With the summer fish in the rear view, it's time to put the focus on those beautiful pesky animals we call Winter Steelhead.
Chad "Dec" Potter and I tried to fish on Thursday, but after 10 minutes of throwing our skagits over sheets of ice, we called it quits. The plan was to try and fish either Saturday or Sunday when the water and weather warmed. I ended up driving down myself to do a bit of water searching. I found some water and even ran into "Dec" who was doing the same. We firmed up our plans for Sunday and it was game on.
We got to the river early on Sunday and were fishing by 8am. After casting for the morning and coming up fishless, we moved spots and warmed up our toes. The water was hanging steady at 35 degrees. Not exactly perfect temps for getting fish to move to a fly.
After moving downriver we hit a couple of great runs that looked promising. One of which, was probably the slickest wading I've ever encountered. I don't think I have ever feared for my life so much in 2-3 foot of water!
The day was winding down and then it happened. My loop went out and raised my rod. The 7133 Burkie I was test driving came under tension and a bit of line tore off the reel. I was actually hooked up! After a few nice runs, the beautiful 33" Hen was landed and released. We estimated her at around 12lbs. It was the prettiest specimen of a steelhead I had ever held.
Jacked with joy I kept casting and hooked up about a half hour later. It was not to be as the fish quickly came to the surface and spit the hook. No worries, I had already had my prize for the day.
Dec Potter and I pictured with the chrome above.