After reviewing, I would just like to appoligize for my previous reply. It did not come off the way I intended it to................sorry.
There are some conservation issues, here on my local Steelhead waters, which are on the back of my mind when posting.
On smaller tribs I love to fish soft hackles sz. 6 to 10 slightly weighted or bead head, cast 45% upstream, drift and then swung out. I use a floating line, hand tied mono leader with a good butt section, a small size b or bb split shot or two when needed, etc. This is about the only way they(smaller streams) can be fished. A RIO 7' sinking leader only comes into play if the flows are high and in a couple certain pools.
I fact I do the same on larger rivers when the Steelhead won't chase much,slots,chutes,etc. or if every indicator nymphing egg fisherman and centerpiner is hooking up and because of pressure, cold water, what ever........I can not get a fish to pursue a streamer,bugger,etc. on a sink tip.
I very much enjoy tying and fishing my soft hackles for both Steelhead & Trout...............always have, always will. Very simular to what you "spoke of".
The only problem I have with "how people fish" is...........................how it effects the fishery from a ethics and conservation standpoint and how it effects the fish being pursued from a respect and conservation standpoint. Unfortunately on some waters the great Steelhead & Salmon become a numbers game and get about as much respect as catching buckets of panfish from a boat with bait.