It’s spring Steelhead season again…..that time of year when Salmon River steelhead swim 800 plus miles to the Challis, Idaho area in order to spawn, and give anglers a chance at catching a steelhead. Now is the time to be fishing, whether you are trying to hook your first steelie, or are a seasoned pro. Fishing in the Challis area is good and improving by the day.
If you’re fly fishing, a floating line or sink tip in a 7 or 8 wt. works great. On floating lines, I like a 10-12 ft. leader for better control of your drift. If you are using a sink tip, you want a leader of no more than 4 ft. in length, including the tippet so your fly stays down where you need to have it. Swinging a fly can be productive in the spring, but you’re going to do better using a nymphing technique to get to the fish. This time of year, you might find a fish that wants to chase your fly, but most aren’t going to go too far out of their way to eat anything.
You can use your regular steelhead flies like green butt skunks, egg sucking leeches, bunny bugs, and egg patterns. Stone fly nymphs work great too. I like to use stoneflies with colors in them like pink or chartreuse, but standard stonefly patterns work well too.
If you use spinning gear, the most popular colors are blue, copper and green. Of course other colors will also work, but these three colors would be my first choices. The next 2-3 weeks is prime-time for fishing for steelhead here, so get to it! Call us anytime for a current fishing report 1-888-BENTROD.