The Salmon River
Trout and Orwell
Douglaston Salmon Run
Little Sandy Creek
Pulaski to Altmar
The Oswego River
Fly Fishing Only Sections
Below are descriptions of the Salmon River and other streams in the region.
These descriptions should be read in conjunction with the Maps provided on this
site, which also depict the streams and access points.
For a description of fishing methods and techniques, and a history and
background of the Salmon River, please see our Stream Fishing page.
Douglaston Salmon Run, known as the old "DSR", is a private paid-access fishing area
that covers approximately 2½ miles, or 25,000 feet of the river from the estuary
to just west of Pulaski. The fee to fish in the DSR, from August through April,
is $45 per person. In May through July, fishing is open only to their lodge
renters. A limited number of season passes are available on a lottery basis. The
DSR limits access to 350 anglers per day on a first-come, first-served basis.
During the peak of the salmon run, the permits may sell out in the morning.
Permits can be purchased after noon on the day before. The gate to the DSR,
where access is provided and where permits can be obtained, is located on the
north side of Lake Street (County Route 5), about two miles west of the Village
of Pulaski. The DSR can be reached by telephone at 315.298.6672. Conditions at
the DSR are available at their website at
The DSR imposes regulations in addition to all the New York State regulations.
Check with the DSR for details. Significant additional regulations include catch
and release only for trout (i.e., steelhead and brown trout) and atlantic
salmon, and the need for river cleats after November 1.
Many consider the DSR some of the finest fishing waters on the river. This area
does see the freshest fish, which have just entered the river and passed through
the estuary and have seen minimal river fishing pressure. Many local river
guides take their clients to the DSR and provide passes as part of their guide
The DSR area has a number of named areas. Beginning from the west near the
estuary, the first area is known as the Lower Clay Hole. This is the area where
the waterway transitions from an estuary to a river. Proceeding upstream the
named areas are Meadow Run, Clay Hole, Spring Hole, Joss Hole, The Flats, Wall
Hole, Sycamore Hole, The Glide, Little Black Hole, Black Hole and Coho Hole. A
map of the DSR area is provided on our Maps page.
The areas within the DSR can be accessed only from the north side of the river
from the one parking lot and access area maintained by the DSR. There are two
sets of steps in the DSR. The set straight south of the parking lot will take
you down to the area just upstream of the Wall Hole. The steps to the west take
you down trails and eventually to about the Joss Hole. There is no access from
the south side of the river in this area. Some of the named areas of the DSR are
only partially on DSR property and the north sides of these regions can be
accessed without a DSR permit. The most notable area which is partially within
the DSR area and partially outside the DSR is the Black Hole.
first major pool which is accessible outside the DSR is the Black Hole. It is
just west of Pulaski and just below the sewer treatment plant. The south side of
the pool, which is on DSR property, is a high and inaccessible cliff. This is a
large and long pool at a bend in the river.
To access the Black Hole, go west out of Pulaski on Bridge Street. At the bend
in the road, turn on the access road to the Municipal garage. In early 2000, the
parking lot past the garage was closed due to construction but you could follow
the access road to the sewer plant and park there. There is a path that takes
you down the cliff to the pool.
The next pool upriver and within the Village of Pulaski is called the Long
Bridge Pool or the Staircase Pool. The Long Bridge is the bridge on South
Jefferson Street (a.k.a. Route 11) which passes over the river. To access this
pool, turn off South Jefferson Street just north of the bridge onto James
Street. At the end of James Street, turn left onto Forest Drive and you will see
the parking area. This is a small parking lot and may be full in peak times of
the year. There is also a high bank on the south side of this pool.
Right in the center of
Pulaski is the Short Bridge Pool or the Town Pool. This is the pool which
extends upstream from the shorter bridge on Salina Street (a.k.a. Route 11).
This pool begins under the bridge and ends upstream beyond the end of the wall.
It is a deep pool which often holds many fish. Because of its ease of access it
can be very crowded during the salmon run. Watching people standing on the wall
many feet above the water who try to walk along the wall, past many other
anglers, down the rocks and to the river to attempt to land a salmon is quite a
There is no public parking lot specifically for the Town Pool. However, there is
a free public parking lot on Maple Avenue (a.k.a. Route 2) in town just east of
North Jefferson Street. There is a gazebo and steps which lead down to the
river. This will put you on the north side of the river just upstream from the
Town Pool. Sometimes you can also park on the street in town.
