What's your record for not catching a steelhead?

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Tracy Lauricella, Dec 26, 2012.

  1. Tracy Lauricella

    Tracy Lauricella Active Member

    As of today, December 26, 2012, I have 171.5 hours logged in my fishing log attempting to catch a steelhead with no success. There's probably a few trips that I missed getting into my log too, but I've got times/dates for 171.5 hours' worth.

    What's your record? Can anyone beat that?
  2. Rob Allen

    Rob Allen Active Member

    I don't keep a log and don't concern myself much with how many fish i catch but I do know that 2012 was the first year since 1985 that I have not caught a steelhead on a fly and I only hooked 1.

    truth be known i do not fly fish for steelhead that much anymore because most places where there are actually some fish are far too crowded to be enjoyable. and for winter fish I use bait because my only goal is to rid my favorite little mixed stock fishery of as many hatchery brats as possible and you cannot do that with a fly. in short bait fishing = conservation.

    I know one year on the East Lewis river I fished 30 consecutive days in Mid December- mid January, well the consecutive days that the river was fishable and did not touch a fish inspite of bait fishermen catching them right and left.
  3. Matthew Gulbranson

    Matthew Gulbranson Resident Swinger

    Rob - that's brutal! I've got a friend who is working on 5 years without a fish now. I'm hoping to help change that tomorrow somewhere near forks...
  4. JesseC

    JesseC Active Member


    How the hell are you guys still putting on the waders after that kind of drought?! My heart is going out to ya!
    Josh P likes this.
  5. Klickrolf

    Klickrolf Active Member

    Tracy, keep keeping your log! Think Lakewood is somewhere near the Seattle conflagration, not sure and don't care enough to check a map. My guess is you're fishing water that's not holding many steelhead. Steelhead are easy to catch if you're casting to them. Cover water and keep your log! Log everything you can think to log. 20 years from now you'll know more about catching steelhead than most of us.

    Been steelheading for a good while now and wish so much that I'd kept a log. Memories are good but pinning them down is better, much better!
  6. Tracy Lauricella

    Tracy Lauricella Active Member

    I'm mostly fishing the Snoqualmie, and I know there are Steelhead in the system when I'm there. (I've been good luck for those that fish near me. ;) ) I live in Lakewood (south of Tacoma) but since I work in Redmond, it's not too bad to nip off to the river and fish the first couple of hours after sunrise before going in to the office. I also like to drift it on Saturdays, and will typically drift from Fall City to the Neal road takeout.

    I was out on the river for 3 hours this morning, from 8 am to 11 am, swinging a fly on my Spey rod. No luck, but it was nice out there this morning.

    Snoqualmie is not as productive as some other rivers, but it's conveniently located for me. Depending on where I am fishing, who I am with, and how much time I have will determine my fishing method. I'll use the Spey rod, single hander, or fish a variety of gear/bait options.

    I've fished the Skykomish as well, usually near Sultan, though I have done so much less often than the Snoqualmie.
  7. Klickrolf

    Klickrolf Active Member

  8. Klickrolf

    Klickrolf Active Member

    Keep that up and you'll eventually catch a steelhead if they're in your vicinity. The more water you cover the better your chances. Keep adding data to your log.
  9. NewTyer1

    NewTyer1 Banned or Parked

    50 years and still counting
  10. Phil Fravel

    Phil Fravel Friendly

    I catch winter fish somewhat regularly now. BUT I have one river I just cant seem to land anything out of. The Cowlets. In one way it is funny, I believe it has the largest returns in the state. And there are time of the year when it is one of the only rivers within a reasonable driving distance that will have fish in it. I actually like fishing the river. I've used guides along with friends who have taken me allover the river. I think it has been 6 years now without a fish to hand.

    On a better note I took my Son out yesterday he just turned 16 and has been casting a spey rod for 3 years now. He hooked into his first Steelhead yesterday. It was a thrill, though it only lasted for 10 to 15 seconds. Perhaps the New year he will get his first to hand along with one for me at the Cow.
  11. Dorylf

    Dorylf Oregon Member

    I went four years before catching my first, and that was on gear. I catch more now, but in winter I'll cheat and use lead. So I'm not a purist all the time.*


    * Ha! A Yogi-ism.
  12. zen leecher aka bill w

    zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    Since 1974. But it's still a good excuse to get out.
  13. Jeff Sawyer

    Jeff Sawyer Active Member

    I fished hard (swinging only) for three years before I caught my first one. Then when I finally did catch one, it was an ugly little rebright hatchery hen; so ugly I didn't even bother with a picture. I guess your first can't always be pretty.
  14. Josh P

    Josh P Member

    My heart goes out to all of you... I have had my dry spells but those are some sad stories. Keep at it!
  15. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member


    It took me a year and a half to catch my first one, trying to figure it out on my own. Keep at it. The Snoqualmie got a good plant, same as the Sky I think. So there should be a lot of fish in the relatively short stretch of good holding water on the Snoq. Good luck.

  16. rmflyrods

    rmflyrods Member

    Maybe we should create a match-making service. Pair up someone with a dry spell with someone doing well. Imagine the karma getting someone onto a fish that is having trouble! :)
  17. Charles Sullivan

    Charles Sullivan dreaming through the come down

    That's a lot of time but certainly not unprecidented if you are fishing PS winter populations mostly. I went a few years not catching winter fish. I kept a journal for a while. I actually started catching after I stopped the journal. It wasn't the reason why. These reasons were.

    1.) Run timing- I saved my time up to hit rivers at the prime time rather than any time.
    2.) Wild fish- Winter wild fish are biters. When they are around you should fish- see number 1
    3.) I learned the right water to fish. Fly water and gear water isn't always the same.
    4.) I finally caught one. It seemed to open the faucet. I caught 2 more that week. Of couse, I was fishing when the fish were there. They were wild fish and I was fishing good water.

    Best of luck.

    Go Sox,
  18. ak_powder_monkey

    ak_powder_monkey Proud to Be Alaskan

    I went from 2007 to 2010 without touching a fish. Hooked one in that time.
  19. Derek Young

    Derek Young 2011 Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide Of The Year

    I tried talking you into floating above where we met for the shuttle... keep at it! ;)

  20. skyrise

    skyrise Active Member

    cant remember the last time i landed one with the bug rod. at least 5-6 years ?
    lost 2 good fish on spoons this summer though. best hit and run i have had in many years.
    with the current pis poor returns and hatch turds, i just don't get very up for it. mostly i go to get out of the house in the winter.