro Tips: How to Become a Fly-Fishing Guide
I laughed my butt off when I read this paragraph.
The one thing that most prospective guides fail to realize is that “guiding” doesn’t mean “fishing.” When you take a paying customer out on the water, you are expected to be an instructor, a cheerleader, and—in some cases—a babysitter. The worst-case scenario requires you to choose the fly, tie all the necessary knots, teach the client how to cast, point to where the fish are, and then stand there while the client proceeds to do everything wrong. In some cases, the client will blame you for his ineptitude, and you’ll just have to smile and nod.
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How to properly release a salmon or steelhead, here on the Salmon River NY:
Are you guilty of improper fish handling?
http://drowningworms.com/how-to-release-a-salmon/
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Winter’s Pale Face - Nice relaxing Winter fishing video to enjoy while your drinking your morn'ns coffee and waking up.
http://www.rodtrip.com/featured_vide...ers-pale-face/
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This video trailer speaks for itself
http://vimeo.com/83659978
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Salmon River fishing museum hosts first in a series of monthly, open houses
http://blog.syracuse.com/outdoors/20...l#incart_river
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This may have been Walt's first attempt at a steelhead music video back in 09? Walt Foster Guides out West in Park City, UT. This video is from here. Turn the volume up! Loved it! Great job Walt!! (Spot Burner - yukyuk)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmvUEmFyMKI
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Todays Humorous FISH TAILS
(Photo)
The funniest moment of the day came when Glenn was doing battle with a King. I jumped to my feet, ran down stream and pounced on it with the net. Scooped it up, proud as a peacock and noticed Glen's rod bent over and he was still tight to his fish. (So HE said) When I asked repeatedly, if he was sure he still had one on, he responded with an excited YES several times over! So the Salmon I had in the net was set free. We walked over to where his line entered the water (where I had netted his fish) and stared dumb founded into 6 inch's of water, void of anything alive. Turns out his line had wrapped around a rock and when I netted his fish the hook pulled loose and imbedded into a rock. So Glenn was battling a rock.
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Randy, If it's one thing you should have learned from our day on the river, it's that you should make sure to point out to your clients that although from a distance a rock and a Salmon may look alike. There are no similarities up close and they should be 100% sure before they tell you to release their netted fish! LOL!!!!! Take Care, Glenn
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(Photo)
Dave with 1 of many Steelhead. Congrats! (All released)
Congrats go out to Dave who fought and released a magnificent, beautiful sucker of 3 lb.! Dave was very proud, as he caught it on one of his own flies!
Dave and I had a fabulous day on the river. Sunny, lots of laughs and fish and more fish. We used the drift boat to drift the middle river. We hit fish in 5 out of 7 spots. Dave was nice enough to invite me to fish with him so we were a combined 2 for 10. The higher water made it a little tuff to land them. We watched in amazement as several of the silver fish jumped and gave us a number of reeeeeeeel smok'n run's. Dave hooked into one fish and as it jumped our jaws came close to hitting the bottom of the boat. It was all of 16 lb's, maybe a lil more. We decided to leave the spot we had just anchored in, to give chase with the boat. I call this a Nantucket Sleigh ride. This would improve the odds of us landing this trophy fish of a lifetime. After a 5 minute tug of war and a boat load of adrenaline running up our spines this honk'a of a fish neared the boat. Dave pulled up on the rod as I went to net it, but it would have none of that and took off like a bullet and the line broke. We anchored, caught are breath and laughed so loud you could probably of heard us a mile off. What a fight, what an incredible, incredible, magnificent fish! "The Salmon River, where memories are made"
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More "Fish Tails" coming thru out the season, so please stop back.
Countless people have been guided by me and most have gone on to live normal lives.
Be careful out there or YOU could be the next "Fish Tale". (The above fish tales were written and told with a smile and in fun)
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Guide Slush Tip- Planning your fishing day around it:
Since it's slushy time again, I'm reposting this from a previous one. If you missed it and are fishing here anytime soon, just might help!
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No it's not the stuff you put in a cone and eat but rather a winter occurrence that causes certain area's of the river to be unfishable.
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Knowing current water -air temp. current water and future water flow level's, tonight's predicted lows with tomorrow's highs will help you decide where to begin your day of fishing.
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Sample:
Water temps. are 34 deg. up top and the flow is 285 cfs. Evening lows are swinging around 5 deg. and daytime highs are around 32 deg. (No heavy snow is forecast) The Key here is the nighttime low. Normally if the low is below 20 deg. you will have slush from Pineville down. If the low is only 20 deg. then you may not have any slush the entire length of the river.
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When slush is present at these air temp's then normally by 10-11 A.M. the lower part of the river will clear out and make fishing possible. If you're ever not sure, than do what I sometimes do and go to the short bridge in town and have a look for yourself, before planning your day. If air temp's do not rise above 20 for the daytime high then you may have slush down river all day.
