Aux Rochers River
The Aux Rochers River flows on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River, 62 kilometers west of Sept-Îles and 167 kilometers east of the city of Baie-Comeau. The river’s limited access sector is very easy to get around and runs entirely through the Port-Cartier-Sept-Îles Wildlife Reserve and the town of Port-Cartier, before entering the St. Lawrence River.
The Aux Rochers River did not always provide such good habitat and conditions for salmon to thrive in, who only used to be able to swim 8 km up the river. In 1921, the building of a dam confined the species to just one kilometer up the river, and the river was also used for log driving from 1922 to 1963. As a result, salmon sport fishing had to be closed in 1971. Efforts to restore the resource were pursued thereafter through stocking programs, and by trapping and hauling the fish further upstream. As a result, the fishery reopened in 1982.
Since then, these efforts have been ongoing, and the number of returning salmon has increased significantly to nearly 1,000 large salmon every year. The Association de protection de la rivière aux Rochers manages sport fishing on the river. The water of the Aux Rochers River is cold, ranging between 14 and 19 degrees, and has a slightly brownish color. The river gushes over a rocky river bottom at an average flow rate of 100 cubic meters per second. There are five different sectors: one open access sector, one with limited access and three public access sectors, combining for a total of 56 pools. You will only be wade fishing on the Aux Rochers.
Note: there is a site designated for salmon observation where you can see how the fish actually make it up the river using the two-way trap and haul system, and where you can admire the waterfalls.