I was fishing on a spot on the North Island West Coast in a river that is reputed for sea run trout. The river had both brown and rainbow trout. It was late summer and the river was fresh after a flood from rain. The fish I caught displayed the fighting characteristics of a sea trout (brown) and were completely silver and seemed to be waiting in pools to go upriver. Rainbow Trout I have caught further upriver have their strong freshwater colours and are often solitary. The only diffrence was these had spots on their tails (like Rainbow Trout) and seemed similar compared to pictures of steelhead trout. NIWA says we do not get sea run rainbows in NZ. Are these steelhead or maybe just a colour variation?
I have caught rainbows within 100m of the rakaia mouth!!..the first one only revealed itself as a bow once it had been dead an hour or two..it displayed a very light and metallic crimson slash along it’s flanks.