Nice dolly! Did you happen to snap any pics? I love the way those fish look and you see very few good images. My daughter once said "you caught a lizard!" as I reeled in a nice dolly, due to the spots.
Yup - Jeff got a digital (?) and Tyler snapped one as well. I'm hoping Jeff will post his. It was pretty stocky (first Dolly I've seen with shoulders), kinda middle color, and very strong.
Wish I'd looked at it closer, but i was still in shock after realizing it wasn't a steelhead!! <g> Fish took one of my little shrimp tube flies, and the little tiemco shortshank hook was imbedded in the root of the tongue (but no bleeding that I saw).
I rarely catch sea runs when steelheading and never figured out why. I catch dollies all the time and I think it is because I like to dredge the frog water at the bottom of a run.
On the other hand I target src in late summer and early fall. I love fishing reverse spiders just below the surface and watching the cutts come to the fly from 10 feet down or more. They are one of my favorite fish. Got one last summer that was over 24" long. Beautiful fish.
I have caught SRC over 20" on several occasions on a short peninsula stream. I also thought they were steelhead thru the first couple of minutes of the fight but then the other ten pounds never materialized. No disappointment though - the gold, silver hues and spots are something to be marveled at.
Columbia tribs have a solid population, especially the Cowlitz - the secret river that no one knows about ;-)
With dolly's its a "never know" type of thing. And as for Searuns (proably the greatest fish that swims, for its size) it depends on "when" and "where". Usually I dont find them in that heavy run type of water that really pushes against your waders, you know the kind, big salmon and steelhead will lay in if there is cover. I have always said that if searun cutts had an average size like steelhead or even close, I would be spending almost all my time chasing them instead.