Spey Rods? Steelhead?

Bluegill kid

I may be young but I can catch fish
I have just recently started thinking about steelhead. my mom thinks that I should look into it a little since the east fork is 2 minutes away from my home. now I have heard of people using spey rods on steelhead but I was just woundering if a good 7 weight would do for them.
What is so special about a spey rod?
You have some great steelheading in your neck of the woods. However the EFL is not a good river to fish this time of the year due to low water flows. Your best bet is the Lower NFL, Kalama and Washougal Rivers. During the spring and again in the Fall steelheading on the EFL can be good. In fact it is one of the best winter runs in your area. For summer runs, a seven weight will be fine.
In regards to spey rods, basicially they allow you to cast farther and cover more water. Steelhead are not great bitters and not always aggressice to the fly, so the more water your cover efficiently the better. You also have better line control when doing the traditional down and across swing. I would recommend getting the single hander down and the techniques invovled with swinging flies before tempting the two handed rod.

o mykiss

Active Member
Bluegill, do not bother getting a spey rod at this point. A 7 weight single hander will be just fine. At least wait to see if you have any passion for steelheading before you buy a spey rod (and inevitably, the rod and line to go with it). Even a cheap one is a significant investment and casting a spey rod is no cinch, so why drop the dough and endure the frustration of learning to cast one until you know steelheading is for you and that you just gotta have one to become a more effective steelheader. If you are new to steelheading, there is a lot to learn already without having to figure out how to cast and fish a spey rod.
Even though i have a spey rod and yeah they cover a lot of water, but if you want to catch a lot of steelhead stick with nymphing.:thumb: If you don't believe check out ibns pics and ask him what his perfered method is. The numbers dont lie, nymphing is way more effective but is just not quite the same as swinging the big stick for them.


Active Member
Dido to both replies. iagree See if you like the dark side first, and then master dimensions of the swing. Many people will tell you its simple (swinging), but to develop "the touch" and become productive, you have to spend time on water doing it wrong until you discover that you are doing it right. have fun and don't expect immidiate gratification.:thumb:

Bluegill kid

I may be young but I can catch fish
Thanks a bunch guys!!
I am going to wait a while before I get into the whole spey and swing and all that stuff
sounds a little complicated to me
I think that I am going to look into the nymphing method
What patterns worked for you?
Really you could actaully use the spey rod to nymph. It most cases a spey rod would be great is great. It is easy to mend line and you have better line control overall. When nymphing for steel the two main keys are that you keep your flies down and that you maintain a drag free float for as long as possible. For nymphs just stick with egg patterns. You can tie glue eggs, yarn eggs, or beads all work. Some mess around with actual nymph patterns but i personally believe that a bunch of eggs in different colors and sizes is all you need. Check my photo gallery and you'll see the egg boxes i cary with me.
There is an article on the main page written by two dorks who sometimes fish for steelhead with nymphs. It is a good read with some nice patterns.


Active Member
o mykiss said:
Bluegill, do not bother getting a spey rod at this point. A 7 weight single hander will be just fine.

iagree actually a seven weight will cover most of your needs (med/large trout, summer steelhead, small/medium salmon, SM/LM Bass and a variety of other fresh/saltwater fish...good all around do everything type rod.

Latest posts