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If I'm planning to start my fishing at dawn, then I'll start up top. And then later possibly move down river once the slush has had a chance to clear. If certain areas of the river are slushed up and you are the first to arrive after it has cleared than the chances of hooking-up are good. You will be the first angler fishing to fresh fish that have not been disturbed or pressured.
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This same condition occurs on the smaller creeks around the Salmon River in early-late winter. Many an early A.M. trip North has ended with a return trip when slush was not considered. I will always check air temp's the day before I plan fishing the creeks. Often, I will arrive at 10 A.M. and fish while the last balance of slush is clearing and getting first shot at the prime spots. Fish-on!
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Anywaaaaays, thats my story for today and Im sticking with it.
No fish were hurt in the writing of this report.
Im a trained professional, so please do not try this at home
Now get back to work before the boss catch's you on here. (Unless of course, you ARE the boss, then stay as long as you want)
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Hello to all the armed forces that read my reports from around the world. We will save a few fish for you all appon your safe return. Thanks for your service!
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Thats it for this week's Rambling's...... I think I covered all the important stuff.
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May all your door knobs smell of "Happy New Year" Steelhead!
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Thank you all for your words of encouragement, kind words and continued support. Ill continue to do my best in sharing what I've learned through experience, experimentation, borrowed ideas and taught techniques.
Stay tuned for more entertainingly informative and mildly educational reports and articles on this never-ending virtual fishing trip with your host Randy "The Yankee Angler" and friends.
I sincerely hope that what little I've been able to share with you will help you along the path to more enjoyable, safe and knowledgeable fishing.
Thanks for stopping in and spending your valuable internet fishing time here
Hope your all enjoying this great fishing!
The Steelhead fishing of your dreams...... ............ we'll make it reeeeeeeeeeeeeel.
(Photo)
Author Randy Jones
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-#guidepulaski #guidepulaskiny #fishingreportny #fishingreportpulaski #fishingreportsalmonriver #salmon #guide #fly #driftboat #fishingguides #fishpulaski #fishsalmonriver #fishny #fishsteelhead #flyfish #fishreport #fishpulaskiny
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  #3  
Old 02-01-2014, 07:53 AM
RandyJones's Avatar
RandyJones RandyJones is offline
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Join Date: Before Nov. 1999
Location: Monomoy Island, Chatham M.A., Pulaski N.Y.
Posts: 563
Welcome Back to Your Salmon River Pulaski NY Fishing Report - Author Randy Jones

Welcome Back to Your Salmon River Pulaski NY Fishing Report - Author Randy Jones
MORE steelhead have entered and are running the Salmon River Pulaski NY as I type this. Spreading out and settling into all their normal Winter lyes. PLUS all the ones that have already entered and spread out over the entire length, top to bottom of the Salmon River NY over the last several month's. Some Prime Transitional Holding and ALL Prime Winter Holding spots are all with steelhead.
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Current forecasted water flow until Sat - 1,800 cfs.With colder air temp's and no rain or run-off in the near future. We will - should see the water level start to drop shortly.
FYI - As always, please remember to check the water line forecast, actual flow @ Pineville and weather before making the trip up. We've had a couple of high water periods and some wicked weather this season.
Also, what is forecast for water levels is not always 100% accurate! So please always use caution.
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Starting shortly, the weather man is forecasting much coooooolder air temp's for around here into next month.
Have heard and seen lately that they had closed down Int. 81 due to lake effect snow and Rt. 3 by Sandy Creek due to massive ice jam's. Saw on the news last night (Wed.) where some incredible ice flows had come over the river bank and destroyed numerous mobile homes, camp's and storage sheds. Now there concerned about fresh water and possible damage to well's. Those folks up that'a way have had a tuff Winter! Ton's of snow! The video's on the news reminds me of what it usually looks like around here.
Hopefully, mother nature will re-supply us with a much larger snow base with a lot of water content. We lost a lot of it in our last 2 thaws and rainy periods. This well help with our Spring Steelhead river flows.
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Guest Guided Fishing Report:
Randy, can you reeeeelly fish in 1,800 cfs plus run off useing a fly rod? This is a pretty normal Q. My guest's concerns were unwarranted, we did and were very successful in doing so. My guest's played with approx. 15 steelhead over the course of our day. I even accidentally (yukyuk) hooked up 4 steelhead while demonstrating proper presentation to my clients. I "jokingly" told them I was the Tiger Woods of steelhead fishing - yukyuk. Fish on and then, eventually off, was a pretty normal phrase for the day among ourselves and other anglers. Whenever your fishing with a higher water flow you'll also have more current. Making it tuffer to land them. We were successful in landing some, came reeeel close on others. All in all, another successful steelhead fishing day of many with my guest's!
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Want to see the Salmon River NY in 1,800 cfs during the Winter and what snow we have left after the thaw? Check out this short funny video my guest's made as we floated down the Salmon River Pulaski NY off the drift boat the other day.
