Wednesday, March 11, 2009

All things steelhead

The really bummer weather of late has dimmed the steelhead fishing for the past several days.

The last report was for Saturday with good fly fishing in the Ashtabula River along Indian Trail Park in Ashtabula.

Be that as it may, steelheaders can help the cause by attending the Lake (Metroparks) Parks Foundation's Annual Steelheaders Ball.

This year's event is scheduled for March 28, starting around 6:30 p.m. at Lake Metroparks' Pine Ridge County Club in Wickliffe.

Cost is a surprisingly affordable $45 per person, $90 per couple.

And what, exactly, does one get for the money? Glad you asked.

A superb buffet-style dinner and early open bar, for starters, along with the opportunity to win some wonderful stuff in various silent auctions. Among the items that the parks system's acting director Steve Madewell says will be available include: a Victoria Secret gift basket, a hand-made purse, a GPS unit, Fly Logic rod and reel, Ross fly reels. tickets to Indians and lake County Captain games, a pheasant hunt with Fritz Neubauer, a two-night stay at a Lake Metroparks' cabin, two Creek Company pontoon boats, Dicks Sporting Goods gift cards, and a mess of other cool goodies.

To date these functions have raised more than $24,000 with the money going to help angler access along both the Grand and Chagrin rivers within the Lake Metroparks' family of of park units.

You'll typically see about 200 people having a great time, listening to live music, enjoying the food and laughing at fishermen's tall tales.

For more information, call 440-352-0729 or visit the Foundation's web site at

While we are on the subject of steelhead there's a new book out about the subject. It's a 115-page soft-cover book written by Ohio outdoors writer W.H. Chip Gross.

It's title is Pro Tactics' Steelhead and Salmon, published by the acclaimed outdoors publishing firm of the Lyons Press.

This book not only looks at salmonid fishing in the Great Lakes but wherever steelhead and salmon are found.

That is a tall order and Gross readily admits that he's no expert on all things salmon and trout.

Rather, each chapter is a first-person account by experts in their respective fisheries and fields.

For our area Gross has depended upon steelhead efishing xpert, Jeff Liskay (who just might show up at the Steelheader's Ball).

Lisky's take is contained in chapter three: Steelheading Great Lakes Rivers.

At first I wasn't so sure that the use of individual experts would work in a book but it does, and does so very well. These pros are charter captains, fishing guides, outdoor writers, the whole shebang.

In all the book contains 10 chapters, five each for steelhead and salmon.

The color photography work in the book is really first-rate, too, and adds to a wonderful and informative read.

Cost is $26.50, which includes shipping and handling, and can be addressed to: WORDsmith, 6108 Township Road 88, Fredericktown, OH 43019. These will be personalized and autographed by Gross.

Non-autographed copies, says Gross, can be ordered online at or a local book store for a nickel less than $20.

- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn

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