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Fly Fishing For Pacific Steelhead
by Alan Snider
Many avid Steelhead anglers will tell you that fly fishing for steelhead is frustrating and
you often go home without a single bite. Steelhead make hard, fast runs often stripping
your reel down to the backing, and also can put on acrobatic displays that will get any
anglers heart beating faster. This is what makes them the ultimate fly fishing experience.
Steelhead are actually Rainbow Trout that grow fast in the waters of the Pacific Ocean.
They return to the coastal rivers each year to spawn with both summer and fall runs, but
most of the fly fishing is done in the winter.
The anglers that pursue the steelhead during the winter months are truly die-hard
anglers. You can cast all day long in freezing temperatures waiting on one bite, but if you
are lucky or good enough to get that bite, it is sheer excitement from then on.
The most common technique for steelhead is to cast downstream because most bites
occur at the end of the swing. You can use both floating fly lines and sinking tip lines, but
at times, sinking fly lines are used. It all depends on the fly, the river you are fishing and
the time of year. Nymphing for steelhead has mostly developed in the last few years and
some anglers still refuse to use them, but they work.
You need to time your trip to coincide with the migration of the fish, because they are
not always in the river. Information is available on this website for about all the west
coast streams in the nation.
Just remember that if you are not patient you might never get to the point to call
yourself a steelhead angler because you are not going to catch a steelhead every few
casts. You may get a strike almost immediately and then could be days before the next
strike. It may not have anything to do with your technique or that could be the whole
problem. Steelhead anglers have argued for years over the flies and techniques and will
probably always do so. This is probably one of the things that makes steelhead fishing
such an exciting sport.
Perfect Fly can supply you with all you need in the way of rods, reels, backing, line and
flies. Please visit our online store at www.perfectflystore.com or give us a call at
1-800-594-4726 for help.