A bright Rainbow / Steelhead Trout just in from the salt as it was released? These fish average 14″ – 20″ with some up to 28 caught each year. The question that I always have (our department of Fish & Game seems to feel the same way) is; ‘Is that a rainbow trout or is that a steelhead trout?” With the close proximity of many rivers and creeks to the ocean here coupled with the deep winter freeze, the trout have evolved into a semi anadromous specie that I call (unofficially) ‘Salters’ meaning that they drop down the rivers with the coming ice of winter. The freezing begins in the head waters and goes all the way to the tidal zone. Our trout drop down the rivers until they reach either deep pools where they can winter over while finding enough food for survival, or they go all the way to the tidal zone where the ‘food is good in the neighborhood’. When I catch a fish who is in great shape early in the season and fairly close to the salt water there is always the chance that it is fresh in from the tide waters. At any rate catching a nice one is always cause great excitement. I laid a measure beside this one, not a world record but as big as some salmon.
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