You might just recognize the guy - guide rowing the drift boat and doing some Impromptu advertising - The Steelhead fishing of your dreams...... ............ we'll make it reeeeeeeeeeeeeel.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=huyYx...ature=youtu.be
Family comments after I sent them the video link:
People pay you for that? Looks like too much fun! Mike Jones
OK, Tiger! Some good footage! Beth
That's the same river you took us on and we thought we recognized the scenery of it. Send more video's, Love, Mom
Cool video. So different in the winter. I can’t imagine why anyone would want to go when it’s so cold out. I agree with Mom – send more videos! Susan
Love it Rand! I've been laughing my butt off. Thanks. They seem like fun people. Mary
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Thanks again guys! I had a blast! Thanks for the video! Can't wait to do it allllll over again soon.
Best Fish's,
Randy
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On another recent guided trip my 2 guest's were Paul and John. The water was 1,800 cfs plus run off and there preference was to use fly rods.
Hmmm, I wanted to place them on the bank so they could spread out a lil (sometimes its a lil tight fishing from the boat) and keep there feet warmer rather then freezing them in the cold river water. (I had noticed in the dark they were useing pull over lace up boots with breathable waders.) I also wanted to obviously place them in an area that had a large concentration of compressed steelhead in 1,800 cfs. I also had to find a location where we would have this type of habitat where the steelhead would be close to the bank. It's a lil tuff to throw the fly rod 100 feet or more And lastly, in this water flow a spot where the current wasn't RIP'N!
Simple enouph! - yukyuk
As we floated down the Salmon River in the drift boat in the dark, came hopes for a good steelhead day on the river.
I pulled the drift boat over to the bank in the dark in a good Winter Lye that full filled my professional goals for today. Few bundled up anglers out early that beat me to the spot. I introduced myself and politely asked them where they were fishing (first person on the spot gets it I asked if they would mind if I fished 1 guy from the boat and one guy below on the bank, out of their way. They said SURE! I then offered my portable propane heater to them and also my loooong handled net to help them in landing their fish in this higher flow. We chatted a lil about the current fishing, water levels and exchanged pleasantries.
I thanked them for there hospitality!
My 2 guest's had to "happily" work for all the fish we found. Scattered a lil, concentrated a little, picked away at them. They played with approx. 7-8 steelhead w/ one coming reeeel close to the net before breaking off. No fish were landed but we sure had fun try'n! The anglers above us landed a beauty of approx. 8 lb. female steelhead. (Released) I congratulated the angler on his success. He was ginning from ear to ear and giddy with the excitement of it all!
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Hears a "clean" joke my sister just sent me:
Men's Minds Just Work Differently
A caring husband sees his wife is busy in the kitchen and offers to help.
(For all Photo's, Please visit my Profile to Fishing Report link)
He: “My dear, what can I do to help you?”
She: “Take this bag of potatoes, peel half of them, and put them in the big pot to cook.”
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This weeks Mail Bag Q's with my reply:
Hi Randy, two of us from Ontario are looking at coming down on Jan 17th. Wondering if you have a winter rate and might be available. Also, curious to know if 2000cfs is good.... from shore, I didn't like it much, but then I don't know that river like you guys do.
thanks, Paul
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Good morn'n, Im sorry, I just booked it.
Most anglers don't like this flow, to me its just the "same ol same hole" scenario. Tuffer to land'm and following almost out of the question.
Also, less "safe"spots and less "productive" spots available to the shore angler = less opportunity. (Just my opionion) Can't cross the river in this flow We do have numerous "high water spots" that are easily accessible - safe - and w/ fish for the shore angler to choose from.

Yes, my Winter rate is offered to you after I observe how you fish. You will be Winter rated on a scale from O to 10. yukyuk
On a funny note, I never understood why during the coldest - tuffest time of the year to be a guide, guides would offer a discount? I'm happily very successful in my business and guess that's why some guides do offer a discount during the Winter?
Good luck and have fun! Randy
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Randy, When is the best time to come over and fish for steelhead? Joe
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Hey Joe,
Short Answer:
The steelhead are always around during our 6-7 month season. There is no best or better time. Only angler or guide preferences, which do vary for different reason's, in my opionion . Randy
Looooong answer:
Here are MY favorite guiding you times to fish for steelhead and why, other anglers might disagree or have a "best time" for steelhead due to there personal preferences.
My favorite time to fish for them is when YOU will have greatest opportunity. That's in the Winter, less drift boat's, less angler pressure allowing you more opportunity.
Not on a weekend, holiday or around either, so mid-week (T. W or Thursday) during the Winter is best during a warm spell. No high winds (frost bite) or dangerous driving conditions for you to get here.
Then I like April, warmer and sight fishing is an optional treat, during the same mid-week scenario.
Then I like Nov. the least. Plenty of steelhead around, BUT its also when we have the most anglers fishing due to warmer temp's and they fight the hardest then. More visually stimulating due to there acrobatic, speeding bullet runs and fight's. Due to increased angler pressure = less opportunity for you.
So again, no "best time for steelhead". Just personal preference. They are always here.
