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njg0621

What do you consider a trophy steelhead?

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62e74af0e2513afd669d29acb4567408.jpg
Wasn’t my biggest steelhead, but it was cool to catch a fantail. Here is a repo mount I got done


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So if it's caught out in the lake trolling is it a Rainbow or a Steelhead? I've always figured they were only Steelhead in the river and tho I've caught a fair number trolling never one in the river so the first would be a trophy ( never kept ).. My brother in law out on the west coast says we don't have steelhead only rainbows because our fish have never gone out to salt.

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horsehunter - To answer your question about the steelhead vs. rainbow. Basically there are various species in the rainbow trout family - some of which are "anadromous" which means they are born in freshwater and then migrate to salt water as adults where they roam during their adult lives, and then return to freshwater to spawn (often multiple times throughout their adult life contrasted with the Pacific salmon (e.g. Chinook and Coho) which spawn only at the end of their life... Some of the rainbow trout egg varieties stocked in the Great Lakes came from places (e.g. Pacific Northwest) that were hooked up to the ocean via rivers and those fish exhibited the typical anadromous behavior in those places, but when stocked in fresh water did not have access to saltwater so they are called "steelhead" because of the typical blue-green color noted on their heads. Some of the so-called "indigenous" rainbow trout species found in the streams and lakes of New York that haven't had salt water access may have seemingly different coloration and slight differences in appearance, and their roaming and feeding behavior may have differences as well as spawning cycle (e.g. Summer/Fall for "steelies" rather than early Spring). I'm not a biologist so I hope this adequately describes differences.

Great Brown Whaler1.:yes:

Edited by Sk8man

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Interesting thread.

 

I am from Chicago but left there before the stocking success in the Great Lakes. (Near my childhood home the best my brothers and I could do was fish for bullheads in the Des Plaines River.) I moved to Vermont in 1970 and shortly thereafter started stream/river fishing for trout there. Every once in a while someone would catch a 10lb+ brown from one of the the rivers, but any catch over 17" was a trophy to me.

 

I fished and fished and, after learning about trout habitat and how to read the water, started to consistently catch small browns and rainbows. Finally one day I caught a brown a little over 17". I immediately showed the fish to a fisherman who had mentored me and he said to get that fish mounted which I did. I can't remember how many days after I took my "trophy" to the taxidermist, but it wasn't very many, when I caught a 17" rainbow. Again my friend advised me to get that one mounted and I did. 

 

I picked up the two mounted fish, took them to the apartment where I lived, and had the following thought: What do I need these two mounts for? The brown was special - it was my first big trout. But the rainbow? And I didn't have lots of wall space...

 

I went back to my mentor and shared my thoughts. No problem, he said. I know a restaurant owner who will buy that rainbow. And that's what happened to mount #2.

 

45 years later the brown sits on the wall in my office where I am typing this. There's something about the first, the first love, the first child, etc.

 

Tight lines and trophies to all in 2019.

Edited by tmcaul
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Steelheads are salt water survivors. Their river system where they develop in are developed in have different traits . Some have leopard coloration. Maturing in saltwater develop survival traits that fresh water matured rainbows fail to develop. But if you want call them Steelhead that is ok also.


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6 hours ago, jimski2 said:

Steelheads are salt water survivors. Their river system where they develop in are developed in have different traits . Some have leopard coloration. Maturing in saltwater develop survival traits that fresh water matured rainbows fail to develop. But if you want call them Steelhead that is ok also.


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Interesting post. It raises the question of whether a fish should be named according to it's genetic makeup or it's behavior. The steelhead in Lake Ontario are either Washington strain or Skamania, both of which come from the West coast. However, steelhead are also defined as a strain of rainbow trout that migrate to saltwater. So, I guess you could argue both. I will stick with steelhead for the West coast strains and lake run rainbows for the domestic strain.

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My trophy steelhead was the first one I ever caught trolling. It was probably around 14 pounds, but that is beside the point. The way I caught it made it a priceless trophy.