Still in Pulaski is the Dunbar Field pool or Ball Field pool. This area can be
accessed from two directions. From Route 13, turn north on the road (which looks
like the driveway) which is just west of Deaton's Hardware Store (and Deaton's
is just west of the railroad tracks). Follow the road around past the hardware
store and you will find parking. You can also access this area by traveling east
on Lewis Street. Lewis Street begins just east of the Short Bridge. Follow Lewis
Street to its end and you will find a large parking lot.
The last major access point within Pulaski, and which is almost directly north
of Dunbar Field, is the area known as the Haldane Community Center area. This
large parking area is located just before the Haldane Community Center and the
ball field. It is accessed by turning off Maple Avenue (a.k.a. Route 2) onto
Maple Avenue Extension. The lot is located a short distance on the extension. It
is across from Haldane Run, a tributary to the Salmon River.
There are two fly fishing only sections on the Salmon River. In these sections
you may fish only with a traditional fly reel and rod, and you must use only
traditional artificial flies. Both sections are catch and release only - no fish
of any kind may be creeled. See the Regulations page for details.
The fact that no fish can be kept in these sections does tend to result in the
attraction of anglers who are more interested in the skill of catching fish than
securing their next meal. It can be a pleasant break from what can be fierce
intensity during the salmon season on lower sections of the river.
The lower fly fishing only section begins in Altmar at the County Route 52
bridge and goes upstream 1/4 mile to marked boundary at Beaverdam Brook. As
explained above in the description of the School House Pool, there are parking
lots on each side of the river - one upstream from the bridge on one just
downstream. The lower fly fishing only section is typically open for fishing
from September 15 until May 1 each year.
If you are coming from Pulaski on Route 13, bear to the left before Altmar on
Pulaski Street (Old Route 13). Take it to its end at Route 52 (a.k.a. Bridge
Street) and you will see the southern parking lot in front of you. The other lot
is just north on Bridge Street and on the other side of the river.
Immediately upstream from
the bridge at the beginning of the lower fly fishing section is the Cemetery
Pool. This is a deep pool and is an excellent producer. It can be effectively
fished from either side.
Upstream of the Cemetery Pool are fast riffles, then a long run which can also
be productive. There is a cliff on the southern side of this area. Although the
river can be accessed along this side, there is little room to maneuver.
The upper fly fishing only section begins just above the Salmon River Fish
Hatchery and ends at the marked boundary at the Lighthouse Hill Reservoir. This
section of the river is generally open to fishing only between April 1 and
November 30. The sign states it is closed after November 30 to protect eagles
which nest in the area. The upper fly fishing section is 6/10ths of a mile in
length. It has a steeper gradient than most places on the river and therefore
more fast water. It can also be productive after April 1 for Brown Trout and
There is a designated parking lot for the Upper Fly Fishing Section which is
located on the north side of Route 22 (a.k.a. Cemetery Road) between the Salmon
River Fish Hatchery and the Lower Reservoir.
is another stream fished for salmon and steelhead. Although it is not a
tributary to the Salmon River, its confluence with Lake Ontario is just south of
the mouth of the Salmon River. Grindstone Creek enters Lake Ontario at the
southern edge of Selkirk Shores State Park, and the estuary of the Salmon River
borders the north side of the Park.
Grindstone Creek is much smaller than the Salmon River and is slightly larger
than Trout and Orwell Brook. Grindstone is stocked with both steelhead and brook
trout, and is sometime stocked with chinook. Regardless of its stocking, many
salmon and steelhead find their way into this creek.
The mouth of Grindstone Creek can be accessed from the large parking lot in
Selkirk Shores State Park. Follow the main road of the park to the parking lot
for the beach area. Grindstone Creek is just south of the parking lot.
There are three state parking lots for upper Grindstone. The first lot is on
Route 28. Upstream is a lot on Krebs Road, and upstream from that is a lot on
Route 48 before the village of Fernwood. There is a low head dam on the creek in
Fernwood which impedes upstream migration.