The steelhead harvest season is open on the Boise, Clearwater, Salmon, Little Salmon and lower Snake rivers.
The steelhead limit on the Boise, Snake, Salmon and Little Salmon rivers is three per day and nine in possession. The limit on the Clearwater is two fish per day and six in possession. Anglers may keep 20 steelhead for the season. Once limits are reached, the angler must stop fishing, even catch-and-release.
Waters open for steelhead harvest are:
- Boise River from its mouth upstream to Barber Dam.
- Salmon River from its mouth upstream to the posted boundary 100 yards downstream from the Sawtooth Fish Hatchery weir, near the town of Stanley.
- Little Salmon River from its mouth upstream to the U.S. Highway 95 bridge near Smokey Boulder Road.
- Snake River from the Washington state line at the confluence of the Snake and Clearwater rivers upstream to Hells Canyon Dam.
- Clearwater River mainstem and Middle Fork from its mouth upstream to Clear Creek.
- North Fork Clearwater River from its mouth upstream to Dworshak Dam.
- South Fork Clearwater River from its mouth upstream to the confluence of American and Red Rivers.
The fall steelhead season ends December 31.
Anglers must have a valid Idaho fishing license and steelhead permit. They must stop fishing when the possession limit is reached – even catch-and-release. Steelhead anglers may use only barbless hooks, except in the Boise River, and may keep only hatchery steelhead marked with a clipped adipose fin. All other steelhead must be released unharmed.
In the boundary waters on the Snake River between Idaho and Oregon or Washington, an angler with a valid 2012 Idaho fishing license and steelhead permit may fish where the river forms the boundary between Idaho and Oregon or Washington, but may not fish from the shorelines, including wading or in sloughs or tributaries on the Oregon or Washington side. An angler may have only the limit allowed by one license regardless of the number of licenses the angler holds.
For more information on steelhead fishing in Idaho, consult the 2011-2012 fishing rules and seasons brochure, available at all license vendors, Fish and Game offices and online at:http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/fish/rules/steelhead.pdf.
Image courtesy Idaho Fish and Game