Trolling out of Olcott at the 27 line and not knowing what I was doing I just sort of followed a charter boat and aped him. It hit a 300 leadcore with an orange crush and a small dodger. It promply broke my line just into the backing and made me feel like a fool for having yet again lost $30 dollars with nothing to show for it. But this one was mad at the lure and started jumping and trashing at the surface trying to get rid of the lure. I turned the boat around, grabbed the net and netted him. The fish did not even know that I had come to get him from 300 feet away. I got my leadcore, dodger and lure back. But I did let the fish go. He deserved it. But I will always remember him as my trophy.

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Mine and my Wifes personal best Steelhead. Caught way back in 1995 with Kevin Davis. My wife caught the male Steelie (top fish) that was just shy of 21 pounds. Then I caught the female (bottom fish) that was 20 pounds. Both on egg sacks both from the same hole on the Oswego River. Both fish caught about 20 minutes apart. Only two Steelhead I have ever kept in 29 years of fishing Lake Ontario. That was back in the days of true giant Steelies. I have yet to see any or hook any close to that size on the Lake or in the Rivers.

Qus4qpULSLePEr88Fy8gJQ.jpg

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On ‎12‎/‎24‎/‎2018 at 6:55 PM, Gator said:

 

Interesting post. It raises the question of whether a fish should be named according to it's genetic makeup or it's behavior. The steelhead in Lake Ontario are either Washington strain or Skamania, both of which come from the West coast. However, steelhead are also defined as a strain of rainbow trout that migrate to saltwater. So, I guess you could argue both. I will stick with steelhead for the West coast strains and lake run rainbows for the domestic strain.

We have Washington ( Chambers Creek) strain, Skamania strain, and McCloud strain fish in Lake Ontario.  All are the same species, Oncorhynchus  mykiss, reclassified from Genus Salmo because a Russian taxonomist was determined to have described and named the species first.  The Chambers Creek fish go into the rivers and streams that are stocked with "steelhead,"  most if not all Skamania's go into the Salmon River, and both are raised at the Altmar hatchery.  The McCloud fish are descended from the fish brought to NYS by Seth Green, are shore stocked along the lake at various locations, are raised at the Randolph hatchery, and  are often referred to as domestic rainbows .  While the saltwater distinction is maintained by some biologists and a lot of west coast fishers, many also see the freshwater transplants as also being "steelhead, because they follow the same stream, big water, stream life cycle as they do in Saltwater.

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On ‎12‎/‎23‎/‎2018 at 1:22 PM, fisherman21 said:

62e74af0e2513afd669d29acb4567408.jpg
Wasn’t my biggest steelhead, but it was cool to catch a fantail. Here is a repo mount I got done


Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

I literally read your post Wednesday night about the fantail and bang the next morning I get one.  Awesome mount who did it for you?  I think I may have mine done.

fantail.jpg

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On 12/31/2018 at 11:33 AM, copperpin said:

I literally read your post Wednesday night about the fantail and bang the next morning I get one.  Awesome mount who did it for you?  I think I may have mine done.

fantail.jpg

Those are cool as can be.  Exceptionally rare? Females only?  I think I would have to kill and mount one of those.

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On 12/31/2018 at 12:33 PM, copperpin said:

I literally read your post Wednesday night about the fantail and bang the next morning I get one.  Awesome mount who did it for you?  I think I may have mine done.

fantail.jpg

Hey Mike,

  Remember how I used to have good luck at raffles. I still do. I have an Okuma center pin rod and reel that I won at a raffle several years ago, still in the box never used.  How about teaching me how to use them.  One more thing I can get into.

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On ‎1‎/‎1‎/‎2019 at 8:52 AM, fisherman21 said:

Angling Artisan. The guys name is Rich Benedict


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""Your not going to catch fish if you dont have a line in the water!"  My grandson tried to catch a " steelhead " with a magnet ! LOL

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