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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 09:35 AM Thread Starter
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NorCal Steelheading

I want to fish Northern California. I am specifically interested in fishing the Eel and/or the Smith. My main concerns revolve around timing. I am planning on late January, but my dates are open.

Any help would really be appreciated.

SRN
I am the Mighty Northern Night...In my Folktale Form -Ted Hughes
www.steelheadhunter.net

Last edited by wintershope; 11-23-2008 at 09:53 PM.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-23-2008, 05:16 PM
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Your timing *could* be great. What I mean is that both rivers mentioned should have good numbers of fish in them in late jan./ however the weather will be the wild card. Storm systems pass through that time of the year and you gotta hit it between storms when the river has sufficient time to drop back into fishable clarity and flow. Obviously, some clear more quickly than others, so you should be able to find something fishable, but there is no guaranty.
Good luck-I hope your timing is spot on and look forward to a report on how it goes.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-28-2008, 10:59 AM
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eel and smith

Eel takes forever to clear, Smith clears up as fast as anything on the coast. Eel is really temper mental, actually closed right now for low flow, but one good rain and it will open, but be likely unfishable for weeks. Smith gets lots of pressure because of this, and they have notoriously good runs, except for last year, it sucked.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2008, 03:09 AM
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If it's your first time a guide will seriously up your chances of hooking a fish. Timing is absolutely everything and a guide will put you on the river with the best conditions when you are there. It takes a lot of time to figure out which rivers fish at whcih flows and how long they take to clear etc.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2008, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for your responses.

I am really open to any of the rivers in the area. I would like to stay in California, but if I need to head north when the time comes, so be it. Is there a shop or shops that will be good contacts for preparing for this trip. Also the names of a few guides who you think highly of would be great. This trip will be done on a shoe-string, but I would hate to miss a good opportunity becasue I was too stingy. I am also interested in local patterns, etc.

I understand that the Eel is not known currently as the great river that it once was, but I hear it is beautiful, and I would bet that an Eel river steelhead hookup would last a life time in memory. Of course if the fish aren't there, I don't want to be there without them.

Additionally, I have locked in my flights, 7 days starting Jan. 21st

SRN
I am the Mighty Northern Night...In my Folktale Form -Ted Hughes
www.steelheadhunter.net
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2008, 08:21 PM
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norcal coast

Call Kiene's Fly Shop in Sacramento, some old timers work there who know a thing or two about the Eel. Ask for Chuck or Bill. Jason Hartwick is guiding the coast this winter. His website is steelheadonthespey.com.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2008, 03:17 PM
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Google John Klar

John Klar has been around the block a time or two and knows the "Lost Coast" well. He also knows a thing or two about two hand rods. The last I fished with him, he said his new years resolution was to be the first to catch a winter steelhead on the Smith,,,on New Years day!

I fish because the voices inside my head tell me to.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2008, 06:07 PM
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Pray for rain!

Amen.

"Let us cross the river and rest under the shade of the trees" T.J. Jackson
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