I originally posted this to the 88th's forum but, figured I'd share with the rest of my brothers and sisters.

The trip described in this post occurred from Nov 14th to Nov 17th, 2013.


Originally posted by Mindkill
Heh, I forgot to post the trips AAR..

We fished for a few hours Friday and Saturday at Tippy dam and didn't catch anything. All three of us hooked into a steelhead but, them spirited bastards got off the hook. The one I tied into gave me a good 15-20 second tug-o-war and really got my appetite whetted for a more prolonged battle.

On Saturday, about an hour before we left the dam, some little Chinese guy, with his wife and camera in tow, started fishing. Every cast of his either caught the bottom or pulled in a steelhead. In that hour, he caught no less than 15 steelhead.. and he released them all. I kept wanting to yell, 'HAXOR!'.

Roger and I both started watching him closely, to find his secret. Roger focused on his gear.. what type of rod and line, type of lure, if he had a bobber or splitshot. Whereas, I focused on where he was casting to and his reel-in technique. From what I saw, I'm pretty sure this guy caught so much fish because of the location of his cast, which was where the majority of water left the pool and went over the foot dam. I'm pretty sure there's a big hole wore on the dam side of the foot dam and that the steelhead kind of hang out there. After all, steelhead like cold and highly oxygenated water, and with the rolling/roiling motion of the water as it hits the foot dam, it would cool the water and bubble it pretty good. I also came to the realization that steelhead are just big, lake dwelling rainbow trout and that they should probably be fished the same way as a trout in the stream behind the cabin.

Unfortunately, for us to be able to fish that area, we're going to have to have a pretty heavy spoon/lure and relatively light line to cast the 50 yards or so to that hole. Not to mention, there are usually waders and a guy in a canoe that are fishing that same hole. Or, we could try and get to the other side of the pond.. but that would require another 1/2 hour of driving time and traversing the 300 or so steps that lead down there. I doubt Ron could make it down all those stairs, what with his age and poor health. So that's probably out. I think, next time we go fishing for steelhead, I'm going to go down stream, past the foot dam and fish the 'natural' river. My plan will be to fish like I'm targeting stream trout.. drifting bait/lures under ledges, through riffles, downriver sides of holes and around the many boulders that litter the area.

As far as Roger's hunting.. he didn't even see a deer, which isn't too surprising. Most of the deer herds have moved to southern Michigan, where there are more farms and, hence, more food. The only reason people hunt in northern Michigan is because you can hunt with rifles.

On Friday morning, Roger sat about 75 yards or so from the cabin, down by the stream, from just before dawn until around 9am. Ron and I did our best to be quiet, sitting in the cabin and drinking coffee. We'd occasionally step out for a smoke but, were still pretty quiet. Saturday morning, we got so freaking bored, Ron decided to let Roger know we were tired of sitting there. So, he went out, started up his truck and started blaring Johnny Cash on the stereo. Within 2 minutes, Roger came storming up the hill, bitching about the noise. Ron and I laughed about it and said, 'Not like you were gonna see a deer anyways! Lets go fishin'!'. For the rest of the day, Ron and I would start singing 'Ring of Fire' to let Rog know we were bored. Good times!

I was pretty bummed there were so many hunters in the area. All 3 of the cabins in our area were occupied and chuck full of hunters. We only got to meet one of them, and he was the nicest guy we've met up there. He hung out at our campfire for a good hour or more, swapping hunting stories and dreaming about the 2014 trout season. He gave us some good pointers on fishing for steelhead, since he claimed to have caught quite a few at Tippy. We then gave him some of our best kept secrets for hauling trout out of the stream.

Anyway, the reason I was really bummed with all the hunters is that it kept us from hiking any of the cool trails and such. We figured that it was best to not tempt fate and get shot by some drunk with a R700 or 30-30, even though we were wearing the required blaze orange.

All in all, we had a blast.. now, the long winter yawns out in front of us and we dream the dream of spring trout season.