One of the state’s earliest dams was built on Salmon Falls Creek in 1910. The waters behind the dam filled in the desert canyon near the Idaho-Nevada border, creating Salmon Falls Creek Reservoir.
Today, the reservoir is a popular camping and fishing spot. For the last eight years Idaho Walleye Unlimited has held a tournament at this location to help raise money for conservation projects and habitat improvement at the reservoir. Despite its somewhat remote location, anglers from around the country have participated in the tourney.
Salmon Falls Creek Reservoir is one of only three bodies of water in Idaho that hold Walleye. The state record walleye was caught at the reservoir. The fish weighted 16 pounds. Most of the walleye caught in the tournaments are between two and five pounds, but even those fish aren’t easy to catch.
"Old marble eyes as they are sometimes called is a tougher catch than the standard bass or trout. It’s excellent table fare, some people refer to it as freshwater lobster. He’s more or less near the top of the food chain in that they are a toothy predator and because of that getting them to get on your line can be a little bit more of a challenge. A goodly amount of people who do go after them started as an excellent game fish for tableware but it's something they've moved on to as far as the tournaments go...Walleye fishing in the state has increased probably ten fold in the last five years...that kind of pressure can have some detrimental effects on the resource but it's also indicative of the desire that's out there for Walleye."
--Doug Schleis, Walleye Unlimited, Boise Chapter President--
“When you're out there with fifty some boats your concentration is just intense. Your line, if you're running a split shot or bottom bouncer or a plug, just a little tick you’re watching, and you see every little change in your line because it could be a fish taking it...There’s an extreme amount of camaraderie out here, everybody’s a friend out here, that's one of the interesting things about tournament fishing. You can get with 75 or 100 people and everybody knows everybody but if you ask them on the water what they're using they won't tell you anything... This fish is a really interesting fish, they're really picky, you can catch them really fast one day and the next day nothing. They are very voracious and a hardy eater but I guess it's just a match of wits, yours wits against theirs.”
--Mike Chupa, tournament angler--