In the not so distant future fishermen across the Great Lakes will begin to prepare for the spring run of steelhead that will occur in a large majority of the tributaries of the Great Lakes. Often the steelhead that run in the spring are larger and more mature than the steelhead that run in the fall in the tributaries. Fishing for steelhead in the spring will begin as soon as the ice clears from the streams and often will steelhead will continue to run until the first part of June.
The biggest runs of steelhead in the spring especially in the Lake Erie streams will be in early March and will stop the first half of April. However in the larger streams such as the Cattaraugus in New York steelhead will run into the end of May. Often in the Catt the steelhead that are running in May are not spawning, but rather they are feeding on Lake Erie shiners that run upstream in May. Here are some areas of a stream or river that will hold steelhead and produce in the spring.
move to the deeper water. A good way to target a tailout is to swing wooly buggers and other streamers in the tailout holds. Tailouts with wood or other structure will be the most productive. Target tailouts early in the morning and when fishing pressure isn't as great.
In conclusion, this is the time to start preparing for your steelhead trip by tying flies, preparing your gear, and planning your spring steelhead trips. Remember the water is often very cold in the early months of spring so stay warm and be safe