Greatest steelheader ever a Californian?

Bob Triggs

Stop Killing Wild Steelhead!
It is no accident that many older anglers on the west coast still speak of Bill Schaadt in reverent tones. Read about him, See for yourself. Jack Berryman told me that one thing he learned about Bill Schaadt was that "He lived to fish".

Russel Chatham's writings on Bill Schaadt in his "Angler's Coast" are an eye opener to what it takes to catch Chinook and Steelhead on a fly in coastal rivers. Especially on the steep Olympic Peninsula.

As an aside; Another great Russell Chatham essay is entitled "Winter Steelhead", and is in a collection of his works titled "Dark Waters". It is still one of the better winter steelhead fishing technique essays I have ever seen.


Well-Known Member
By what metric does one measure the "best" or "greatest" steelheader? Number of steelhead caught? Caught per unit of time? Does the metric assume all steelhead are equal? Is the metric the most steelhead greater than some threshold weight? If it's about numbers or weight, a useful metric would also include equation parameters to cover number of fish in the river, or average weight of fish in a given river. A 20 pound steelhead caught in CA should carry more "weight" than a 20 pound steelhead caught in northern BC, etc.

Personally I think the variables that add up to greatness are too numerous and well, variable, to meaningfully label anybody the greatest steelheader from anywhere.

BTW, from what I've read about him, Schaadt was a heckuva fisherman.


My family has a summer home by the Trinity River between Weaverville and Lewiston CA. Go north on highway 3 to Callahan CA. Take a left to the South Fork of the Salmon River. It dumps into the Klamath, this is were Bill passed away a few years back. This man lived to fish. I fished by Jimmy Green, my dad fished by Ted Trueblood both of which I truly admire. Having said that Bill may be the most consumed steelheader I have ever seen. He holds a place in my heart like no other. The desire, reverence and admiration that Bill had our Royal fish may never be matched. Don't let yourself be fooled, this man WAS the best advocate of the sport we love. If you ever get to the Klamath go to Salmon Forks, and ask where Bill used to live. It is a special place and one of the best steelhead runs you may ever see.

Tight Lines,


Active Member
Hooking a wild steelhead on the fly is a profound experience then and now. Made even better by the personal satisfaction of exploration and discovery and connection. The pioneers led the way. It's still there if you work for it. And that's just real cool. Go get it while you can.


Active Member
"Behold the Fishermen" Bill Schaadt, Russ Chatham's Anglers Coast.
There are a lot of Bill Schaadt stories floating around. Many seem beyond belief by today's standards. Especially when thay are all laid one one guy. Of all that I have heard, or read, no one has ever disputed any.

Anyone know if Jim Green played football in his high school days? And/or what school he may have attended? When? And, rather than hi-jack this thread, pm me on this.

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