I know it’s kinda old skool, but I still love pulling plugs for steelhead. The Armageddon-like take-downs…when the rod tip snaps down and starts bucking like it’s caught in a kicker prop…are so bad-ass that they make up for the fact that the boat is basically doing the fishing.
I’m getting goosebumps…better get back on track here. Anyway, I have tried all sorts of lines for this method and recently found one that’s been working out really well this season: Sunline’s Siglon F.Sunline is a high-end brand that is most often used by tournament bassers…but you know me, I’m always looking to other styles of fishing for things to add to my salmon & steelhead arsenals!
What drew me to this stuff is the fact that it is (through some resin enforcement processing that I fail to understand), very durable and shock and curl resistant (a big plus!). The other thing I really appreciate is it has some sort of UV coating that keeps the line from breaking down and losing it’s color.
For back trolling for steelies, I really like running bright line so I can see where all my gear is. The problem is, most other fluorescent lines I’ve used have eventually faded. So far, so good with Siglon F! As far as the shock resistance goes, we’ve had some massive, almost rod-snapping grabs and no issues with break-offs. That holds true also in regards to the line’s ability to shrug of abrasion — this past fall, we hooked a handful of Chinook on light gear while plugging for steelies and the Siglon F withstood the abuse of gill plates, teeth and tail slaps. At this point, I’m overall very impressed!
As you can see in the above shot, the Siglon F looks kinda cool on the reel (for whatever that’s worth). It comes in tests from 2- to 40-pound and I’ve been running the odd size of 13.5-pound, which seems to be be tough enough to handle the punishment of big fish yet also has a slim enough diameter that I can run small plugs with ease. In the pic below, you can see how easy it is to see and “read” the bright yellow color. Speaking of bright line, just be sure to run a 10- to 20-foot section of clear mono or fluorocarbon between your plug snap and the SigLon F as it is very yellow underwater too! I use an Albright Knot to splice the two.