There seem to be three key factors that change from day to day. Figuring out the right combination of variations within these three parameters will determine your success.
1] Location: Based on the time of year, where are the fish located?
Winter fish are often located in the gut of the deepest pools and runs in the stream, moving to the tailouts during the warmest part of the day to feed.
Fall fish will often occupy the classic runs where you would expect them to be, but some days be pushed by into secondary holding water by boat traffic and fishing pressure.
Spring fish could be anywhere, based on water temperature, flow, and progression of the spawn. Knowing where the feeding fish are likely to be is the key to success.
2] Terminal Gear: This is the area that anglers spend the most time scratching their collective noggins. Bait or fly, salmon or steelhead, gut or loose eggs, natural or cured? What float do I use? How deep do I set? How light should my tippet be? How much weight do I use?
The list of questions on this topic is endless. Local knowledge of the stream and time of year you are fishing is key.
The right answer to any and all of these questions can be the difference maker on a challenging day.
While most center-pinning enthusiast insist upon a completely natural looking drag free drift, we have found that in certain water conditions and low temperatures it is imperative that you slow the presentation down. Sometimes, making the bait or fly look “un-natural”, is the only way to garner a strike.
Hulst Outfitters www.michiganriverguide.com