Hope this helps a lil, Randy
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Safe Fish Handling Tip: (Jus my opionion)
Please remember to hold your breath. Yup, a fish should not be held out of the water longer than you can hold your breath if releasing it. Otherwise your injuring it and slowly killing it, no matter the species, no matter where in the world you are and also, no matter the water or air temperature.
How long can YOU hold your breath under water, especially after you have just ran a mile and are out of breath? Same for the fish out of the water.
Can you accidentally kill or injure a fish when taking its picture even though it swims off strongly? Sure you can. If you hold it out of the water for to long and also if the air temperature is in the teens or below the gills can freeze. Many times during the Winter during extreme cold temperatures I'll kindly ask my guest's to not take the fish out of the net - water, for a picture if it is to be released. No one has ever had a problem with that once they are told the reason why and are very appreciative. Like all of us, if you've never been told this, who would know.
By practicing these safe fish handling techniques (plus more) you will be helping this fishery (which we all share) to maintain its excellence for all. Thank you!
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I found some more fun stuff to share with you all on the net recently, great info, video's and music! ( jus try'n to fill more of this DARN white space for ya all to enjoy- yukyuk!)
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Tom Rosenbauer (respected angler, writer, book author plus more incredible credits that would fill half of this page) is an'ol friend and mentor who does a pod cast for Orvis - If you scroll half way on the index bar, this is where he starts talking about drift fishing with a fly rod and swinging flies, useing beads, etc... salmon and steelhead. It pertains greatly to the Salmon River NY. Keep up the good work Tom! Enjoy!
http://www.orvis.com/news/fly-fishin...ishing+Blog%29
You all may want to sign up for his pod cast's.
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Comment and my reply taken from Tom's pod cast site, linked above.
Mark comments - Thanks for the great podcast as usual Tom. Is it common in the Great Lakes tribs for anyone to use a large steelhead or salmon dry like a Bomber or Steelhead Bee as an indicator with an egg or nymph below it in low water? Kinda like a hopper/dropper but for Steelhead? If I had to nymph fish it would be more palatable to do so with a fly on top which I tied rather than a thingamabobber, etc…
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Reply - Randy Jones
I’m not Tom, but I’m sure he would agree and trust my judgment.
Sure, but you can only fish 1 hook point on the Salmon River NY and surrounding Trib’s to Lake Ontario. No tandems. (Please check the reg. book for all this including weight (depends where your fish’n) and hook gaps, etc….)
Using a bomber is an exciting way to fish, skated across the surface. But, if you only have 1 fish ALL day take a swipe at it, and miss it, you’ve had a good day.
Best Fish’s, Salmon River NY Guide – Randy Jones
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Cool video and music about steelhead fishing out West in the Winter. I've probably watched it 10 times since I found it. Superb job Travis! Loved it!! Turn your volume UP!!!
http://vimeo.com/83369164
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Not Salmon River related, but found it funny on a google feed for "most popular" Reminded me of the ol'Benny Hill TV show - you youngsters may need to google his name - yukyuk
https://plus.google.com/110382386209...ts/j3SEL4dZVm3
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Todays Humorous FISH TAILS:
I made the mistake one day of calling my guest's landed Brown Trout "a nice small brown". My client's eyes got real big, he had a very surprised look on his face as his jaw dropped. What do you mean Randy! This is the BIGGEST Brown trout I have ever caught in my entire life! I apologized and said what a BIG beautiful Brown trout it is. I guess on this river after awhile, a 3 to 6 lb. fish looks on the smaller side after you get sooooo used to seeing the average fish weight in at 10 to 20 lb's. I'll never make that mistake again. Ever heard of open mouth and insert foot?
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While discussing what to do with the rod when I go to net a Big King Salmon in the fast and deep rapids. I instructed my client to always drop the rod tip. Creating just enouph slack so as not to pull the fish away from me, and out of the net.
Soon they're after, as I was ready to net his next BIG King Salmon of many. I yelled (Politely), drop your rod. As I looked on in disbelief (trying not to laugh) my client opened his rod hand and dropped my rod into the rapid filled river?????? Needless to say, the fish was lost but brand new Orvis rod ($500) and brand new ($700) orvis reel was recovered (all scratched up) and a good laugh was had by all!
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More "Fish Tails" coming thru out the season, so please stop back.
Countless people have been guided by me and most have gone on to live normal lives.
Be careful out there or YOU could be the next "Fish Tale". (The above fish tales were written and told with a smile and in fun)
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Drift Fishing w/ Fly or Spin Rods Part 2:
From the Archives
Author Randy Jones
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There are numerous ways to present a fly/bait with a fly/spin/center pin rod for steelies. This is one of the more popular methods used in the Great Lakes region. Some well known fishing authors have written about it. My friend Tom Rosenbauer mentions it in his Orvis fly fishing technique book.
Deep nymphing, dead drifting, drift fishing, high sticking, chuck and duck. These are all terms I've heard, used to describe the same method. Anytime you can make it easier for any species of fish to feed anywhere in the world you will increase the odds of hooking up.
