Winter Steelhead & Browns
   As the waters cool in late fall,, the first of the winter run steelhead will start slipping into the rivers. Many of the early fish are summer run Skamania strain fish that avoided entering the 70f.+ rivers back in July, and have had several extra months of growth out in Lake Michigan.
   The Seeforellen browns, a fast growing strain, will also be coming in to spawn in November and December. As long as water temperatures stay above 36f., these fish will be very aggressive, frequently hitting a fly near the surface.
   Many anglers tend to park in one spot, & never move. As long as fish are moving through the area, there will be some action, but there's a more efficient & more effective approach: casting, letting the fly drift & swing, & then taking a step or two downstream & repeating. Rather than waiting for the fish to come to the angler, this presents the fly to every fish in the run.
This is the classic presentation for Atlantic Salmon.

Seeforellen browns look and fight like Atlantic salmon jay_seeforellen.jpg 26Kb A December "Summer Run". skamania2.jpg 59Kb A 15# male that mistook a black marabou for lunch. skamania1.jpg 42Kb
L. Michigan brown trout. tyler_brown2.jpg 57Kb Swinging a wet fly by stepping downstream between casts. animated wet fly presentation 9Kb Photo by Joe Solakian >explore.jpg 35Kb

Winter/Spring- Cohos, Trout, & Steelhead
   Through a process of unnatural selection,(taking early run fish for brood stock), the hatcheries have created a strain of Coho that tends to enter the rivers in October. Fortunately for the trophy hunter, there are many Coho that remain out in the feeding grounds until November & into December before making their run. Double digit weights approaching 20 pounds are not uncommon, and the fish are very aggressive.
   A mid-winter thaw raises water levels, and brings the Chambers Creek steelies up from the lake. Hi-density sinktips are usually needed to reach these fish. Flashy patterns from the West Coast can be effective, as can huge marabou flies that attract fish from a distance.
   April's shirtsleeve weather may seem like strange conditions for steelheading, but it's the time to fish for the Ganaraska strain steelhead. This strain, developed in Ontario, has been stocked by the Wisconsin DNR to extend fishing opportunities well past the "normal" seasons.

16# Coho, minutes from the lake. mike_c01.jpg 34Kb Drifting a fly through broken "Pocket water". ripple.jpg 66Kb Wisconsin's stocking program has created a run of Splake in Green Bay streams. splake01.jpg 25Kb
A coin bright springer. ben_steel.jpg 30Kb   A Chambers Creek male in spawning color. steelhead_5.jpg 25Kb

Silver Doctor Fly Fishing
Contact Info
Bob Blumreich
P.O. Box 105
Viroqua,WI 54665

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