It’s becoming evident as the water is clearing that the post-spawn steelhead are becoming more sensitive which means we have to use lighter leaders, smaller sensitive floats, smaller hooks, and smaller egg-sacks. This is the time when drift rods can really help to make a natural presentation from further up-stream allowing the current to gently present our baits to unsuspecting steelhead.
Both Aaron and I have done well fishing the Rapala Shift Drift Rods and matching Rapala Drift Reels. These center-pin reels are so smooth that the slightest current pressure on the float gently free-spools line at current-speed making for the best drift-presentation.
Many anglers don’t realize that when it comes to drifting clearer water it’s much more effective to use smaller hooks. The smaller hooks are less visible to steelhead, they are less likely to catch submerged wood, or the bottom, but once you set the hook in a fish, they easily embed themselves past the barb and the steelhead can’t shake them.