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Steelhead Mania – Making Sense Out of Scent

February 7th, 2011 @

On the market today we have three basic salmon and steelhead scents. All of these products work well, not just because they attract salmonoids but because they help mask that nasty human odor called L-serine. L-serine is an amino acid secreted by the human body. Some people have much higher levels of L-serine than others. L-serine will turn a good bite bad, if not masked.

Making sense out of scents pays off big time for another satisfied angler!

Making sense out of scents pays off big time for another satisfied angler!

Fear not friends, there is a solution to the pollution. Oil based scents such as Smelly Jelly or Uncle Mike’s have a good shelf life if kept in a cool area, make steelhead hold onto your bait longer and tend to mask the human odor.
The second type of scents that work well are those that add amino acids to the mix. Berkley attractants are based on evidence that amino acids will attract and stimulate more bites by sending a scent trail downstream, plus cover up human scent.

The third type of scents in today’s market is Pheromone scent. Pheromone scent has been used in the hunting world for years. These are generally referred to as doe in heat or rutting scents for elk and deer. Pheromones are a chemical used by animals to communicate with their own species. Dr. Juice elixir is a scent based product using Pheromones. Pheromones are released by steelhead and salmon especially during spawning season. This is how the male finds a female on her spawning bed, the olfactory receptors are stimulated causing fish to move into the area to check things out, plus this elixir will help mask human scent.

Now we’ve gone over the three scent categories I hope you’ve noticed that at the end of each product I have mentioned covering up human scent, namely the L-serine.

A selection of scents and cleaners to help you make sense out of scents!

A selection of scents and cleaners to help you make sense out of scents!

Salmon & steelhead can smell one part per 8 million. This being true, let’s move on to bad scents namely; gasoline, insect repellents, fried chicken, potato chips, sunscreen or unwashed hands, terminal tackle, plugs, rods, reels, line, leaders, corkies, spoons, pliers, scissors, all tools including your boat need to be cleaned. I use lemon Joy and it works great to get the stink off.

No better example could be given than the following story: I guided a husband and wife to a bobber hole a few years back and the fish were really on the bite. The wife hooked and tagged a limit of fish in short order. On the other hand, her husband using the same jig, set at the same depth couldn’t get a strike for over an hour. I couldn’t believe it. The steelhead were loaded and rolling all around us. Hubby was frustrated getting nervous which really kicked up his L-serine levels. I called for a time out and asked to see his hands at which point I had him wash his hands in Smelly Jelly Crawdaddy. I then put on a buck tail jig and saturated it with Crawdaddy. I put Crawdaddy all over the leader, sinker and 50 ft. of line. What happened next blew my mind. In just three casts “Mr. L-Serine” hooked and landed his two fish limit. Game over, good job! Picture time! Big smiles and a lesson learned.

Good luck and for further information or training classes contact Riverside Russ at Riverside Motel & Guide Service, 10560 Hwy 12, Orofino, ID 83544 phone (208) 476-5711.

Category : Steelhead Fishing Tips

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Contact Info

Riverside Guide Service
11360 Highway 12
P.O. Box 1369
Orofino, ID 83544

Tel : (503) 871-1339
Email : russiott@yahoo.com