That's why this presentation technique is so popular, especially during the winter months. It gets your fly/bait/etc.. into the strike zone faster and keep's it there longer than almost any other presentational technique - tool. (Useing floats is another very productive method)
It works in every condition you will ever find on a river.
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Correct speed of drift:
Imitating an egg-nymph dead drifting along the bottom at the same rate of speed as the bottom water column is imperative to successfully hooking up. This is achieved by looking where you're mono butt section enters the water. (Your fly line (running line) should NOT be in the water for many reason's) It should be moving slightly slower than the surface current. This matches the bottom current speed close enough. Making your offering look real enough to even the Smartest fish.
Jim Rusher once told me that in the wintertime it is sometimes advantageous to slow your drift down even further. This allows the lethargic fish time to move slightly for what it thinks is an easy meal.
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Correct depth of drift:
When I first cast into a new piece of water my first question is how deep. This determination is achieved by raising or lowering rod tip until light ticking of weight on bottom rocks is felt. The next step for me is to look at the distance between the surface of the water and end of fly line.
(I prefer to run a 10 ft. butt section of 10-12lb. test straight mono for steelhead, so fly line never touches the water on the drift. Fly lines float and are larger in diameter than mono, causing it to have many negative effect's when fishing in this manner if its in the water.)
By this distance, between fly line and water I know exactly where it should be on each successive cast. Allowing me to set up immediately for each additional cast to achieve the perfect drift. The end of the fly line act's like an indicator. Most angler's do not prepare their drift in advance, before they reach the 12 O'clock position. (This is where I start every drift and where I can control it) By using the end of the fly line as an indicator it is easy to prep your drift in advance of the 12 O'clock position. Allowing you to run the most productive drift possible. The next question I ask myself is am I weighted correctly?
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Weight:
Your goal is to match the bottom current flow. Most anglers use to much weight and slogggg along the bottom, which has many negative effects. You simply want to lightly tick occasionally.
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Visual and non-visual characteristics of line:
In my opinion, when drift fishing correctly the line between tip of rod and weight should be a straight line. If you try to dead drift with a bow in your line, you not only create additional drag which speeds up your drift making your fly look unnatural but also makes for a lot of unnecessary snags on bottom. (Your rod tip should be as high as you can get it (for many reasons) and the fly line should be totally out of the water) With out a straight line (slack) your weight is simply slogging along the bottom looking for the quickest and easiest rock to call home for good. A lot of the time if you have slack in your line you will not feel the ticking sensation due to the vibrations not being transferred up through the line. There are about 20 other negative things that happen when you have a bow or slack in your line. Remember; with line straight from tip of rod to weight you will be lightly tapping the tops of the rocks. Cutting down on drag, giving it a more natural drift by imitating the correct bottom speed, feeling those pauses and hesitations better, detecting the take better and getting hung-up on bottom less.
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Angle of rod tip to line:
To achieve a maximum dead drift and cut down on snags the rod tip should be directly over the line. If rod tip is in front of line then you will be prematurely initializing the swing and probably ending your drift prematurely. Also, if weight runs into structure, you will be pulling it into it and creating a worse snag than if rod tip was over line and twitched directly up and over obstruction on pauses and hesitations.
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The lesson for today was to hold the rod tip as high as possible to cut down on the amount of line entering into the water. (High sticking) Every time the rod tip was held low several negative things happened.
1. First and most importantly no fish were caught.
2. The fly would swing through the hole, instead of dead drifting through it. There by making our tasty morsel look more like a speeding bullet than something that was naturally moving along the bottom at the correct speed that was edible.
3. The weight would not bring our fly into the strike zone, due to the current bowing the line and keeping it all off bottom.
4. A low rod tip puts more line into the water creating a sub-surface bow which has many negative effect's. Basically, not allowing you to achieve your desired and most productive dead drift.
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The above article has some exceptions to it. There are even more advanced techniques to add to the above article that will further your success rate. I guess I'll save those for my guest's.
Happy Hook'n:
Randy Jones
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If the water stays up and you are coming up this week to fish, bring your water wings, sleep in and bring a shovel. Snow's in the forecast everyday, how unusual.
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Hello to all the armed forces that read my reports from around the world. We will save a few fish for you all appon your safe return. Thanks for your service!
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Thats it for this week's Rambling's...... I think I covered all the important stuff.
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May all your door knobs smell of "Happy New Year" Steelhead!
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Thank you all for your words of encouragement, kind words and continued support. Ill continue to do my best in sharing what I've learned through experience, experimentation, borrowed ideas and taught techniques.
Stay tuned for more entertainingly informative and mildly educational reports and articles on this never-ending virtual fishing trip with your host Randy "The Yankee Angler" and friends.
I sincerely hope that what little I've been able to share with you will help you along the path to more enjoyable, safe and knowledgeable fishing.
Thanks for stopping in and spending your valuable internet fishing time here
Hope your all enjoying this great fishing!
