The Spin-n-Glo: A Must Have For Trophy Winter Steelhead

By Bill Herzog


Whenever discussions are started about which techniques produce the biggest steelhead, winter after winter, three lures always rise to the top: Plugs, spoons, and Spin-n-Glos.

The reasons those three styles of lures get big fish is they have more imparted action than all others. The Spin-n-Glo, however, is the most versatile. Spin-n-Glos have been getting bit by state record fish for 60 years in both the U.S. and Canada.

Spin-n-Glos, unlike other trophy steelhead lures, can be fished in any type of water due to their terrific buoyancy. An expanded polystyrene body gives the Spin-n-Glo tremendous lift, so when baits, beads and heavy hooks are added there is zero decline in action, attraction or staying well off the bottom, right in the line of sight of resting/travelling fish. They can be slipped through narrow, deep slots, under structure like tree limbs, can be swung like a spoon across wide sections of tail-outs and side-drifted from jet sleds and drift boats.

My favorite trophy presentation is drift fishing. Quartering the Spin-n-Glo on a tight line swing below and across right along the bottom has produced more giant steelhead than any other technique, personally, than any other. Large male steelhead- the real big boys- are territorial and the Spin-n-Glo with its noisy, spinning, bright wobble is just the ticket to trigger an aggressive strike.

Classic terminal riggings for Spin-n-Glos start with a weighting system like Slinkies or pencil lead off a 3-way swivel. From there, adjust weight to keep the Spin-n-Glo lightly touching bottom but still able to smoothly travel along downstream with current. Clear monofilament or fluorocarbon leaders from 24 to 36 inches are ideal.


Choosing the right size and color of Spin-n-Glo goes a long way to attracting steelhead. Water conditions tell which colors and sizes to use. Here are some guidelines when choosing rigging options/sizes/colors I’ve followed for 40 years hunting oversized steelhead.

For low, clear/unlimited visibility, choose #14s (smallest) or #12s in PLR (pearl-pink); PPT (pearl-pink tiger); GPUR (glitter purple) in white standard wing or PLR-BL (pearl pink) and BMAG-BL (Black Magic) in black wing.

For that “dialed in” green dropping condition we all love (visibility from 3 to 6 feet), when steelhead are moving and at their most aggressive, choices become wider, but some excellent pics for “perfect” water are #10s and #8s in: MSPK (metallic silver pink); CER (cerise); FL (flame red); RR (rocket red); PLUM (peach luminous); FLCH (half flame red/half chartreuse) and CL (chartreuse w/red spots).

When rivers run high or feature limited visibility (from 1 to 2-1/2 feet) now is the time to go up in size and brightness. Try #6 or #4 in: LUM (glow); LUSL (luminous/hot red); BGFT (blue glow/flame tiger) or the Original Color of the first Spin-n-Glo, the LUSP, Glow with flame orange spots.


Under low, clear (unlimited visibility) conditions, rig #14s and #12s with 8 to 10-pound test and #4 to #2 octopus style hooks. Under “dialed in” conditions, with sizes #10 to #8, rig 12 to 15-pound test and #1 or #1/0 hooks. When choosing the larger Spin-n-Glo for limited visibility, pick 15 to 20-pound leaders.

Because Spin-n-Glos rotate, bearings like plastic beads are the only option to prevent leader twist and allow optimum imparted action to your lure. Two to 3mm beads for smaller sizes; 3mm to 4mm beads for #10s and #8s and 4mm to 6mm beads for the larger Spin-n-Glos. Bead colors are can be no more than good ol’ plain red but luminous (glow) beads add some attraction in limited visibility. One to two beads added between the Spin-n-Glo body and the eye of the hook are all you need.

Spin-n-Glos don’t just twirl, give off vibrations and pop with color, they do something most drift bobbers cannot. Like their trophy steelhead attracting friends the plug and spoon, they wobble. Not wildly, but a subtle wobble that compliments and draws additional attention to an already superstar steelhead lure. And hang on tight when a steelhead decides to strike your Spin-n-Glo, takes are never subtle and qualify for some of the most ferocious grabs in steelhead fishing!

Worden’s Spin-n-Glo has been the gold standard not only for trophy steelhead, but for all steelhead fishing since Elvis first entered the building. Make the Spin-n-Glo your first choice for cold water steelhead fishing this winter!

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