41-inch fish taken on Skeena River tributary
RUMORS OF RECORD or near-record steelhead taken on a fly continue to filter out of the Skeena River system in British Columbia, and the latest is a good example. Fishing last spring on his first trip to a Skeena tributary, Robert S. Tomes of Chicago hooked something on a Krystal Bugger; well, let's let him tell it:
"It was the kind of strike you only read about in fishing magazines. After a few solid head-shakes and rolls, I realized this was no ordinary steel- head and began the slow process of trying to gain control. It was a deep tailout, with Class V rapids below, so I knew I had to keep the pressure on or face certain defeat. A half-hour later I had the fish within reach and asked my friend Mike to tail it. Although practiced in the art of hand-tailing big fish, Mike simply could not get a solid grip on the large tall and the steelhead bolted. I was forced to pull the fish upstream, and I shook with excitement and fear as he made several attempts to twist free. Mike tailed the fish with a loud "Oh, my God!" We snapped a few shots and quickly taped the male steel-head--41 inches long with a 25-inch girth--and released it. I was using a Maxima 15- pound tippet on a G. Loomis GLX 9.5-foot, 8-weight and a Teeny 300 line."