There’s lots of good fishing for salmon, steelhead and brown trout ahead! Stay at the shop Licorice Lodge in the heart of the OOrchard fishing action! OR new lodging available at our well appointed private ground floor Garage Lodge located just 5 miles east on Route 18, convienent to Sandy Creek. Call ASAP for reservations!

The Oak Orchard Pen Rearing Association received approx 15,000 steelhead placed in net pens in the OOrchard Apr 2016. Approx 106,000 King salmon where placed in the net pens for hopeful imprinting on the OOrchard. These numbers represent just some of the total number of salmonids stocked here in Orleans County annually. Many thanks to local stakeholders for their efforts of securing, feeding and monitoring the fish. More tributary anglers are invited to help with feeding the fish and cleaning the pens. Contact us for how and where to help out in 2017. Be sure you contact NYSDEC with comments on the cormorant situation and the impacts on the young stocked salmonids.

The Sportsmen Archer’s Club Fly Fishing Only Catch and Release Contest will be held Oct 19, 20, 21 – 2016. Everyone always enjoys the great hospitality and comradorie of the Archer’s Club and will experience some good fishing. Their cooperation with out of the area fishermen is truly above board and greatly appreciated by all. Please contact us or see the Club for registration. This quote from the Archers Club – “The access to the Archer’s Club to fish 2016 spring fishing – park at the top of hill and walk down to fish. Fall fishing, parking and breakfast/lunch will start the first week of Oct and run thru Veterans Day. After that fishermaen can park at the top of the hill and walk down.” All non club members are reminded to act as courteous and responsible guests on the private bankside lands of the Archer’s Club so that we may all enjoy the fishing access there now and in the future.

We encourage all users to follow the site rules for access and fishing on the Brookfield Power Company lands. We cannot speak for the power company or interpret their site rules. We have a map posted outside the shop door highlighting the PFD zone just downstream of the dam and on the overflow channel on the OOrchard. We can also forward you a copy of the Brookfield Power Company brochure highlighting that area if you provide us your email. For specific questions about the Waterport dam site rules you can email We continue to lobby for better water access on the far side or west side of the Waterport dam hydro pool and we encourage you to do the same with Brookfield, NYSDEC and/or Orleans County Tourism.

Orleans Outdoor has changed it’s name to Oak Orchard Tackle & Lodge. Check out our new sign and logo in current fish pics below. Watch for other changes soon like our new website. If you’re reading this you should be at our new fishing conditions page.  We hope to go live with more upgrades this winter/spring! We look forward to another nearly 20 years as WNY’s longest running speciality trout and salmon tributary fly, spin and float shop!

Its all about water flows…  Water flows are the single biggest factor in encouraging upstream movements of fish during the fall, winter and spring trib seasons.  Here’s our OOrchard flows rating which we generally use to describe other area smaller trib flows too.  We are generally most confident in our OOrchard interpretations, less so in the other area smaller tribs.  Remember use caution in interpreting upstream OOrchard USGS gauging stations that can mean little or nothing for flows downstream of the Waterport hydro considering both turbine channel and overflow levels.

Real low, low, mod, mod – med, med, slightly high, slightly high – high, high, real high, blown.    Intrepid anglers are capable of catching fish on the OOrchard in all of these flows , save for maybe blown AND dirty.  Remember the turbine channel can only get so high, which is still actually fishable, unless its high AND dirty.

Fishing Updates

weekend Apr 29...

OOrchard flows are slightly high and stained with about 2 ft of stained viz.  Flows consist of a good head of mostly turbine water.  Forecast is for temps in the 50’s F for the weekend and a sharp warmup for begin of the upcoming week and then cooling down.  Chance of rain or thunderstorms starting Sun.  Any more precip will keep flows up and stained.  Significant rain could cause flows to go higher with overflow water.  Fishing pressure is lite and yet we can confirm anglers getting good drifts in the higher OOrchard flows were into some steelhead action on Fri.  With a return to cool weather and the flows staying up there should be the chance for steelhead or lake run browns or smallmouth action into May.  Casting chances still look good, esp with cooler weather returning and any baitfish in-shore migrations and the in-shore Lake waters remaining cool.  Starting Mon 5/01 the shop will be on reduced summer operating hours, be sure to call or email for any help, questions or lodge reservations.  Summer is a good time to invest in fly, float or spin rods/reels since we can offer some exceptional sale prices – contact us for details.  Thanks for the past fall, winter and spring support.

