Dah, thanks for asking.....I was wondering the same thing.
As much as I love steelhead, all the while I cast for them I'm thinking of pike! Steelhead are great, but the feelings they evoke in Zen are evoked in me by pike (and musky). Gimme one pike over 10 steelhead any day.
But yeah, steelhead are great. Don't get me wrong. :thumb:
In the Snake River Basin, steelhead are divided into A-run and B-run classifications. These two variations are characterized by differences in location of spawning, size at age, ocean age composition, and time of migration into fresh water. B-run fish are believed to spawn primarily in the Clearwater River, South Fork of the Salmon River and Middle Fork of the Salmon River, while A-run fish are found primarily in the lower Clearwater River, upper Salmon River, lower Salmon River, Grande Ronde River, Imnaha River and tributaries of the Snake River below Hells Canyon Dam. While A-run steelhead are also found throughout the inland Columbia River basin, B-run steelhead are believed to be found only in the Snake River drainage. B-run steelhead enter fresh water later than A-run steelhead, are typically larger at age (likely because of the additional time they spend feeding in the ocean before migrating into fresh water), and the annual run typically has a higher proportion of fish that have spent two years at sea. there are, of course exception to this--where you have B-run strays that enter the Ronde, as well as the D, and other columbia watersheds.
Right on with the post. Steelhead are amazing animals, they have extremely diverse lifehistories, undertake the longest migrations at sea, and are extremely badass in every way. If you have 43 days of break, you ought to head over to the wet side and fish for some chrome fish. Coast perhaps? Also, glad you finally came around on the nymphing thing
I got out Saturday for a solo foray and achieved approximately my 35th consecutive skunking since I started chasing steelhead in fall '06. Is there some special milestone at 46?
This last one barely counts, though, since I was only on the river for 45 minutes before I accidentally dropped my favorite body in the 35-degree water. By the time I swam out the bottom end of a surprisingly deep and frustratingly slow-moving pool 60-70 seconds later, I knew the day was over for me.
Does anyone else understand that steelhead are the last best thing?
Here are a few things my fellow friends and I have agreed on, although Mark was slipping on number one:
-We would rather catch a wild b-run on the swing than sleep with an SI swimsuit model. However we would rather sleep with an SI swimsuit model than catch any hatchery fish.
-Steelhead are the best animal in the world.
-A 5 day trip across 4 states and 2,000 miles is worth it if you end up happy. Steelhead brings happy, even without the catching. Watching your buddy throw up in his new tent after stealing all the wine makes up for fish lost.
-We would rather get skunked 46 times fishing for steelhead than catch 46 trout in one day. We just want one pull.
-Nymphing is really, totally, gay. But, we still do it. Does this make us gay? We're not sure but it's hard to swing our local stuff.
-Beads work on the swing and the dead drift, lady carolines only work with split shot.
-Every day fishing for fish other than steelhead is a day one could be fishing for steelhead.
-A wild steelhead is more important to us than almost anything, except Steelie Mike, he is our dad.
In 30 years, smallmouth bass will be the new steelhead.
Well shit it finally came out. A week of studying for finals and I've just got one more (the easiest one) left. I'll be on the water off and on, hopefully mostly on, for the next 43 days until spring semester starts up. See you river left.