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Started fishing here in Oregon on a variety of rivers back in 1992 and always heard tales of the elusive steelhead. Hooked into a few last year on the McKenzie but never got them to the boat. It's been a rough year, just turned 45. Probably have to move again soon for lack of work (I paint). Last Sunday my dog and I went for a little kayak ride on the S. Santiam and at the last moment I threw a rod onboard.

We got as far upstream as I could paddle with her on the back and I eased it onto a gravel bar. Casting for over an hour and just finishing up a run the tip bent ever so slightly. Then once more. And then the line started to peel off the spool. Ten minutes later I drug the 32" steelie up next to the kayak and I think the dog was just as excited as I was.

If you're out there and ya see some nut on an orange sit-on-top kayak between Lebanon and Sweet Home wave and say hi. I'd really like to meet more folks in this area.

Greg
 

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Sniffer --- What a great story. Bet you were one excited dude!
 

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congrats on the fish!! the first are always special.

i think i may have heard of mackinaws brought up on the board here a few times (or maybe my mind is playing tricks on me as i get older). hit the search button to find out more. if they are here, i'm guessing it's a pretty untapped fishery.
 

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Fish Sniffer your a hero and I hope you never forget that first steelhead. Congrats to you and your dog. Patience is the key. Never forget what you were using and where you caught that fish. You will pull others from right there.

Mac's are also called lake trout and they are in a number of lakes in Oregon. One I go to is Odell Lake, East of Eugene about 75 miles. Pull down the ODFW and you can get a list of where these lakes are. Odell may be a little to big and windblown for a small craft with dog mounted on it.

Congrats again and now go get em....

*Fish only bite wet hooks*
 

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Way to go on the fish!! :cheers:

Also, don't use the term "not the biggest" to describe a 32 "summer steelhead. That's a dang nice summer anywhere in the lower 48!!
 

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Nice job :cheers:
I have yet to catch a steelhead this year!! Ive been trying hard too.
 

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The first is the best! And 32" is not that small. Congratulations...and hope you find work!

Many of the Cascade lakes have Mackinaws (Lake Trout)

[ 07-02-2003, 10:21 PM: Message edited by: Grantspastor ]
 

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Crescent Lake, just east of Odell also has Macks, and is not near as windy as Odell.
Cultus Lake(just west of Crane Prairie) also has them but mostly lots of small ones 14-20 inches. They are easy to catch here compared to the other two lakes but hard to find a big one. I call it my mack practice/confidence lake. You can easily find them with a good fish finder. They will hit about any lure/plug/bait you can get down to them.
A downrigger is best, in fact I've seen lots of disappointed people without downriggers- with lots of weight trying to get down 80-100 ft. with little success. After I catch 10-20 of these I can then go the next day to one of the big mack lakes and feel more like I will be able to latch into a real fish!

[ 07-09-2003, 11:15 PM: Message edited by: trollin4trout ]
 

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Ya gotta love the first steelie, you'll never, and I mean, NEVER forget it. I won't forget mine either. :dance: :dance:
 
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