Salem Lake open for season’s fishing

SALEM – Fishing has been pretty good since the Salem Lake opened on Tuesday, according to Dave Hughes of Lisbon.

A long-time fisherman, Hughes, was out on the first two days but got through opening day without his fishing pal Carl Rouse, 70, also from Lisbon, who died days before the lake opened on Monday.

“This is my first year out here without him,” Hughes said, “he missed it by three days.”

The fish have been biting.

“I just had a real nice bass and lost it at the bank,” Hughes said, “that’s why I come here because the fishing’s good.”

The lake attendant said, “We’ve had pretty good attendance, we’re looking for the weekend when those crappie start kicking in because they’re easy for the kids to catch.”

The Salem Lake opens at 7 a.m. and closes at 9 p.m. (dusk) six days a week and is closed on Mondays except for Monday holidays.

No swimming is allowed.

Hughes was out early both days and was surprised the fishing was “relatively good” despite the bad weather on Monday.

By mid-afternoon Tuesday, Hughes had caught and released 10 bass, while catching about 20 crappie and 10 to 12 blue gills.

“It just surprised me for this time of year,” Hughes said.

The attendant said, “Most guys yesterday (Tuesday) were using small minnows and some were using jerk-bait.”

A daily fishing pass for 15-year-olds and up is $5 a day; for 13 and 14-year-olds it is $3 a day. Seasonal individual passes are $40; and family (up to five) seasonal passes are $50 a year. Additions to the family pass are $6 per person.

The lake is open until the last Sunday in September.

The Parks Department operates the lake under the supervision of the Utilities Department.

There are 18 boats that can be rented for $2.50 per hour or for a maximum six hours from $36 a day to $45 per day based on an hourly charge for each piece of equipment – boat, motor, or battery that is rented.

To get to the lake from Salem, take Depot Road south for approximately 4.5 miles to Teegarden Road and turn right and continue for approximately 1.5 miles to Gamble Road.

Turn south onto Gamble Road and travel approximately one mile to the lake’s main entrance.

For information, call 330-222-2609.

Larry Shields can be reached at