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Posted (edited)

Hello, Does anyone know where to net some smelt in New York?  I know they used to run the creeks of Lake Ontario and the Finger lakes, but it seems they aren't fished for much anymore.  And I have never tried.  Any assistance would be appreciated.   

 

Thanks, 

Chris 

 

ps.  A Snook 30" I caught in Florida couple weeks ago.  Unfortunately the season has been closed because of last years Red tide. So it was released successfully. 😊 for next time.

20190213_212918.jpg

Edited by cadr333

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Smelt are hard to find these days and I'm not optimistic anyone who knows a real viable spot will share, but good luck.  Invent a time machine and I'll take you myself!!!!

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Justin is right there are very few places where they exist in any numbers now. As kids we used to get them in most streams in the Fingers  and Fairhaven etc..but those days are pretty much gone. There is one lake that freezes over where they can be caught at night through the ice but I am not at liberty to mention it without being "strung up". To some they are considered a delicacy while I still consider them "bait":lol:

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I love them battered and fried.  Thanks for the information.   I wonder why the decline?  I chased some salmon this Summer who were attacking a silvery with brownish top baitfish out in the lake near the Oswego powerplant.   Wonder what they were.  I assumed smelt.  Grew up fishing the Gulf of Mexico and I have a boat now and attempting to learn boat fishing up here.

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Years ago, I used to go to the Niagara river near Artpark in Lewiston, Ny. Always caught Smelt. Still can be caught according to other websites but I have not personally gone in years. Had alot of fun then though.Good luck.

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Keep on eye on the Lake Ontario water temperature. Historically, When the water is 42 degrees or so....the smelt will start their run up the Niagara river.

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Usually right after the ice clears the lower river which best guess should be right around good Friday this year.

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Well, I also look for the Daffodils around the area and I have not seen any close to blooming. A few warm days may help the temps. I do think the run will be quite late this year. I hope you can get your fill. 8 qts a day limit, I think. Good luck to all. Please post when they do run.

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Artpark in LEWISTON IS A GOOD SPOT WENT THERE A FEW YEARS AGO,FEW FISHERMAN LOTS OF SMELT,DONE IN A FEW HOURSas you can only take 2 gallons a person

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Yes John, We always did well there. The only bad thing was the slippery killer stairs! Other than that, we would always have a good time. And yes 2 gal=8 qts. Used to be unlimited, but we would only take what we could eat and freeze. Sometimes 1 1/2 to 2 gals was plenty. I hear that catches like that from earlier days are few and far between. Oh! By the way....I did see a few Daffodils around my house today too..............

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I remember as a kid we would go to point plee in Lake Erie smelt dipping, we would bring home garbage cans full , we would spend the next day cleaning them 

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there is a easier way down to river,a path by the parking lot is faster,it had a rope railing the last time i was there

 

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Posted (edited)

LOL John, the last I tried that path with muddy boots ....I think you might know what happened and where I ended up....

LOL.!  Still had fun though.   And my previous post I ment to say 1 1/2 - 2/     5 Gal buckets. John I'm from Rochester...where you from my friend?

 

Edited by BobM
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Last time I went dipping at Lewiston I could of had my limit before I left the parking lot.Some out of state guys got a little greedy and did the double dip. When they came to there vehicle with there second limit the DEC gave them the shake down and confiscated all there Smelt.Was glad to see them doing there job.The officers offered us there confiscated Smelt but I wanted to get my own.Which my friend and I did in short order.May 4th is the night to go guaranteed Smelt and cooked and cleaned to boot (the best kind).        https://www.wnypapers.com/news/article/featured/2019/01/23/135638/lewiston-smelt-festival-moving-to-academy-park

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Sean, Glad to see the DEC was on the ball and watching. Were you at Art Park? Too much of that poaching going on. One time we went the Border Patrol was driving around Art Park looking for Vietnamese  Sneaking over from Canada. They said $1000 a person would buy a boat ride from Canada to USA. This was back in the 90's.

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Water temp is 41 degrees off Rochester...I see Daffodils around the area too. I think this weekend may be good. Check other Niagara River fishing websites. It may be Smelting Time!!!!! Good luck to all.........

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Any Smelt action at Niagara River Yet?. Bullhead should be in at the Lake shore ponds in Rochester soon too. Maybe after a warm rain and a few warmer days this week.

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There pulling the ice boom on Erie today, the DEC said that there was very little smelt in the lower river because of the cold water coming out of Erie and all the ice there. maybe after the ice has gone it will be good.

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