I do agree that one of the most important things is to focus on YOUR water, not the water you see everyone else on. By all means I don't enjoy hanging out around the hatchery, but I live so close to the cascade that I can't justify not going there frequently if the skagits up like it will be all winter.
I have picked three rivers, and maybe a dozen runs that I am going to beat to death for the season, solely based on the fact that there SHOULD be at least a few fish at some point.
My biggest glimmer of hope is that by the time I hook another wild steelhead, I may also be able to hook a big king...
Nice read! I am newer than newb. I live on the east coast, and recently made my first steel trip this fall to a couple of small Lake Ontario tributaries...and I'm HOOKED! I am hooked so bad that I am considering moving out west. I'm in the navy, so we are considering Bremerton. However, some of this read is a bit discouraging, in reference to the lack of fish. Is it really that bad? We are experiencing a terrible decline in striped bass out here, but I am still catching plenty of fish. Just have to know where to go and when to be there.