Two first in one day. Bull and Steel

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Rosetime, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. Really wanted to stay home and watch the games but my buddy had an open spot on a float and I couldn't resist.

    On the "S" river at 8 and it was plenty chilly. Had some trouble loosening up but after a little while I was bombing my 7wt two hander. At our third stop I got of the raft and walked about 25 feet. A strips and a flick to get the sink tip out and a second to get half the shooting head going and pow. My first bull trout. Around 22" and strong but very thin and snake like. Maybe a post spawner? Couple minutes later with with a pic and wiggle it shot back towards the feeder creek it may have just come from.

    Two stops later we were well into the run. My buddy was first through and was a hundred or so feet below me. I was knee deep river right and had about seventy five feet of line out. Was almost to the hang down when BAM! Felt like I hooked a Buick. Fish gave two solid tails slaps not more then a rod and a half away from my friend who thought Moby was coming after him. Then something strange happened. The fish went Chinook on me. Went deeper into the river and just started head shaking and rolling. Not the arial show that I have experienced a couple times before on the single handful of steelhead I have hooked and lost, but more of the down and dirty slugfest of a fish still in the ocean. Our guide Andrew though at first it may be a big Bull Trout due to way it fought. A couple minutes later he saw the flash of chrome and hustled back to the raft for the net. Felt like a addition half hour but more likely over the next five minutes we see-sawed from sink tip to running line a dozen times as the fish ran. Each time we swapped line my confidence wavered and I thought at any second I would be left slack lined, hands on my knees, wondering what happened. I asked Andrew what to do different and he said the fish runs the show and to keep doing what I was doing. I kept waiting for the fish to go ballistic but a few see-saws later and it was close enough to net. The second it was netted the small intruder ish fly I tied popped out. I let out a loud whoop and was super excited with the estimated 12-13lb, 32 3/4" hatchery hen. I saved the fly and it will have a place at my tying table forever.

    Big thanks to my friend Jeff for the invite and a huge shout out to Andrew of The Avid Angler for his job on the sticks and the river knowledge he shared.

    Attached Files:

  2. Heck yeah man, sweet!!!!

    Most of the Bullies I've ever caught were long, slim and snakey.
    Rosetime likes this.
  3. Congratulations! That's a beaut! Sometimes these winter run like to dog, rather than jump. Not a fan of the jump though, you'll lose more fish that way.
    Rosetime likes this.
  4. Awesome post! My day is coming!
    Rosetime likes this.
  5. I think I'd rather have an epic aerial show in my memory than a picture of a hatchery brat and a couple fillets, but I guess that's just me.
    I can imagine you "guiding" somebody down some river that doesn't need guiding, saying something like "damn wild steelhead jump to much, we need some weaker hatchery stock in the mix so we can put some meat in the cooler.

    Rosetime, nice trip report, congrats on a great day on the river and thanks for sharing.
    Teenage Entomologist and McNasty like this.
  6. Fear the beard! If you were fishing with Andrew, then you were in good hands. Congrats on the fish! (Both of them, that is.)

    Rosetime likes this.
  7. Nice fish man! Nothing wrong with that hatch-tard. I've always been under the assumption that most of the sea-run bulls that are caught this time of year are kelts, meaning they have already spawned and are on the way down, thats why they are pretty thin generally.
    Rosetime likes this.
  8. THAT is awesome! Congrats! Feels pretty cool, huh?
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  9. Awesome congrats...
    Rosetime likes this.
  10. Grillos is getting a very impressive beard
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  11. Solid work. Congrats.
    Rosetime likes this.
  12. That is one pretty fish that must of gave a hell of a fight!
    Rosetime likes this.
  13. Great Job!
    I have only landed two steel, both summers. Really want to hook (and land) a winter, but i'm young and have time to do so.
    I always semi hate the fly popping in the net, but at the same time it just means you played the fish correctly, and its easier to unhook.

    That being said I prefer hooking in the top of the mouth, the boney characteristic helps keep the fly in if you lose tension.
    Rosetime likes this.
  14. Congratulations. I am happy for you!
    Rosetime likes this.
  15. [quot ]Nice me hope for the Sky. I've only caught Bullies there. Some with big shoulders! Good on you!
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