Blue Stream Fly Fishing
Fly Fishing Report for:

Saranac River - Plattsburgh - New York

Hatch Chart - Best Access/Spots - Local Fish - About

Water Flow Chart

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Using Water Flow Charts & Weather Reports: Begin with our water flow charts to grasp stream velocity and volume – look for stable or rising trends to pinpoint ideal fishing times. Learn to interpret sudden spikes or drops, which can indicate potential challenges. Next, consult our weather reports to understand ambient conditions. Pairing the two, you can anticipate fish behavior, choose the right gear, and select the best fishing spots. Use these tools together for a holistic approach to your next fishing adventure.

In-Depth Weather

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Directions To Location

Hatch Chart

Month Hatch Time of Day Recommended Fly Sizes Popular Fly Patterns
January Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Griffith's Gnat, F-Fly
BWO Late Afternoon #16-#18 Olive Emerger, PMD Nymph
February Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Griffith's Gnat, F-Fly
BWO Late Afternoon #16-#18 Olive Emerger, PMD Nymph
March Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Zebra Midge, Griffith's Gnat
BWO Afternoon #16-#18 PMD Nymph, Sparkle Dun
April Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Zebra Midge, Griffith's Gnat
Caddis Evening #14-#16 Elk Hair Caddis, X-Caddis
May Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Zebra Midge, Griffith's Gnat
Caddis Evening #14-#16 Elk Hair Caddis, X-Caddis
June Caddis Evening #14-#16 Elk Hair Caddis, Goddard Caddis
Yellow Stones Afternoon #12-#14 Stimulator, Prince Nymph
July Tricos Morning #20-#22 Trico Spinner, Griffith's Gnat
Caddis Evening #14-#16 Elk Hair Caddis, X-Caddis
August Caddis Evening #14-#16 Elk Hair Caddis, X-Caddis
Tricos Morning #20-#22 Trico Spinner, Griffith's Gnat
September BWO Afternoon #16-#18 Olive Emerger, PMD Nymph
Caddis Evening #14-#16 Elk Hair Caddis, X-Caddis
October BWO Afternoon #16-#18 Olive Emerger, PMD Nymph
Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Zebra Midge, Griffith's Gnat
November Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Griffith's Gnat, F-Fly
BWO Late Afternoon #16-#18 Olive Emerger, PMD Nymph
December Midges Afternoon #20-#22 Griffith's Gnat, F-Fly
BWO Late Afternoon #16-#18 Olive Emerger, PMD Nymph

While we strive to ensure the precision of our hatch charts, some reflect broader river region insights. Through ongoing partnerships with local guides and fly shops, we’re committed to refining our data. Should you notice any inconsistencies or have feedback, we welcome you to reach out. 

Best Fishing Spots

The Saranac River in Plattsburgh offers several terrific spots for fly-fishing.
  • Imperial Dam: Located just downstream of the city, the Imperial Dam area provides an abundance of brown trout. It’s a popular spot due to the fish’s behavior of congregating around the stream inputs.
  • Plattsburgh City Beach: The section of the Saranac River that runs by the city beach is fit to burst with smallmouth and largemouth bass, creating an exciting fishing experience.
  • Macomb Reservation State Park: Approximately 10 miles upstream of Plattsburgh, this spot offers tranquil fishing for all. The diverse array of fish species includes pike, perch, and bass.
  • Saranac Street Bridge: Near downtown Plattsburgh, this location is especially known for its winter fly-fishing, with ample, sizeable rainbow trout to be found.

Best Access Points

The Saranac River in Plattsburgh offers exceptional fly fishing opportunities. Here are some of the top spots to access this pristine waterway:

  • Moffitt Beach: With easy access to the riverbanks, it’s ideal for both wading and fly fishing from the shore.
  • Sickman Fishing Access: Just west of Plattsburgh, this site provides plentiful parking and boat launches, ideal for accessing the deeper parts of the river.
  • Saranac Street Bridge: Just a stone’s throw from downtown Plattsburgh, this bridge is perfect for fishermen who prefer urban conveniences nearby.
  • McKenzie Pond Road: As the river winds through primarily forested land, you’ll have the privilege to experience nature at its finest.
  • Sugar Island: Accessible year-round, the island offers abundant fish variety and scenic beauty- making it a popular choice among anglers.

Local Fish

  • Northern Pike: Known for their aggressive behavior and immense fighting spirit, Northern Pike are highly sought after by fly fishing enthusiasts.
  • Smallmouth Bass: The Saranac River offers an excellent population of Smallmouth Bass, making it a favorite among locals and tourists alike for fly fishing.
  • Largemouth Bass: Recognized for their impressive size and challenging catch, the species is specifically prevalent in the slower parts of the Saranac River.
  • Brook Trout: This local favorite offers an exciting and challenging sport for fly fishers, who enjoy the fight these species bring once hooked.
  • Brown Trout: Introduced to the Saranac River from Europe, Brown Trout are a popular quarry for fly fishers due to their resistant nature and the fact that they grow to considerable sizes.
  • Rainbow Trout: Despite not being native, this species is prevalent in the river’s waters and offers a significant challenge to even the most experienced fly fishers.
  • Walleye: Known for their eye-reflective layer which gleams in the dark, Walleye are a staple of the Saranac River and are loved by local fishers for their taste.
  • Muskellunge (Musky): Known as the “fish of ten thousand casts,” Musky are highly prized by catch and release anglers for their size and strength, creating an exciting battle for any fly fisher.

About The River

The Saranac River, a focal point of the historical city of Plattsburgh, is embedded with fascinating tales. Originating from the Adirondack Mountains, it marvelously meanders, covering a distance of around 81 miles before flowing into Lake Champlain. It has held an important role throughout American history.
  • The river was a crucial transportation route for native tribes, like the Mohawk and Iroquois.
  • The significance amplified during the American Revolutionary War and War of 1812, providing a key strategic advantage for military transport.
  • In the 19th-century, it spurred economic progress and boom, acting as a conduit for lumber and powered mills and factories.
Today, the river beautifies the urban landscapes of Plattsburgh, hosting numerous recreational activities like fishing, kayaking, and river-walks. The Saranac River, a vein of life, seamlessly threads past, present and future together, recounting tales of progression from a historical transport route to a cherished natural attraction.
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