Winter weather brings Brown Trout and Steelhead action – Orleans County, NY

This report is by Ron Bierstine from Oak Orchard Tackle & Lodge on Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019:

There’s been an abrupt change in the weather with snow on Veterans Day and through the night with a drop in temperature.

Nice brown trout! Courtesy of Kevin Oxford

Something like 6 – 8+ inches of area-wide snow and forecast temps in the 20’s °F for the mid-week.

Some uncommon Lake Effect Snow from NW winds may add some additional accumulations today here on the WNY Niagara Frontier.  Temps are expected to moderate through the upcoming weekend and through next week slowly.  That resultant snowmelt should be good for maintenance flows.

For now, the fishing pressure has fallen off dramatically, more like what you would expect for the end of the month.  With few guys out, reports are few.  This past weekend’s action sounded pretty good and, not surprising with the change in the weather yesterday, guys had a tougher time.  A mixed bag action was still the common report with a few browns, steelhead, Atlantics and a King here and there.

Final Erie Canal wintertime drainage is slated to commence today.  That will place a slug of water reaching the Waterport dam and flowage in about a day.  Look for higher and slightly off-color flows from what’s been medium-ish and dropping and clearing.  That spate of water from the Canal is historically a good trigger for fresh fish migrations and with this year’s record of slow and drawn out “runs” that started with the Kings, it should be all the better for brown trout and steelhead and Atlantic salmon migrations.

For now, the other area smaller tributaries is at moderate and clearing flows where scattered fish, no doubt, felt the abrupt change in the weather more so than say the Oak.  Look for future rising flows there with any snowmelt or the chance for Erie Canal winter time drainage releases.

What do we know?  Any rise in water flow can mean the chance for fresh fish migrations from Lake waters OR upstream movements of fish from downstream spots!