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AR-Tenner  
#1 Posted : Monday, May 16, 2016 7:51:43 AM(UTC)
AR-Tenner
Rank: Midge

Joined: 5/15/2016(UTC)
Posts: 8
Location: Virginia

Hi Folks,

I am new to the forum, and can't tell y'all how happy I am to finally find a forum where I can talk trout fishing with like-minded folks. If I might introduce myself, trout have always been far and away my favorite fish to pursue, and despite having lived my whole life in warmwater areas (except for a couple years in northern China where I successfully pursued some stocked rainbows), have gone after trout literally every time I have been in an environment that can support them. I was 5 when I pulled my first rainbow from a small Appalachian creek, and I've been a devotee ever since. I live in northern Virginia and work as an attorney in DC, but y'all better believe while I am looking out my office window at that cityscape my mind is unceasingly wandering to the mountain streams I long to fish. Being from the east I have only really gone after the big three species, but was lucky enough to get a Dolly Varden once on vacation out west, and hope to add the Bull, Cutthroat, Lake, Sunapee, Apache, Golden, and Silver (I bet a few of those are still swimming around in Dublin Pond or Christine Lake) to my list.

My far-and-away best catch, and one I am resigned to possibly never topping was the result of a five-hour bushwhacking hike (no trail) in the freezing rain the day after Thanksgiving when I was 13 up to the very high headwaters of a totally-ignored wild trout stream in southwestern North Carolina, where after drifting grubs and salmon eggs for a couple dozen decent brookies and five rainbows in deep plunge pool and failing to interest the unidentified very large, light-colored fish, I switched to a size 1 Panther Martin silver-bladed spinner with yellow tail dressing, and before it fully realized it was hooked, I had on the shore a 38", ANCIENT rainbow! I verified the length and took a picture with the camera I brought on a tripod before releasing her, so I did not get a weight, but I will never forget that fantastic afternoon. A stream like that should not have been able to grow a fish that large, but since there were no waterfalls or major obstructions, my guess is that she was a Donaldson or Kamloops stocker who had made her way up years before from the larger stocked river many miles below, of which the stream I was fishing was a tributary.

Anyway, sorry to ramble on so long, it's just that I have not had a chance to talk serious trout fishing for years, as my fishing buddies where I grew up in central NC and here in Virginia are only interested in those ugly, nasty-tasting largemouths!

To finally get to my question, I have never been able to get a satisfactory answer as to why the Cutthroat Trout did not become the mighty hegemon all over the country and world that the rainbow did. From everything I read it almost seems like the Cutthroat might even be a better candidate for establishing populations across the country and in the Appalachians and New England, as it seems to have higher temperature tolerance (a boon in the areas where trout are marginal, but where they are stocked anyway); outperform rainbows in lentic ecosystems, as a large number of the trout stocked for recreation each year are put in lakes instead of streams; can grow to similar sizes; taste just as good (I've never had them, but this is what I have read); are good fighters; and are less picky eaters, more akin to the Brook Trout.

The only reason with which I can come up now is that Rainbows were just lucky to be discovered first and were marketed well, whereas the Cutthroats were either not discovered, or the people who fished for them never had the enterprising idea to raise and market them across the country and world. However, I wonder if I am missing some important factor that makes the Rainbow so dominant and omnipresent, and hope one of y'all will tell me! The wife and I are looking at land for a vacation spot in the NC mountains with a stream that we plan to dam up to create a pond with a running stream feeding into it where trout can breed, and we are thinking about going exotic and stocking Cutthroats (a hatchery in Maryland offers them) instead of Rainbows.
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NBrevitz  
#2 Posted : Monday, May 16, 2016 9:38:49 AM(UTC)
NBrevitz
Rank: Super Fly

Joined: 3/16/2013(UTC)
Posts: 1,529
Man
Location: Lake Elmo, Mn

Thanks: 56 times
Was thanked: 70 time(s) in 57 post(s)
AR-Tenner wrote:
Hi Folks,

I am new to the forum, and can't tell y'all how happy I am to finally find a forum where I can talk trout fishing with like-minded folks. If I might introduce myself, trout have always been far and away my favorite fish to pursue, and despite having lived my whole life in warmwater areas (except for a couple years in northern China where I successfully pursued some stocked rainbows), have gone after trout literally every time I have been in an environment that can support them. I was 5 when I pulled my first rainbow from a small Appalachian creek, and I've been a devotee ever since. I live in northern Virginia and work as an attorney in DC, but y'all better believe while I am looking out my office window at that cityscape my mind is unceasingly wandering to the mountain streams I long to fish. Being from the east I have only really gone after the big three species, but was lucky enough to get a Dolly Varden once on vacation out west, and hope to add the Bull, Cutthroat, Lake, Sunapee, Apache, Golden, and Silver (I bet a few of those are still swimming around in Dublin Pond or Christine Lake) to my list.

