Steelhead are a unique species of fish since they migrate from the Pacific Ocean or Great Lakes to spawn in their natal stream. With an amazing sense of smell they use to navigate up river, steelhead will devour baits that smell like food source while rejecting others with offensive odors.
Add Scent for More Strikes
Since steelhead have a finely tuned sense of smell, it pays to have a bait that pleases the nostrils of these hard fighting game fish. Add a dab of Mike's Lunker Lotion in the Shrimp, Anise or Steelhead formulas to your bait. This will leave a scent trail on each drift that will trigger a steelhead to bite. Be sure to rub a little of this scent on your fingers as well; this will aid in masking any offensive smells.
Go Bright in Dirty Water
Rain and snow-melt will raise rivers turning them off color. While this is a trigger for steelhead to migrate upstream, it limits their vision. Be sure to use brighter presentations, like fluorescent colored Spin n Glo's to get the steelheads attention. Add some fresh bait behind this bright attractor and hang on tight as steelhead tend to strike this combo vigorously.
Steelhead fishing is a physically demanding sport. Arriving to the river at pre-dawn hours to get the prime pool, followed by hours of casting and hiking can take a toll on an anglers energy which leads to a lack on concentration. Carry plenty of packable snacks like protein bars, mixed nuts and fruit slices to keep energy levels up throughout the day. There is nothing worse than driving for hours to get to the stream and miss the bite due to a lack of concentration.
Article Written By Brian M. Kelly
Brian M. Kelly has been freelance writing since 2003. His work has been published in respected outdoor magazines such as Outdoor Life, Great Lakes Angler and Salmon Trout Steelheader. He holds an associate's degree in automated machine design from Macomb College.