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Landlocked Salmon Fishing on the Boquet River

Related links:

Salmon Fishing on Lake Champlain Tributaries - overview page

Boquet River Flows - US Geological Survey web site

Much of the Boquet River salmon fishery occurs below the dam and fishway in Willsboro (Essex County) which is located on Route 22 about 30 miles south of Plattsburgh. Anglers can reach Willsboro via Interstate highway 87 (Adirondack Northway) Exits 31-33 with Route 22 from Exit 33 being the least confusing route from the interstate. The dam at Willsboro is located downstream from the Route 22 bridge, which crosses the river in the middle of town. Take Mill or School Street (found on either side of the river) to the parking areas located beyond the paved sections. School Street also leads to a cartop boat launch that provides access to about 2 miles of flatwater which leads to the river mouth at Lake Champlain.

During the Spring, salmon do not progress past the rapids or the fishway. At this time, the flatwater section mentioned above provides most of the angling action. Try trolling or casting from small boats. Wading anglers can fish the pools above the flatwater but downstream of the cascades below the Willsboro Dam. Be aware that angling is prohibited from a marked boundary below the dam (at the base of the cascades section) upstream to Route 22.

Fall-run salmon migrate further upstream, challenging the rapids on their way to spawning habitat. For the best fishing, try the pools downstream of the above noted boundary, and pools from the Route 22 bridge upstream to the impassible falls in Wadhams.

Anglers are reminded that fall regulations restrict the use of weighted baits, lures, and flies. For details, consult the Lake Champlain- Additional Tributary Regulations section in the Fishing Regulations Guide.

Boquet River map