The Steelhead fishing of your dreams...... ............ we'll make it reeeeeeeeeeeeeel.
Author Randy Jones
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#fishsalmonriverny #fishpulaski #fishpulaskiny #fishguide #fishguidesalmonriver #fishguidepulaski #fishguidepulaskiny #fishreportny #fishreportpulaski #fishreportsalmonriver #fishsalmon #fishdriftboat #fishguides
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Old 02-01-2014, 07:56 AM
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RandyJones RandyJones is offline
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Join Date: Before Nov. 1999
Location: Monomoy Island, Chatham M.A., Pulaski N.Y.
Posts: 563
Salmon River Pulaski NY Fishing Report

Welcome Back to Your Salmon River Pulaski NY Fishing Report
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Steelhead fishing on the Salmon River Pulaski NY has been REEEL GOOD all season for my guest's and others. Steelhead are top to bottom of the Salmon River NY. Bright fresh Steelhead transitioning up the Salmon River in Pulaski NY were noticed off the drift boat last week.
As usual, steelhead anglers are finding the fishing either slow, tuff, challenging, ok, not bad, good, pretty good to AMAZING, as usual! We have old'r and fresher steelhead from the top to the bottom of the Salmon River.
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Last guide trip Ed and Jeff enjoyed some great steelhead fishing action. We pretty much fished in solitude, (please see below Winter Solitude article) except for a bunch of steelhead that kept us company. We played with approx. 8-9 steelhead thru out the day.
This was there first time fishing here for steelhead on the Salmon River NY. I think they'll be back.
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On 1/13 - 1,800 cfs
We have some more above average temps and rain in the forecast so I wouldn't be surprised if we have this flow for awhile longer? Where's that crystal ball of mine?
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I wanted a spot that had a presence of steelhead, was easy to fish, safe and would normally have no other anglers present. This was their first time fishing the Salmon River.
I put Jeff in a spot where their weren't any trees or bush's on the fair bank that he might accidentally cast into. Wouldn't you know it, he found every tree and bush to cast into, that I didn't even know existed? (I have a few more gray hairs after that trip)
I eventually, humorously, had to give him a "Time Out".
Lot's of steelhead were played with and a few nice ones coming to net. Pictures taken, all fish released for your future fishing pleasure. Another rewarding day of many.
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Complementary Guide Spinning Rod Tip for Today:
Use athletic tape to stop cold hands on spinning reel - rods. A lil guide trick I use during the Winter time is to wrap athletic tape around the cold metal reel seat on my spinning rods. Some anglers actually take a hand warmer and wrap it under this athletic tape for warmer hands during the Winter's Steelhead fishing.
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Todays Humorous FISH TAILS
(Photo)
John told me a funny story about his wife and a 15 lb. Steelhead in April. It takes place in an area I had guided them the day before that was loaded with fish and no anglers. Turns out that as John rushed for the net, he ripped a big hole in his waders and cold water rushed in. When he dove for the fish with the net, he fell in. When he tried to net the fish for the third time, he smashed his watch to pieces on a rock. Fish was netted, picture was taken and fish was released. I'm sure Johns wife was very appreciative of his efforts.
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Monster Brown:
At one point during the day Bill said, Hey Randy, come here quick. I see a BIG Brown Trout. I walked over and peered into the crystal clear water and looked at what Bill was excitedly pointing at. Look at the size of that one, Bill commented. I said, Hmmmm, Bill I dont see it. Right there, right off the tip of my rod, dont you see it? It's a monster Brown, could be a new world record! As Bill was pointing at it with his rod I noticed his hands were trembling with the excitement at the possibility of bragging rights to his fishing buddies for years to come if he was able to catch it.

I said, O, now I see it, yes, that is one of the largest Browns I have ever seen! That could be a real nice wall hanger. Bragging rights for years. Boy, wont your fishing buddies be jealous!

Both Chris and I started to snicker because what Bill was pointing at was a very dead and very severely decaying King Salmon just laying happily on the bottom of the pool. We both egged him on and suggested he make a cast for it, but shortly there after we explained to him what he was really seeing. His face turned a little red and we all laughed. Of course we were laughing with him and not at him. How long you been fishing this river Bill? Had your eye's checked lately Bill? - yukyuk
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Countless people have been guided by me and most have gone on to live normal lives.
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Be careful out there or YOU could be the next "Fish Tale". (The above fish tales were written and told with a smile and in fun)
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This weeks Mail Bag:
Randy, Good morning, just another steelhead enthusiast from New Jersey who enjoys reading your articles. My brothers and I fished the Salmon River last week and between the three of us we landed 28 Steelhead and proud to say released 28 Steelhead Trout. We consider ourselves avid fishermen with Steelhead fishing being our favorite type of fishing. Given your expertise, can you please take a look at the enclosed photos and let me know what you feel the fish may weigh? Thanking you in advance, Robert
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((Pictures were unfortunately not posted here for all of you to enjoy. No time to photo-edit as the photographer displayed this popular location plainly in photo. Dont want to advertise YOUR favorite spot on here.)) Such a nice guy-guide!
