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Coldwater Fly Fishing Trout, Salmon, Steelhead, etc...

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Old 01-04-2012, 03:45 PM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

I started fishing for "steelhead" or great lakes rainbow trout on Georgian Bay (Lake Huron) in Ontario. These are the fish that started me on fly fishing and there is a place deep in my heart for them.

After moving to BC I have been lucky enough to fish for summer steelhead in the river canyons of Vancouver Island and winter steelhead on the Dean, Bulkley and countless other west coast rivers. These fish are a hallmark of true wilderness and deserve the respect and admiration they get.
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Old 01-04-2012, 05:44 PM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

It's a sickness. Started for me approx 1975. If you're swinging flies on coastal rivers, then it's "the take" which can be heartstopping....exactly as Bigfly described. You can be into your backing with a stoutish rod and reel in, uh, well, way faster than you'd believe until it happens to you...

We catch more in the west bobbicating than swinging. You surrender the take for more fish and the fight that comes with them.

It's all of the above...they are just majestic fish....more so for me than even silver salmon, which are an absolute hoot to catch, but present little challenge, most times...

Great question...-Mike
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Old 01-04-2012, 11:58 PM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

I'm happy to see this thread back on the board. All you folks back east have March to look forward to in those Great Lakes rivers and creeks. March was always the most productive time for me whether I was fishing Ontario of Erie tributaries.

It has been a while since I have caught a fish that I knew was a true steelhead. Alaska, at least my range of Alaska is not the steelhead capital by any stretch of the imagination. However if you start at ice out and resign yourself to the fact that you may indeed spend several days floating a river and not even see a fish you might just run right into some.

Our trout are all rainbow trout, we have no browns and all of the rivers I fish freeze up real hard every winter. This tends to make all of our rainbows quite migratory in their life cycle. When spring arrives and the trout return you have no way to know where that fish you've landed has spent the past 5 months or so. If you are fortunate and you catch a really big fish with a healthy girth you almost expect it has came from the Inlet. By that I mean that they were in the salt water over the winter. It's because of this that if I happen to find some large rainbow early in the season I tend to think of them as steelhead and they are worth going bonkers over
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Old 01-10-2012, 10:56 AM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

Steelhead just get into your blood...When you FINALLY hook that first one, no matter where; it's electric! You get that first run and as Jim said, it's hard to believe how fast they can take you into your backing...

Fishing the different seasons, and chasing fresh Steel is addictive...Hi my name is Dan, and I'm hooked....

Dan
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:54 AM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

It gets in your bones somehow. Such a gorgeous fish and so difficult to bring to hand by fly. The bait and gear guys have an easier time of it, certainly.

I live within a 45 minute drive of some of the best steelhead fishing on the west coast of the US. It is amazing to see them power their way back up to their natal waters after having traveled so many miles at see and back inland. Just standing on a rock, looking down into the water watching them is mesmerizing.

The beauty of the surroundings, the amazing ability of the fish and its life cycle all combine to create an obsession. I'm not as obsessed as others, but the bug has me for sure.
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:26 PM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

The ones I fish are b- run, they swim 700 miles through 6 dams from the Pacific ocean, and are amazing creatures. I've landed maybee 25 in 5 years fishing them. I use a 10ft #7 b2x, and the river I fish is smaller 400cfs. When you stick one of these beasts they fight for 1/2 an hour, strip line, jump, do amazing things and just pull like mad. I've caught thousands of big trout and steelhead are a different animal. They kick butt!! once you hook a couple you are hooked!!!
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:42 PM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

majestic fish
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Old 01-23-2012, 01:09 AM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigfly View Post
Andy Burk helped me learn some steel patterns this winter. One day he leaned over my shoulder and quietly counseled me how to approach it.
He said, "Tye with respect for the fish".
It seemed to help.....

Jim
Gilbert Gottfried told me to tye with a joke for the fish. They're not as wary when they are laughing.
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:25 PM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

i live a hour from the big rivers of the pacific northwest. i have been steelheading for two years now. first year i got skunked not even a bite. but i was still learning. this year had a couple bites hooked in to one ended up breaking my 20lbs leader with in a few minutes. my buddy could see the shadow of it and said it was huge. i would rather be out on the river no matter the weather than be a work or dealing with my kids!
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:38 AM
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Default Re: What is it about Steelheads....

Quote:
Originally Posted by lthrnk03 View Post
that everyone goes bonkers over. I know nothing about the species what so ever. Its it the elusiveness, the fight?
Hook one - you'll know!

Pocono
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