Oswego River

Oswego River

The Oswego River is a wide body of water, stretching up to 500 feet across in many places.  It is one of the tributaries to Lake Ontario in New York State and is literally full of fish.  The one mile stretch from the dam to the lake has excellent runs of brown trout, salmon and Steelhead fishing annually along with a healthy supply of walleye, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, lake trout, pike and rainbow trout.  In this solitary mile of water this particular tributary arguably holds more fish than any of the other tributaries to Lake Ontario.

Oswego River Fishing Runs

Early October is normal for the Steelhead to start their run that will last into the winter and on to the spring.  These fish range anywhere from 4 pounds up to a whopping 20 pounds and can be caught from the middle of October all the way into the last week of April. Chinook salmon averaging between 10 and 30 pounds usually begin their run through the Oswego River at the end of August and last until the middle of October.  A few Coho salmon also appear with the Chinook.  Brown trout in the 4 pound to 10 pound ranges start their run around the middle of September and last until the early weeks of the winter.  Most of the big brown trout will be caught from the middle of October until the end of November.

Fishing Below the Dam on the Oswego River

Below the dam is good shallow area that is excellent for fly fishing.  The spot is full of small runs, pockets and small pools.  The bed is covered in shale making it tough to wade.  It is wise to use cleats in order to secure a sound footing.  Since this spot is so close to the dam the level of water can change quickly.  When the sirens go off announcing water release, it is best to head to the bank until the water calms.

Oswego River Fishing Techniques

During periods of high water the most productive Oswego River fishing technique is floating egg sacks using a spinning reel.  Most anglers are comfortable with the tried and true standby of egg sack under a float with a spread shot pattern of split shot.  It is probably a good idea to get an Oswego River water flow report before heading out.

It should be noted that during the heavy part of the salmon run it is not uncommon to see multiple anglers standing side by side in the limited areas for fishing.  This can make for quite a humorous site and create a lifelong memory of catching some beautiful fish on the Oswego River surrounded by people that share the same love for the sport.