Niagara Gazette — 1. Lake Ontario and tributaries
The Lake Ontario Counties Trout and Salmon Derby kicked off on Friday, offering competitive anglers 10 days of action for salmon and trout, as well as walleye – now that the season opens today. Timing should be perfect for the lake action to be taking off. In the St. Catharines King of the Lake tournament last weekend, the winner produced eight king salmon over two days to take the top prize. Lake trout are turning on at the Niagara Bar off the mouth of the river and conditions are near perfect from the green buoy marker out for more than a mile.
Along the shorelines at Wilson and Olcott, brown trout and coho salmon lead the way for anglers inside of 40 foot depths, but lake trout are also available along with the occasional king salmon out to 60 feet according to Wes Walker at The Slippery Sinker.
Most of the king fishing is taking place west of Wilson. Wilson Harbor is holding a mix of perch, pike and panfish (Pike opens on Saturday), and off the piers you can cast for browns or cohos in either Wilson or Olcott. Spoons, spinners, worms or minnows will all catch fish. Eighteenmile Creek is still holding fish but now it’s a mix of warm and cold water species.
The Lake Ontario Trout and Salmon Association will be holding its next meeting May 9 at Cornell Cooperative Extension Niagara in Lockport starting at 7 p.m. Guest speaker will be Capt. Paul Czarnecki of Free Spirit Charters talking about spring fishing out of Point Breeze and the Oak. And speaking of Point Breeze, local support is being tossed their way for the Ultimate Fishing Town contest that was won by Olcott Beach last year. Be sure to start voting!
2. Lower Niagara River
In the Niagara River, action has been good for trout like steelhead and lake trout, with the occasional brown trout thrown in. The surprise catch last week was a 24 pound salmon taken from Devil’s Hole by a South Carolina angler on an egg sac treated with Pautzke cure. The smelt run is starting to dissipate.