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Thread: 20 Lb Steelhead

  1. #1

    Default 20 Lb Steelhead

    Looking for your best estimate. On average how long (inches) is a 20 Lb Steelhead? Don't want to take one out of the water to weigh it but sure will measure one. Thanks

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    I have been told a pound per inch after 20 inches. I have caught a few that were over 20 lbs that didn't meet that. The goal is a steelhead, if you're looking for a size, well good luck.

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    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Steelhead are built like 2 x 4's .... length is generally twice their girth.

    If it ain't 40, it probably ain't 20 either
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    Normally it's every inch past 30 is a pound so a 40 inch steelhead is going to be about 40 pounds.

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    I wouldn't even try and guess based on length alone, I've seen steelhead from the same river that were distinctly different in girth. Most rivers produce fairly cookie cutter fish but one particular river here in AK has produced a huge range of sizes for me, probably the biggest I've seen.

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    Biggest steelhead I have ever netted for anyone was 36 inches and that went a hair under 17lbs. Landed a few others around 35 but never weighed them.


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    The standard formula to figure steelhead weight is L x G2 divided by 775. Very few steel under 40 inch will go 20 lbs unless it is overly girthy. I used to get at least 1 every year and 8 of them on my best year, but now it's been since 2011 since my last one.

  8. #8

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    Thanks everyone for your input. Sounds like they are about like Pike. 40 inches is near 20 Lbs. 30 inches is about 10 and about a pound an inch after that. Thanks again

  9. #9

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    I've handled hundreds of steelhead. Most bucks over 38" will go 20#. If you hit 40" it's a good bet that it's over 20#.
    That being said.... I seen a 25.2lbs steelhead off the Smith river in Northern California that only measured 35"!
    Most of us just use a fish calculator on the Internet.
    Here's a link
    http://www.steelheader.net/Toppages/...calculator.htm

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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quest32a View Post
    Biggest steelhead I have ever netted for anyone was 36 inches and that went a hair under 17lbs. Landed a few others around 35 but never weighed them.


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    I've only caught one, so not an expert obviously. But my 36" fish was estimated in this range as well. As suggested, length can't alone determine a weight though. Lots of variance.
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    Unless you are talking downers, the conservative 40/20 rule holds true in the vast majority of cases and you'll never be accused of exaggeration.

    In very round numbers the length girth formulas on lanky fish with 2 x 4 proportions fall in the neighborhood of 40 x 20 x 20 / 800. The math is easy because 40 x 20 = 800, which cancels out top and bottom, leaving you with just the 20 on top.

    If you want to use a more precise 775 for your divisor, the final estimated weight doesn't increase by much... less than a pound at 40 inches. (20.6 vs 20)
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    Fish stories.......
    Responsible Conservation > Political Allocation

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoose35 View Post
    Fish stories.......
    Yup. From what I've seen in more than 40 years fishing for both, steelhead over 20# are even scarcer than kings over 60#.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrownBear View Post
    Yup. From what I've seen in more than 40 years fishing for both, steelhead over 20# are even scarcer than kings over 60#.
    Indeed... out of 100's over 4 decades, only one has inched past the 20# mark... and even then, just barely. Fork length 39 x 20.25 girth.... thanks to the expertise of master steelhead guide Bob Ball of Piscatorial Pursuits.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

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    Quote Originally Posted by fishNphysician View Post
    Indeed... out of 100's over 4 decades, only one has inched past the 20# mark... and even then, just barely. Fork length 39 x 20.25 girth.... thanks to the expertise of master steelhead guide Bob Ball of Piscatorial Pursuits.
    This fish has made the rounds over the last twenty years…but it measured 44.5 x 23in. guesstimated over thirty pounds.



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    ^^^Hey, I remember that fish! The very next year, I landed a 42"x22" just down stream from where you got that one Dan. No idea on wt. but I think it would have made 20 lbs. pretty easily.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AK Troutbum View Post
    ^^^Hey, I remember that fish! The very next year, I landed a 42"x22" just down stream from where you got that one Dan. No idea on wt. but I think it would have made 20 lbs. pretty easily.
    Closer to thirty pounds, with that length and girth!

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    Looks like Fun hook me up with one of those bad boys. I need a good azz kicking
    Got to look good even in defeat. IMAGE is everything.

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