by Roger Phillips
Best spots are between Barber Dam, Glenwood
Salmon are coming to the Boise River today and should be ready for anglers this afternoon.
Idaho Department of Fish and Game crews will stock about 200 chinook salmon in the Boise River between Glenwood Bridge and Barber Dam.
Anglers haven't been able to fish for salmon in the Boise River since 2002.
On Monday, just rumors of salmon coming to Boise got several people into Turner's Sports Fair on State Street to buy salmon permits, owner John Turner said.
Work schedules and inability to travel makes it hard for some people to fish for salmon, he said. For example, one of the closest places to fish for salmon is about 150 miles away near Riggins.
"A lot of guys don't have a chance to go up there (to Riggins), so this gives them a chance to fish for them here in town," Turner said.
F&G commissioners met via conference call Tuesday and approved the special salmon fishing season on the Boise River. The season will run until Sept. 6.
Dan McComb of Boise is retired and doesn't fish as much as he used to, but he said it'll be great for local anglers to have salmon fishing so close to Boise.
"Sounds like you can go fish from the shore (on the Boise River), but of course that's nothing new," he said.
McComb said in the old days the salmon used to come up the Snake River before dams were built and then on to the Boise River.
"I have seen pictures of them. People were getting the salmon with pitch forks," he quipped. "The fish were so thick in the river you could practically walk on them."
F&G anadromous fish manager Sharon Kiefer said she expects about 500 salmon will be planted in the Boise River in the next few weeks.
The total depends on how many hatchery salmon are trapped at Hells Canyon after they migrate up the Snake River. When the fish get caught in the traps, hatchery workers take however many they need for spawning. A portion of the rest get put on trucks and sent to the Boise River. Oregon and the Nez Perce tribe also get some of the fish.
Salmon anglers must have an Idaho fishing license and a valid salmon permit. The permit costs $11.50. If you don't have a permit, you must release any salmon you catch. Bag limits for the Boise River are two salmon per day.
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