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Hey Rob, Congrat's!! I'd guess both over 12 lb's. That female is a fatty! You know the ol'guide say'n, you lie and Ill swear to it!! Best Fish's, Randy
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Randy, Thanks for the quick reply. We were given something special last weekend. Saturday, I landed 3 and must have had a dozen other hook ups. The difference was Sunday when I landed 10 and still had another 10 or so hook ups. I can’t put into words the zone I was in and the euphoria that filled by body.
I’m still trying to put things into perspective. I’m thinking between the warm weather, changing of the barometric pressure and the fact that the Steelhead are still making there way into the river made for an unforgettable weekend. I’ve been fishing the Salmon River for 25 years now and between the Steelhead, Salmon, Pike and Smallmouth, this was by far the absolute best. I’m heading up again this weekend for another go. Take care, Robert
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Winter Solitude
(Photo)
After what seems like a holiday marathon for some, family gatherings, work parties, dinner after dinner, and more food, you feel like you run right into a brick wall. January in northern Michigan truly slows the pace of life almost to a screeching halt with winter settling in, showing its cold grasp on the beautiful landscape we live in. Some outdoor enthusiasts love this time of the year and take to the ski hills, snowmobile trails, and frozen lakes and ponds. January in Michigan can also offer what a select few are constantly in search for, a place of solitude.
Solitude can be defined as a state of seclusion or isolation, or lack of contact with people. Fly fishing Northern Michigan’s streams in January provides such a place for those that want to unwind, relax, think, and even reflect on the time that has passed and look at the year ahead. The silence of winter can almost be deafening with its soft white blanket and leafless trees. The swoosh of your crisp waders followed with the exaggerated crunch of the snow beneath every step of the trail, you enter into a world few have experienced. As you slide in off the snowy bank you are greeted with the bright shimmer of light bouncing of the riffles. You find yourself waist deep at your favorite winter pool knowing that it is just you and the fish at your feet. The frosty air tickles your nose as you strip line from the reel preparing for your first cast. As your flies enter the water searching for steelhead, you find yourself transported almost to a different world, a world of solitude.
Everybody needs a little solitude in their lives. Whether that place is on an ice covered pond in the middle of nowhere, cozied up at home with a good book, or even standing in a busy shopping mall, solitude gives a person that mental break from their everyday grind. Having personally fished thousands of days and being blessed with a fish’s presence through many of them, I find myself asking what it is that draws me to such a place, day after day, season after season. It was Henry David Thoreau that said it best, “Many go fishing without knowing it is fish they are after.” Many days this rings true to any angler whether they fish once a year or 7 days a week. Some go fishing just to get away from the hustle and bustle of their everyday lives. There are others, modern day vagabonds more on their own accord, in search of the rivers to escape from anybody and everybody. For the rest including myself, fishing is more of a passion of necessity. All have a common bond that they share in that they are all in search of solitude. Catching fish, of course, never hurt anyone either and puts the icing on the cake on an afternoon of fishing.
Fly fishing Michigan’s rivers in the still of winter can provide that much needed get away as old man winter gets settled in. Granted with the normally cold temperatures, there are only a few windows of opportunity to get out and be able to fish, but steelhead and brown trout fishing can still be good even in the dead of winter. The key to success usually has little to do with flies and tippet size, but more about timing. There is always a fish feeding somewhere at some time, but more often than not, there are a few more when the water temperatures warm. It usually does not take much, just a degree or two can be enough. Sunny or mild days when temperatures reach the freezing mark or better usually provide the needed bump in water temperatures and make for a fun afternoon of fishing. Fish tend to be more grouped up this time of the year too, making them more accessible in fewer places. Fishing the deeper, slower pools where most of the trout and steelhead hang out will give you a better chance as well. Patience and perseverance can go a long way as well to help with a successful day. Fish can be sluggish depending on conditions requiring a few more casts than you may usually try. Swinging spey patterns or fishing with egg patterns or nymphs under an indicator will strike interest from your targeted quarry.
Fishing doesn’t have to be the only thing to enjoy on a sunny winter’s day. The river provides an excellent place for photography as well. There is nothing like the clear day after a freshly fallen snow. Snow covered trees, wildlife, and the shadows of the low sitting sun all make for good picture taking. The river itself is a thing of beauty as it meanders its way through the winter landscape. The banks sometimes extended with a shelf of layered ice entrancing the camera’s lens into an icy kaleidoscope. The snowy backdrop makes for some great and colorful fish pictures as well.
So the next time you think about staying inside with your hot cocoa for yet another day this January, grab some clothes, your camera, and fishing gear and head out in search of a little solitude for yourself.
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From the Archives - Drift Fishing w/ Fly or Spin Rods Part 1
Author: Randy Jones
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There are numerous ways to present a fly/bait with a fly/spin rod for steelies. This is one of the more popular methods used in the Great Lakes region. Some well known fishing authors have written about it. My friend Tom Rosenbauer mentions it in his Orvis fly fishing technique book.
