Niagara USA Fishing Forecast

• Report for March 2, 2017

Roller Coaster Weather in Niagara County, New York
That rollercoaster weather ride continues, creating problems for area anglers. Warm temperatures into the 60s this week plunged into the 20s within 24 hours.  Mild temperatures into the 40s are in the forecast for the weekend. There has been no consistency … like the fishing.

Lake Ontario and tributaries
For Lake Ontario and the tributaries, fishing in 18 Mile Creek has been hit or miss. You have to work for your trout … or an occasional salmon.  Along with that, there have been perch and northern pike swimming around from the dam to the harbor.  Even out in the lake. In fact, some brown trout trollers off the mouth of the creek trolling stickbaits off planer boards are reporting a fair number of pike being caught, too.

Back to Burt Dam, the water has been stained, primarily due to recent rains.  Flow last Sunday was over 300 cfs, but that is settling down a bit now.  The increased flow definitely pulled some more fish into the creek.  Egg sacs and egg imitations are both good baits to start with. Jigs fished under a float and tipped with a spike or a wax worm will catch some fish, too.

Over in Wilson Harbor, pike and a few trout are hanging around. Some perch as well. Try casting for brown trout off the short pier at the end of Route 425. Check out some of the other small streams, too, like Keg and both branches of 12 Mile. Speaking of Wilson, make sure you mark April 7-9 on the calendar for the annual contest sponsored by the Wilson Conservation Club.  Call Eric at 628-6078 for details.  Remember that the State of Lake Ontario public meeting is set to be held at Cornell Cooperative Extension Niagara, 4487 Lake Avenue (Route 78), Lockport on March 7 starting at 6:30 p.m.

Lower Niagara River
Lower Niagara River action was on hold after the most recent set of wind and rain elements that saw temperatures soar into the 60s and drop 40 degrees.  Water was stained at mid-week.  Just prior to the blow, there were mixed reports on success.

Buffalo Sabres coach Dan Bylsma had a good day on the water with Captains Frank Campbell and Jim Hanley last Thursday.  If you want to see how good, check out the Buffalo News for Thursday, March 2, 2017.  Egg sacs, Kwikfish and minnows all caught fish that day, but the most effective was treated eggs put into sacs by Campbell and fished up in Devil’s Hole.

Around that same time, some shore guys were casting spoons and spinners in the gorge and taking some nice steelhead and lake trout.  The Niagara Bar has been a little slow, in part because of the excessive amount of baits around and the stained water.  Look for fishing to slowly improve by the weekend.  It was tough today in the river and the bar.

For those of you we have been asking about the Fort Niagara launch ramps, the total project should be completed by the end of May.  As least one ramp will be functional by early May for the start of the LOC Derby May 5.  They are connecting the two launches with docks on the water.

April 2 is the John Long, Sr. Memorial feast with the Niagara River Anglers.  More information will be on their Facebook page soon.

Bill Hilts, Jr., Director, Outdoor Promotions

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