World 800m silver medallist Nick Symmonds just LOVES to fish. Find out why chasing steelheads floats his boat, and why David Rudisha is like a great white shark.

It’s all about Oregon 

"One of the things that has kept me in Oregon for the past 11 years is the fishing. It is phenomenal. I grew up in the Rocky Mountains and my dad taught me to fly fish for trout when I was three years old. When I arrived to live in Oregon I really got into fishing for steelhead and salmon, and some of the salt water species like cod and tuna.

"I’m wired pretty tight. My head is spinning pretty vigorously all day and there are only a few things that can calm my mind down. Running happens to be one of them, and fishing is another. I can sit and stare at a body of water and not feel bored for 12 hours. There are very few things in this life which can keep me sedated like that. I love the adrenaline rush when I’m catching a big fish. It is a real challenge."

Mythical fish

"My favourite fish is the steelhead. They are elusive, almost mythical, in that you sometimes have to wait 20 hours before you see one and when you catch one, they are just an insane fish. They have been out there in the ocean dodging great whites, and when they get into the rivers they really don’t like to be bothered.

"During the off-season I go out five times a week and maybe once a week in the spring. I prefer fishing in the ocean becauseyou never know what you are going to catch – but it is expensive, so 90 per cent of my fishing is in fresh water."


@NickSymmonds: Spanish Mackerel! :D

Angling in Alaska

"My proudest ever catch was my first steelhead. I was aged 17 at the time, up in Alaska with my dad. It was during the time of 9/11 and we had been completely grounded because of what was going on in New York. It was a very sad and emotional time.

"I still have that picture of me with the steelhead. It is very significant for me because it reminds me of a time in world history and also of how I felt that day. I felt really blessed to be out fishing while so much chaos was going on in the world."

If 800m runners were fish…

Me: “I’m going to go with a steelhead because it is my favourite fish. I like it because it is comfortable in a lot of different environments. It swims in freshwater and salt water. I too am a guy who is comfortable in many places whether that be in the States, Europe or Australia.”

David Rudisha: ”He’s got to be a Great White Shark. He is the king. There is nothing bigger or better than him. He devours anything that comes his way and he is the biggest and the strongest. I have a lot of respect for him.”

Mohammad Aman: ”He is like a tuna because a tuna will blow your mind because of its unexpected strength. You don’t necessarily think of a tuna as strong but if you saw a tuna the size of a small car, you would quickly appreciate the strength and power behind it.”

Duane Solomon: “I’d liken him to a tarpon because it is so fast and so powerful. It is really quick and explosive and lean but it perhaps doesn’t have that same strength as some of the other fish.”