My far-and-away best catch, and one I am resigned to possibly never topping was the result of a five-hour bushwhacking hike (no trail) in the freezing rain the day after Thanksgiving when I was 13 up to the very high headwaters of a totally-ignored wild trout stream in southwestern North Carolina, where after drifting grubs and salmon eggs for a couple dozen decent brookies and five rainbows in deep plunge pool and failing to interest the unidentified very large, light-colored fish, I switched to a size 1 Panther Martin silver-bladed spinner with yellow tail dressing, and before it fully realized it was hooked, I had on the shore a 38", ANCIENT rainbow! I verified the length and took a picture with the camera I brought on a tripod before releasing her, so I did not get a weight, but I will never forget that fantastic afternoon. A stream like that should not have been able to grow a fish that large, but since there were no waterfalls or major obstructions, my guess is that she was a Donaldson or Kamloops stocker who had made her way up years before from the larger stocked river many miles below, of which the stream I was fishing was a tributary.

Anyway, sorry to ramble on so long, it's just that I have not had a chance to talk serious trout fishing for years, as my fishing buddies where I grew up in central NC and here in Virginia are only interested in those ugly, nasty-tasting largemouths!

To finally get to my question, I have never been able to get a satisfactory answer as to why the Cutthroat Trout did not become the mighty hegemon all over the country and world that the rainbow did. From everything I read it almost seems like the Cutthroat might even be a better candidate for establishing populations across the country and in the Appalachians and New England, as it seems to have higher temperature tolerance (a boon in the areas where trout are marginal, but where they are stocked anyway); outperform rainbows in lentic ecosystems, as a large number of the trout stocked for recreation each year are put in lakes instead of streams; can grow to similar sizes; taste just as good (I've never had them, but this is what I have read); are good fighters; and are less picky eaters, more akin to the Brook Trout.

The only reason with which I can come up now is that Rainbows were just lucky to be discovered first and were marketed well, whereas the Cutthroats were either not discovered, or the people who fished for them never had the enterprising idea to raise and market them across the country and world. However, I wonder if I am missing some important factor that makes the Rainbow so dominant and omnipresent, and hope one of y'all will tell me! The wife and I are looking at land for a vacation spot in the NC mountains with a stream that we plan to dam up to create a pond with a running stream feeding into it where trout can breed, and we are thinking about going exotic and stocking Cutthroats (a hatchery in Maryland offers them) instead of Rainbows.

Excellent question! I've often wondered the same thing. From my understanding, Rainbows are the predominate stocked Trout in the U.S due to their growth and survival rates in hatcheries. A yearling bow will be 2-3" longer than a yearling Brook or Brown. Cutthroats and Bows will also cross breed, as many of you know, so they aren't good candidates in areas where they would react with Rainbows (essentially anywhere in the NE or Great Lakes area), and they are often outcompeted by Brook Trout out West. In terms of warmer, more marginal streams, I think Browns have the run of those. The only way Cutthroats could become established would be in lake fisheries. As you stated, they perform extremely well in that regard.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
AR-Tenner  
#3 Posted : Monday, May 16, 2016 10:51:36 AM(UTC)
AR-Tenner
Rank: Midge

Joined: 5/15/2016(UTC)
Posts: 8
Location: Virginia

NBrevitz wrote:
AR-Tenner wrote:
Hi Folks,

I am new to the forum, and can't tell y'all how happy I am to finally find a forum where I can talk trout fishing with like-minded folks. If I might introduce myself, trout have always been far and away my favorite fish to pursue, and despite having lived my whole life in warmwater areas (except for a couple years in northern China where I successfully pursued some stocked rainbows), have gone after trout literally every time I have been in an environment that can support them. I was 5 when I pulled my first rainbow from a small Appalachian creek, and I've been a devotee ever since. I live in northern Virginia and work as an attorney in DC, but y'all better believe while I am looking out my office window at that cityscape my mind is unceasingly wandering to the mountain streams I long to fish. Being from the east I have only really gone after the big three species, but was lucky enough to get a Dolly Varden once on vacation out west, and hope to add the Bull, Cutthroat, Lake, Sunapee, Apache, Golden, and Silver (I bet a few of those are still swimming around in Dublin Pond or Christine Lake) to my list.

