Ok, so I lied. I said a couple of posts back that bass rule. And they do - unless we're talking about steelhead. In which case the steelies rule and bass take a back seat. Even striped bass. Maybe. Anyway, had my first taste of steelhead fishing a couple of days ago on the Muskegon river in western Michigan. Pretty good stuff. Only had three hook-ups in about three hours of fishing, landing one. Still, that one was a stud - an eight pounder fresh from the lake, silver as new nickel and sporting a serious set of shoulders. I felt a couple of hard bumps and the next thing I knew, I was into the backing. Way into the backing. Cool. She made her runs but eventually my guide scooped her up into the net. I nearly pissed myself. So I've got the steelhead bug pretty bad now. That one fish was enough to do it. And I'm sure I would have caught more fish had I been able to cast worth a crap. This first steelhead trip was also my first time fishing with a spey rod. I really suck at it. I mean, I did ok when practicing with a floating line. I could more or less pull off a circle-c or a double spey when I needed too. Not pretty, but workable. Out on the river though, where the water was high and stained, we were forced to use a fast sinking shooting head to get down to the fish. And yeah, I struggled. Casting that head was a real pain and I was really bad at it and only got the fly in the strike zone about half the time. So I'm guessing next time my hook-up rate goes up exponentially, 'cause I plan on practicing my arse off with my spey rod. And about the photo below of the brook trout - the Little Muskegon ran through the campground where I stayed. At the end of the day, a short walk from my tent were early black stone flies and willing brookies. Talk about icing on the cake. I think I need to move to Michigan.