When someone asks me what’s my favorite species of salmon or trout to catch from Lake Michigan, it’s a tough question.
I like what’s biting best. I like the bulldog strength of a big king salmon. I like the fact that lake trout are "supposed" to be there–the lake’s natural top predator. I like the fact we on the south end of the lake have the
CAPTAIN DOUG ILIFF WITH ONE OF THE BIG
SKAMMIES THAT DIDN'T GET AWAY!
best coho salmon fishing in the world. But for a period each summer, I like Indiana’s "summer-run" Skamania strain steelhead better than all of them. Skamanias routinely grow larger, fight harder, jump higher and break more tackle and hearts than all the other fish put together.
Take yesterday, for example. Captain Doug Iliff asked me on board his boat along with 3 other captains from the East Chicago marina for a day of fun fishing. Rumor had it, the Skamanias–Skammies–were "in" at Portage, at the extreme southern tip of Lake Michigan.
I mean extreme! Not only were we fishing at the exact southern point of the 300 mile long lake, we were only in 10 to 20 feet of water most of the day, close enough the beach-goers could cheer us (or our fish) as we gave battle.
In the end, we boated 5 of the fish. The line broke seconds after a strike on another, they bent the hooks open on the lures we were using twice and another 7 or 8 of the silver torpedoes pulled a variety of Houdini-like tricks of their own making to offer us moments of thrills and disappointments.
All in all–a successful day in Skammy-Town. Expect the Skamania steelhead to continue offering fun and excitement at the south tip of the lake for another month or more. Call me! I’ll look forward to the trip as much as you!