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Lt Jangle

Steelhead streamer hook shank length

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Hey guys, Im tying up some eggs and streamers to throw to some Great Lakes steelhead in the next couple of days. Ive been tying smaller silver shiner type patterns but have been using shorter shank hooks (owner mosquito). Is this ideal, or should I be using something with a longer shank? I see some flies are longer shanked or have an trailer hook near the tail. Thank you very much!

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I tie most steamers for steelhead on standard up-eyed salmon hooks. But mainly for the hook strength. Steelhead rarely nibble at steamers so I see no need of a tail hook and beyond that don't like the extra fumbling in unhooking a fish and the risk of deep hooking one with fatal results. Short shank strong hooks should work OK but then you will not have much of a body for contrasting/complementary materials.

 

Rocco

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Maybe consider tube flies. You still get to use a short shanked hook that is harder for fish to toss than long but it puts the hook at the back of the fly. Flies tend to last longer because when a fish takes one the fly itself tends to slide up the line leaving the fish and hook together, which is a good thing when tying fancy or more complicated patterns. And you can tie Modern steelhead patterns or classic patterns on tubes as well as you can on a long shanked hook. I have changed to tying my green and also my grey ghosts on tubes for instance...

 

I can't speak for egg patterns, never used one.

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