My far-and-away best catch, and one I am resigned to possibly never topping was the result of a five-hour bushwhacking hike (no trail) in the freezing rain the day after Thanksgiving when I was 13 up to the very high headwaters of a totally-ignored wild trout stream in southwestern North Carolina, where after drifting grubs and salmon eggs for a couple dozen decent brookies and five rainbows in deep plunge pool and failing to interest the unidentified very large, light-colored fish, I switched to a size 1 Panther Martin silver-bladed spinner with yellow tail dressing, and before it fully realized it was hooked, I had on the shore a 38", ANCIENT rainbow! I verified the length and took a picture with the camera I brought on a tripod before releasing her, so I did not get a weight, but I will never forget that fantastic afternoon. A stream like that should not have been able to grow a fish that large, but since there were no waterfalls or major obstructions, my guess is that she was a Donaldson or Kamloops stocker who had made her way up years before from the larger stocked river many miles below, of which the stream I was fishing was a tributary.

Anyway, sorry to ramble on so long, it's just that I have not had a chance to talk serious trout fishing for years, as my fishing buddies where I grew up in central NC and here in Virginia are only interested in those ugly, nasty-tasting largemouths!

To finally get to my question, I have never been able to get a satisfactory answer as to why the Cutthroat Trout did not become the mighty hegemon all over the country and world that the rainbow did. From everything I read it almost seems like the Cutthroat might even be a better candidate for establishing populations across the country and in the Appalachians and New England, as it seems to have higher temperature tolerance (a boon in the areas where trout are marginal, but where they are stocked anyway); outperform rainbows in lentic ecosystems, as a large number of the trout stocked for recreation each year are put in lakes instead of streams; can grow to similar sizes; taste just as good (I've never had them, but this is what I have read); are good fighters; and are less picky eaters, more akin to the Brook Trout.

The only reason with which I can come up now is that Rainbows were just lucky to be discovered first and were marketed well, whereas the Cutthroats were either not discovered, or the people who fished for them never had the enterprising idea to raise and market them across the country and world. However, I wonder if I am missing some important factor that makes the Rainbow so dominant and omnipresent, and hope one of y'all will tell me! The wife and I are looking at land for a vacation spot in the NC mountains with a stream that we plan to dam up to create a pond with a running stream feeding into it where trout can breed, and we are thinking about going exotic and stocking Cutthroats (a hatchery in Maryland offers them) instead of Rainbows.

Excellent question! I've often wondered the same thing. From my understanding, Rainbows are the predominate stocked Trout in the U.S due to their growth and survival rates in hatcheries. A yearling bow will be 2-3" longer than a yearling Brook or Brown. Cutthroats and Bows will also cross breed, as many of you know, so they aren't good candidates in areas where they would react with Rainbows (essentially anywhere in the NE or Great Lakes area), and they are often outcompeted by Brook Trout out West. In terms of warmer, more marginal streams, I think Browns have the run of those. The only way Cutthroats could become established would be in lake fisheries. As you stated, they perform extremely well in that regard.


Thanks a lot, and good thoughts! I have heard good things about the Cutbow, and also am well aware about how Rainbows tend to dominate streams where the two live. I was not aware of the Rainbow having the best growth rates, though. I would have thought Browns would take that prize, but that has to be a huge factor in favor of the Rainbow. I was thinking of the Cutthroat from the rather narrow perspective of an Appalachian stream with a large pond (a few acres) formed by a dam further down it, that would be started as a clean slate with no other fish in it.

Also, LOVE that Robert Travers quote. I repeat it to myself daily while in my corner office in this urban hellscape!
NBrevitz  
#4 Posted : Monday, May 16, 2016 10:09:16 PM(UTC)
NBrevitz
Rank: Super Fly

Joined: 3/16/2013(UTC)
Posts: 1,529
Man
Location: Lake Elmo, Mn

Thanks: 56 times
Was thanked: 70 time(s) in 57 post(s)
AR-Tenner wrote:

Thanks a lot, and good thoughts! I have heard good things about the Cutbow, and also am well aware about how Rainbows tend to dominate streams where the two live. I was not aware of the Rainbow having the best growth rates, though. I would have thought Browns would take that prize, but that has to be a huge factor in favor of the Rainbow. I was thinking of the Cutthroat from the rather narrow perspective of an Appalachian stream with a large pond (a few acres) formed by a dam further down it, that would be started as a clean slate with no other fish in it.

Also, LOVE that Robert Travers quote. I repeat it to myself daily while in my corner office in this urban hellscape!

Hatcheries are all about quick, mass production of fish. That's why Rainbows are the predominant lake stocked trout in the U.S. Brown Trout actually grow slower than Brook Trout in their first year of life. Afterwards they do grow faster, but not at the rate you would expect. They're much longer lived. Max age of a Driftless Brookie is about 6, with very few 8 YO grey beards in there. Browns can exceed 12-15 years of age in the right circumstances.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
Skimmer  
#5 Posted : Wednesday, May 18, 2016 8:01:41 PM(UTC)
Skimmer
Rank: Caddis Fly

Joined: 2/25/2015(UTC)
Posts: 233
Location: WI

Was thanked: 5 time(s) in 3 post(s)
I love cutties.
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