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Old 12-28-2016, 05:03 PM   #1
madison
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Saranac Campground Info

Hello all,

I am looking to get a campsite in the Saranac Islands campground this upcoming June for opening weekend of bass season. It may seem early for this inquiry, but according to the ReserveAmerica website, the sites are filling up quickly for that weekend and indeed for the rest of the summer.

I am having difficulty finding information about specific sites. I camped once on Middle Saranac about 20 years ago; I remember a long paddle from the put-in on First Pond and passing through the locks, but I don't remember much about specific sites. Can anyone recommend specific sites on either Lower or Middle, or maybe give some advice as to which sites to avoid? I usually go to places like Cranberry or Little Tupper where it's 1st come, so if you don't like your site you just move to a better one. Not an option here, so I'm hoping to get some information to help me pick the right spot.

Any advice between Middle and Lower Saranac. I've read both are really good for bass, which is why I'm going there for the opening of the season. I'm wondering if there is something to recommend one over the other? Fishing is our primary reason for this particular trip, but I also like places with a quiet place to paddle or a nice hike.

Lastly, any idea what sort of boat traffic I should expect? We will be travelling by canoe, although I may bring the little electric trolling motor along.

Thanks in advance for any knowledge shared, and Happy New Year.
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Old 12-28-2016, 05:28 PM   #2
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Great bass fishing! The boat traffic should be less intense on Middle Saranac/Weller Pond which you can access from the the inlet on Rt. 3 rather than the boat launch. 'Not to mention it's not a true summer weekend (yet).
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Old 12-29-2016, 10:26 AM   #3
paul ron
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reservations open in december. thats why they fill up so quickly.


small mouth bass fishing is great almost all summer long.

boat traffic is all summer long but less at tge start n end of the season. im in a kayak n fish the shore lines of the islands so it doesnt make any difference to me. stay further from the day use and launch, less trafic.
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Old 12-29-2016, 02:57 PM   #4
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Buckladd is correct , you can access middle saranac through South Creek right off of route 3 and significantly decrease your paddle distance. There is a parking area there but you'll still have to check in at first pond with the DEC, then go back to south creek and put in.

I can give you some better site specific information tonight. We've stayed or at least lunched at almost all of them.
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Old 12-30-2016, 12:36 PM   #5
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Thanks for the responses. I've decided to take some time off and go Mon-Wed of the week after opening day, which I think should solve the problem of dealing with heavy boat traffic and significantly increases my choice of campsites. The only downside is that I might be down to a party of 1 or 2.

Now it's time to choose a site. Of course having an island to myself is very appealing, but I'm not limiting myself to that. Right now I'm choosing between #'s 22,26,28 (island sites) 48 and 49 (Pope Bay Tongue) on Lower Saranac, and #'s 75 (Bartlett Island), 76, 78, 79 on Middle Saranac. Easy access to Hungry Bay and Weller Pond is a plus for the Middle Saranac sites. And I'm guessing the bass fishing around all those islands on Lower will be superb. If anyone has any insight into these particular sites or recommendations for others it would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 12-30-2016, 02:13 PM   #6
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hey ill be there in sept so leave a few fish for me?

you'll love it!
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Old 12-30-2016, 02:39 PM   #7
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Site # 80 on Middle Saranac Lake was recommended to me by another forum member. Sandy beach, open site, large pines, private and one of the best sites I've camped at in there. You won't go wrong if you book this one.
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Old 12-30-2016, 03:53 PM   #8
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A buddy & I enjoyed site #3 last June on the west side of Eagle Island. Nice & breezy to help keep the bugs away, and beautiful sunsets too... https://youtu.be/1j0dJf9m7_U
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Old 01-04-2017, 02:13 PM   #9
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Thanks for the info everyone!

I'm all booked up for 3 days in June, site #23. Decided to go with a solo island site.

A couple more questions have come up during my research. First, my Sportsman's Connection fishing guide says there are decent numbers of pike and walleye in the lake, as well as limited numbers of brown trout,but the DEC site mentions only large and smallmouth bass, pickerel, perch, and sunfish. Does anyone know which of these is correct? I've heard that walleyes and trout were stocked in years past, but I don't know how recent that may have been or how accurate that info was.

Also, does anyone know if there are trails on Bluff Island leading to the top of the big rock? I've seen pictures of people on top of the rock, but don't know if they hiked up via a trail or climbed the rock face. Thanks again.
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Old 01-04-2017, 02:21 PM   #10
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Actually, come to think of it, I know there are at least some pike in the lake because I watched Justin's video. Still wondering about the walleye and brownies though.

Last edited by madison; 01-04-2017 at 10:28 PM.. Reason: gramatic error
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Old 01-05-2017, 12:46 PM   #11
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To access the trail on Bluff Island you paddle towards the cliff (coming from the put-in at Second Pond) and then head right (north) along the cliff base. You'll come to a bay on your left between what looks like another island and Bluff but it is actually all a part of Bluff island. There is a pull-out and picnic site on this other part of Bluff Island. Anyway, enter this bay and the pull-out and trail start from near the back of this small bay. Follow this trail to the cliff top for a great view! If you like cliff jumping but don't want to kill yourself, head back down your approach trail a bit and a steep trail heads down to a nice jumping ledge which is 15 - 20 feet above deep water. You paddled right under this well used jumping ledge as you paddled along the cliff base. Rumor has it that a horse was killed jumping from the top during the 1920s filming of an episode of "The Perils of Pauline". I've seen kids jump from the top but I've also heard of kids getting badly hurt too...We rock climb this cliff once a summer...
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