February Rogue River Steelhead

True winter steelhead may be just weeks away from entering the upper Rogue River, but if there is one thing this winter’s low water of January and February has shown is that there are always some steelhead around. Summer, fall or late fall fish (whatever you want to term these steelhead) arrive earlier than the true winter run. Normal first of the year high water conditions makes them impossible to fly fish for, and that same high water also pulls them up readily into the many small feeder tributaries to spawn. This year, to this date, the river flow has remained mid-fall like with very few high rain episode. The fall fish have remained around longer. Now that is not what I was out seeking. With recent rain I was looking for the advance guard of the large, winter fish. After that recent high flow had rescinded I fished and was happily pleased with the results of the outing. While not winter run, these steelhead were pretty fresh and active.

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