Deep nymphing, dead drifting, drift fishing, high sticking, chuck and duck. These are all terms I've heard, used to describe the same method. Anytime you can make it easier for any species of fish to feed anywhere in the world you will increase the odds of hooking up. That's why this presentation technique is so popular, especially during the winter months. It gets your fly/bait/etc.. into the strike zone faster and keep's it there longer than almost any other presentational technique - tool. (Useing floats is another very productive method) It works in every condition you will ever find on a river. (High-low water, cold-warm water, any species, clear-off color water, fast-slow moving water, close in far out, no room for a back cast, crowded conditions, etc…)
You only want to lightly tap your weight on top of the rocks (3 light ticks is sufficient). Giving your rod tip a slight 1-2 in. twitch when feeling a slight pause, stop or hesitation. Many times the fish do not slam your egg or fly but instead mouth it before spitting it out. This feel's like a pause or hesitation while you are on your drift. In my opinion, it is critical to concentrate on detecting the pause or hesitation that happens when a fish lightly pick's up your bait or fly. Pre-setting the hook immediately before it has a chance to spit it is critical while you are checking to see if it is a rock or fish. If you slightly twitch the tip of the rod (1-2 inch's) on the pause, then you are pre-setting correctly. If it's a rock, you have just gotten over it, and kept your fly/bait on the bottom. If you fully set, then a lot of the time you have moved you weight and fly/bait so far of the bottom, that your drift is over. If its a fish (or snag) then your line will not move and stop which means you should immediately fully set the hook. I pre-set the hook with a twitch, then set, if line remains still. This happens in a blink of an eye.
The first lesson I was ever taught when fishing for steelhead or salmon using this technique is if you pre- set on the pause or hesitation, and pull up a leaf, then you are detecting the slight pause or hesitation correctly. If you wait every time for your line to stop before you set, then you are missing fish. I always tell my clients- when in doubt, pre-set the hook, and if the line doesn't move, PLEASE (politely) set it!
Not a day goes by when you can watch other anglers fishing and see there line pause with no reaction by them. Or watch the line stop dead for 3-4 seconds with no reaction. The reaction to the take has to be immediate or fly/bait can be spit out. Many fish are lost and simply never hooked up because many, many anglers are all waiting for that BIG BANG of Fish On!
A blind man can easily detect the take when the fish slams it, but it's the 10% of anglers that catch 90% of the fish that are concentrating mostly on the pauses and hesitations, in my opinion.
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Here are several ways to help you detect subtle takes. (Pauses and hesitations)
1. Watching the line in the water as it moves down stream on the drift. You will normally always see it, before you feel it.
2. Feeling with your rod hand on cork.
3. Lightly touching your rod hand index finger to line. This will only work proficiently if the line is coming straight off the reel to your first rod guide. If your in the habit of making those lil trout loops (what I call them) after you've cast, then it does not work.
4. Holding the line in your other hand. The line should be held in your fingertips for greatest sensitivity.
5. There are some seasoned Steelhead angler's who don't watch their line in the water on the drift. Instead they look at their rod tip through the entire drift. Letting the slight movement of the tip tell them what is going on underneath the surface.
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Proper Weighting:
I sometimes change my weight 2-3 times without moving from the same spot. I work the water close, then farther out. Weighting is critical to helping you detect the takes. The key is to lightly tap the bottom, not dredge the bottom. Too much weight and detecting subtle takes is impossible. Most anglers use to much weight.
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This technique also works in your local streams and river's for trout during high water conditions. Also in the deeper, faster sections were traditional fly lines will not allow you to get down to the bigger fish.
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Basically, telling the difference between tapping a rock and a subtle take is one of the most difficult skills to acquire, when fishing in this manner. Most anglers are all waiting for the big BANG. Thereby missing 50% of actual takes. If you think about it, doesn't a pause or hesitation always precede a complete stop? When a fish takes and spits your fly, bait it can happen in a split second. By concentrating on your line movement, correct weighting, depth of drift, contact with the bottom, pauses and the hesitations. You will be on your way too becoming a part of the 10% that catch's 90% of the fish.
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Besides all the other pieces of the puzzle we have covered and will cover, hopefully these tips will help you all to be more in tune with your drift fishing.
Happy hook'n,
Randy Jones
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Would you believe my client skipped out on paying me for todays guided trip? The nerve of some people!
I took this photo of him with a nice steelhead, turned around for a second, looked back, and he was gone!
(Photo - Hot chick in a bikini)
Ooooppsss! Wrong picture!
(Photo)
I wonder what hap'n'd to him?
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The above and a hole lot more coming to your virtual fishing computer screen this season, complements of Salmon River NY Guide - Randy Jones, so please stop back
If anyone has comments good or bad, questions or suggestions on future posts or what you want to see on this site, please let me know!
I hope you've enjoyed this weeks update, save me a rock.
(Photo)
Author Randy Jones
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