Apr 27...

Some exceptional hot weather today and then forecast slightly cooler for the rest of week and weekend.  Chance for thunderstorm today.  OOrchard flows are still humping along with lots of turbine water at slightly high – high and stained with about 2 feet of viz.  Lots of upstream supply and high big Lake O levels are not allowing a quick draining of currents into the Lake.  Still a handful of guys out looking for last lick steelhead chances on some quickly warming flows.  Other area smaller tribs have med – slightly high flows with best chances now at warm water action or the occasional brown or steelhead.  Trib mouth and lakeshore casting chances are good with pretty good movements of baitfish on shore.  Like the trib water temps, those in-shore waters are warming up – quicker for sure then we’ve seen the past few years it seems.

Apr 25...

OOrchard turbine flows are retreating slowly.  Overflow levels have diminished after heavy rains last week.  Viz is stained at about 1 – 2 feet.  There was some rain today that should maintain flows at the slightly high – high and stained level at least thru this week.  Forecast is mostly clear and warming thru the rest of the week.  The last blow out was pretty short lived and a few guys managed to fish right thru.  The flows were up and crested and didn’t get  terrible dirty thanks to already some emerging greenery.  Still some last lick steelhead chances for dropbacks or fresh jacks or possible fresh steelhead or lake run browns.  Plenty of suckers too and the chance for a big lake run smallmouth.  The other area smaller tribs have something like med – slightly high and stained flows.  Those waterways have warmer water temps with the chance at some dropback steelhead or lake run browns or smallmouth.  Land lubber casters on the big Lake O are into some chunky browns when wind and waves coincide for semi stained water.  Alewives are present off and on both east and west of the OOrchard.

weekend Apr 22...

OOrchard flows are blown and flooded and dirty.  Full bore turbine flows and lots o overflow water.  Flows may crest by about tomorrow and begin to recede thru next week. At least all the recent high overflow levels may allow for steelhead to drop back out and get to the Lake.  No doubt a few fresh fish will move up into the overflow channel tho too.  The other area smaller tribs have high and blown and dirty flows.  Those waterways have crested and should be back on the drop now and thru the weekend.

Apr 21...

Thanks to 2 inches or so of rain thru yesterday all the trib flows are blown, flooded and dirty.  OOrchard flows consist of lots of turbine and overflow water.  Overflow levels are still likely on the rise so OOrchard flows may not crest for a couple days yet.  Right now in the AM and prob thru the better part of today guys are still able to get fair drifting licks in on the OOrchard in the turbine channel mainly at the dam.  Remember the turbine channel can only get so high and the dirty water has not hit it yet.  Dirty water is coming tho, and prob by later today or tomorrow water color will be muddy.  Landlubber shoreline casting could be challenging again with all the tribs pumping out dirty plumes.  Alewives have been making an appearance both west and east and at the OOrchard so some hungry trout and salmon could be moving into still cool in-shore waters to feed.  This baitfish activity is a good sign, I haven’t noted alewife activity like this for a couple of years previous.

Apr 18...

OOrchard flows continue to retreat to slightly high and stained with 1 – 2 ft of viz.  Overflow levels are no more, just a little bit of sluice gate water.  Fishing pressure is lite, a handful of guys on the water.  Precip thru the past weekend was not enough to cause any big change in trib flows, and there’s emerging greenery now that will mean more capture and less runoff.  Anglers should find a few spawning fish and mainly some dropbacks, jacks, smallmouth bass or suckers.  Water temps are warming prob in the 50’s or near 60 F but still some cool nights should keep water temps from spiking too high for a happy steelhead.  You’ll be glad for one or two hook-ups on a bat crazy steelhead or jack in 60 degree water!  The other area smaller tribs have med and slightly stained flows and its prob a few dropbacks or lake run browns persistent enough to hang in the waterway looking for baitfish.  Landlubber casting is looking better with what looks to me to be more shoreline and trib mouth baitfish activity, for now, then I’ve seen in maybe a couple years.

spring tackle sale!

