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Old 04-19-2013, 10:56 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Pennsylvania
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Default Setting the hook for steelhead vs trout?

I just watched a video on steelhead fishing (I'm planning on buying an 8 wt sometime and fishing for some steelies this fall on a lake michigan trib this fall) and one piece of advice in the video really surprised me. The man, John Hazel, essentially stated that you shouldn't set the hook immediately after the hit (while skating flies). Instead, he said you should let the fish turn and take a couple feet of line out before setting the hook.

Based on my brook/brown/bow trout fishing, this is not correct. I always thought you should set the hook as soon as the hit because if waiting either:
a) The fish spits the fly out or
b) The fish swallows the fly and its really difficult to unhook from the stomach

Why would you run the risk of letting the fish possibly swallow the fly whole straight to the stomach when you could just hook right inside the mouth? I don't know if John Hazel is really famous for fishing steelhead but his casting in the video was pretty dang good, so I'm not really doubting that his advice is correct, just wondering why and if this also applies to fishing for brookies/browns/bows.
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