Idiot's guide to Steelhead on the Methow I present two methods which enabled me to hook-up with two good steelies on the Methow. Method #1. "Almost there, almost there," I said under my breath as I got about 2/3rds of the way across the Methow. I was trying to cross upstream of a pool so that I could fish its tailout from the deeper side. Even though the water was both faster and deeper than it looked, I couldn't bring myself to turn around and walk to the bridge, that would take all of 5 minutes! With about 15 feet to go, I lunged out into the deepest part of the river. The point of no return had been crossed. Immediately a branch came out of nowhere and caught my boot but I found I could still move by dragging my leg behind me. The current was pushing me toward the pool and I redoubled my efforts to drag myself and the branch across. My arms were flailing around like a little girl running. Somehow the river got even DEEPER and I was about to yell out when the branch feel free and suddenly I was at the far side. Whew! This is when I noticed that something was pulling on my line, which had been dragging through the water about 30 feet downstream of me. I put tension on the rod and was rewarded with a huge splash. I had a steelhead on!!! I yelled out to my buddy Brent, who was fishing downstream and he looked up in time to see the fish splash again. The fish seemed to get its wits about it and began to swim slowly but determinedly upstream toward me as if to kick my ass. As he passed me I tried to pull on the line (I don't really know what to do in these situations). The fish would not budge -- he must have been HUGE. All of a sudden he did a crazy ivan, rising to the surface, flipping out his tail and then diving back into the current. My green butt skunk came flying back at me. Fish gone. So if you haven't tried limping across a fast, deep water and flailing your arms around like an idiot... well, apparently it works. Method #2. Downsteam two pools later, I approached the tailout in a much more stealthy fashion. I had swapped my green butt skunk and sinktip for a full floating line and size 6 October Caddis. I cast to the far side of the tailout and skated the fly about halfway across it. A dark brown shape flipped up to grab the fly with a meaty splash. Fish on!!! Again, the fish settled down and slowly came toward me. This was shallower water and a smaller fish -- perhaps 25". The fact that he was on my line added to his awesome beauty. He looked just like a giant trout! Bright red color with a silverly strip down each side. Big eyes and a triangular face. He pulled away from me and my caddis came flying back to me with its hook bent open. Doh. Well there you go. I have yet to actually land a steelhead on my 8wt but that day I got three chances and blew them all (the third fish broke off my tippet).