We are overstocked on some great trib tackle – rods and reels and combos and wading jacs/gear especially.  In most cases the sale prices are too low to advertise.  Check out the new Kype float rods – a high end, high tech production rod that’s better then a custom rod.  Kype’s “Dropback Steelhead Sale” means 15% off reg price.  For the rest of our gear including fly rods/reels, float rods/reels, spin rods/reels and wading jacs/gear – the discounts are 10 – 15% off and up to 20% off on combos.  Select purchases can receive $50 store credit for flies or merchandise.  Great names like Redington, Lamson, Okuma, Daiwa, Bauer, Raven, Sheffield, GLoomis, St. Croix and Frogg Toggs, etc…  How about a switch rod set-up to keep the line waver tradition going?!  Call 585 682 4546 or email to check out what we have available.  Great opportunity on an upgrade!

spring tackle rebates/offers

Redington is offering a $25 rebate on Vice fly rods and a $25 rebate on all waders.  Oak Orchard Tackle sale prices also apply plus the rebate from the manufacturer.  P-Line has a buy one spool get one free on their new Tactical Fluorocarbon and you can take advantage of the BOGO right here at the shop. We have 8, 10 and 12 pound.

Remember you still have to get out and fish… Come experience great fishing as it takes place instead of solely relying and waiting on internet reports. Anglers who find the best fishing often anticipate when the right conditions will come together. Internet bragging seems a lot less prevelant then it was a few years ago, and our reports tend to be even keeled – not reporting fish numbers great enough that they would be jumping in your waders – even if they were! Good water flows will be the biggest factor for trout and salmon migrations in the Oak Orchard River and in the area smaller tribs and pushing them upstream. Weather and the calendar is the biggest factor for angling pressure and bringing more fishermen out or keeping them indoors. There are always some exceptional fish caught in the trib season, just check out the pics below and in the archives. Come on out and get in on some trophy action this fall, winter and spring and add to the photo collection!

What does the Oak Orchard River, the Lakeshore and other WNY tribs offer? The chance to fish from your own two feet for trout and salmon you measure in pounds, not inches, for 7 – 9 months depending upon weather and water conditions. A trip to the Oak Orchard River and WNY to fish for World Class trout and salmon is still easily the best bargain in trophy fishing. The working man’s big trout and salmon trip is still here, and it’s not even a contest compared to the other exotic, far off angling destinations. We believe our web reports are the straightest poop by far about Oak Orchard and most WNY conditions. We are living and experiencing all the fishing action directly or thru trusted reports of other die hard anglers as it happens. So how do you know if trophy trout and salmon will be catchable upon your travels to the Oak Orchard and WNY area? All the best web info, bulletin boards, angler skill and top notch equipment cannot replace getting out there and actually fishing! The nuances of fish migrations is an inexact science and we cannot predict the future. Fish as soon as reasonable conditions allow instead of waiting for supposed better conditions that may or may not materialize. Be one of the lucky few that experiences good fishing as it takes place instead of hearing that famous quote, “you should have been here yesterday!”

Tight lines and smooth drags!
Licorice Man

Latest Catch Photos

Steelhead glory to the swung fly in the OOrchard for end Jan 2016/begin Feb 2017.  Will you be there when a chromer moves upstream?  Don’t wait for Apr and ask if the steelhead are in yet!

Good steelhead action for fresh fish up and down the OOrchard River on retreating and clearing flows for begin of Mar 2017.  Savvy trib anglers anticipate good hook-up chances on the backside of high flows when reasonable weather and water conditions coincide!

A nice steelhead after changeable winter weather and a rise in OOrchard flows mid – late Feb 2017.  Stained water color means prime chances for good fly drifts and willing biters!