Hooks, rust, and steelhead


Active Member
Anyone think a steelhead will spit out a hook faster if it has some rust on it?

Which would provide less time to detect the bite and set the hook.

And could argue for the merits of tube flies and new hooks each trip out.

I think that if a steelhead were to know that they had a hook in their mouth, they would spit it regardless of texture. A hook is a hook. The sharpness however, will play a role in whether or not said fish is hooked. If the tip is rusty, it can cause it to slid across normal entry points. I think that the main worry with fishing a rusty hook would be that it could break.


Well-Known Member
Since steelhead can't spit, I don't worry about that aspect. As a scavenger of hooks and lures off of gravel bars and areas I wade, I check first for rust and don't recycle rusty hooks. Beyond that it appears you are over-thinking what happens when a steelhead grabs a fly.



Active Member
if steelhead could "spit flies" the rusty ones would be harder to spit due to the corroded surface making them stickier. Over time most hooks do come out. Non-rusting hooks could be an exception.

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