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Discussion Starter #1
I guess I upset a fly fisherman by joking around and saying "bobbers are training wheels". Just a joke between a few buds. Anyway, I caught my first steelhead fishing with my new SpeyCo reel and posted a hero shot. I was super stoked. I was just recording my casting for self critiquing purposes and happened to hook into a very nice buck.
This person had made a comment that its because spey fishermen can't mend and that my fish isn't a steelhead..its a rainbow. Now, I've done my research and come to the conclusion that they in fact are steelhead because of the genetics and the migration from the ocean and great lakes is exactly the same behavior. Aside from coming from salt water, they're exactly the same in every way.

I know many of you are from the PNW, so I'm curious what you all think. Most of what I hear is from the west coast. What makes my steelhead not a steelhead?



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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys. Sorry for the dead horse beating. I was just curious if I was missing something because I've heard it several times.
 

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Here we go again!
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If it wasn't an Atlantic Salmon caught on a dry fly using a split cane rod, silk line and English reel in a Scottish river whilst Her Majesty dangled her toes in the waters upstream watching, it was merely a rough fish of dubious nature you caught. And most probably by mistake, and with a good deal of embarrasment on the fishes part.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
If it wasn't an Atlantic Salmon caught on a dry fly using a split cane rod, silk line and English reel in a Scottish river whilst Her Majesty dangled her toes in the waters upstream watching, it was merely a rough fish of dubious nature you caught. And most probably by mistake, and with a good deal of embarrasment on the fishes part.
Brilliant :grin2:
 

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Bamboo Rod Maker
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They were called steelhead when I caught my first one in the Knife River in Minnesota in 1966 and they were called steelhead when I caught the last one from the PM in Michigan.
After fifty years of chasing steelhead and calling them steelhead this old geezer is not about to call them anything else but "steelhead".

Jerry
 

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Now, I've done my research and come to the conclusion that they in fact are steelhead because of the genetics and the migration from the ocean and great lakes is exactly the same behavior.
Dead horse beating is what the internet is all about!

It is even more interesting than that - both have basically the same genes, but the expression of the genes can get turned on and off. So Rainbows can get turned into Steelhead, and Steelhead into Rainbows due to external conditions. This is happening partially when they come back from the ocean/great lake and start changing color. Those ocean-going guys are a lot more buff too, but the rest of the difference is between their ...umm ... ears, whether gene-switched or no - living in an ocean seems to require a lot more aggression. Wouldn't it be cool if every time we were in a room of attractive women we slowly started to change into a more handsome version of ourselves! That would be an awesome super power.

Next time just tell the guy that you can actually mend BETTER since your rod is longer - size matters! ;-)
 

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I don't understand what mending has to do with whether a fish is a steelhead or not, plus a spey rod is a mending machine. Whatever.

I grew up chasing steelhead in Wisconsin and Minnesota for 15 years, then moved to Oregon for the next 20 to pursue steelhead. I feel that great lakes fish are definitely steelhead, they are genetically from west coast steelhead stock, so I consider them steelhead. I don't hear arguments about whether striped bass in fresh water lakes are or aren't striped bass, so why do we worry about steelhead?

I will say that ocean and great lakes fish are quite different on the end of the line, but that's a topic for another time.
 

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They call them strike indicators, please!!!!

It's a damn bobber, call them what they are.

I'm from Michigan and they are steelhead, enjoy the ride.

KC
 

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It's just semantics. Respect the fish and cherish the fishing. We should fish for ourselves and not for the accolades of others.










(But technically, a cucumber is still a cucumber until you add salt...only then does it become a majestic pickle!) Cue outrage...
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I don't understand what mending has to do with whether a fish is a steelhead or not, plus a spey rod is a mending machine. Whatever.
I think his feelings were just hurt. He had no other comebacks. I can't spey the river without mending, so I have no idea either. I'm also mending 600gr + intermediate and casting zinc tips and big chunks of meat :)
 
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