A Popular Steelhead Fishing Technique is Bobber Fishing and Here’s How to Do It
Normally when people think bobber fishing it's for bluegill and other types of panfish but bobber fishing for steelhead has become one of the most popular ways to catch them.
Where I Learned To Steelhead Fish
I have fished for steelhead on and off for years. I started fishing for them on the Manistee River with my good friend Curt. I later moved to Indiana in the South Bend area where a partnership between the Indiana DNR and the Michigan DNR to breed steelhead Mishawaka, Indiana. The steelhead fishing is pretty darn good in the St. Joseph river in South Bend all the way to the mouth in Lake Michigan.
I started off using wobble glows tied to a 2 1/2 to 3 ft leader line with a three-way swivel. One of the swivels would have a 1/2 or 1/4 ounce weight and even sometimes a 3/4 ounce weight tied to a short leader line. I used the short leader line on the sinker because it is usually what snags up on the river bottom and that line would break and allow me to keep the rest of my rig. I was successful just using the wobble glows but I sometimes would set up a rod and fish with a nightcrawler off the bottom and catch them that way also.
If you would like to try the wobble glow method, check out the video below:
Fishing for Steelhead by Croton Dam on Muskegon River
A few years ago I moved to Newaygo County and just a few minutes from the Croton Dam and the Muskegon River. I drove by the dam a lot all year long and noticed guys in boats in the winter months and even fishing in the rain. What I have learned, if guys are fishing in the winter or the rain, there must be some fish there.
I was still dragging my line off the bottom with wobble glows when I noticed all the other guys were using bobbers and not snagging their lines and having to re-tie as much as me. So the thought of losing less tackle and getting in more fishing time intrigued me.
Some anglers still bottom fish, others use lures or flies but most of the anglers are strictly bobber fishing for steelhead.
How Do You Bobber Fish for Steelhead
I am by no means a pro-fisherman and I have my struggles just like the next guy but this bobber fishing is something I have been working on the past couple of years and I'm getting better at it. Rather than bore you with my knowledge, here are some videos that will help you set up your rig and how to fish using a bobber for steelhead.
Here is a video that helped me set up my rig and to understand better what the bobber is doing:
I find it good to watch a bunch of different videos and setups to kind of help find different methods and apply those to the place I'm fishing.
This next video shows you ways to bobber fish a variety of trout species:
I hope these videos help you as much as they have helped me. Good luck on getting to yell those magic words of "Fish On!"