Friday, March 1, 2013

IDFG Salmon River Access Area Report

The IDFG Salmon Region's Caryll McConnell sent along this morning a great summary of Upper Salmon River Access Area conditions.  Her report appears in italics below this classic photo of Deadwater.
Downriver below North Fork, the Deadwater Ice Jam is living up to its name.
The ice is starting to break up and form channels although  the river is far from free flowing.
Above is the view looking upriver from the USFS Deadwater Campground ice bridge bottleneck on 2-26-2013.
This week most accesses and boat ramps are open from Deer Gulch near Ellis, downriver through North Fork on Hwy 93. 

The exceptions are the BLM Morgan Bar campground and boat ramp, both of which are under ice and closed. Tower Rock Boat ramp was cleared earlier this week. For updates on these sites contact the Salmon BLM office. 

Salmon City’s Island Park and IDFG access sites Carmen Bridge, Red Rock, 4th of July, Bobcat Gulch and North Fork boat ramps have all been cleared with camping available at the IDFG sites. 

The small gravel bar take-out adjacent to 4th of July Creek is open but there is no turn-around space here other than on highway 93, use caution. 

The river has very little shore ice from Ellis to BLM Shoup Bridge making this approximately 40 miles of river bank enjoyable fishing. The IDFG Watts Bridge boat ramp is clear though connecting river passages are subject to ice dams so not advisable boating. 

BLM Cottonwood Recreation Site boat ramp is blocked with ice in addition to ice dams both above and below it as of Tuesday, 2/26.

IDFG/BLM Pennal Gulch gravel boat ramp is frozen with ice as is the Challis Bridge boat ramp. There is shore ice from Challis Bridge through Cottonwood as well, boating is inadvisable. The river is changing very quickly with warmer temperatures now.
 Above and below are two more river views between North Fork and the 
USFS Deadwater Campground showing open river channels, ice dams, and settling ice.
Below is one last classic view of the open river channel and
substantial shore ice between North Fork and Salmon.
And, finally, below is a view of IDFG's Bobcat Gulch boat ramp after it was cleared 02.28.13.
The snowbanks are 3-4 feet high on either side of the ramp.  IDFG courtesy photo.

Thank You, Caryll, for creating and providing this great report.  

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