We have fished the last three days and they have been the best first three days on record. We’re really excited to be off to such a great start!
Two days ago we fished in some pretty rough weather; yesterday was OK and today we tried something new. Instead of fishing our site near the cabin, we gambled on taking the skiff way outside the river into Bering Sea to fish the coast out there. It’s a long way (lots of fuel, time, etc) and if it doesn’t pay off, you have blown it for most of the opening (period of time Fish & Game allows us to fish). The weather is also very likely to be bad and there is no protection. But the gamble paid off today and we caught more fish than almost anyone else. We were the first ones to get out there and only 2 more fishermen showed up. We had a 100 mile stretch of beach almost totally to ourselves. Some sand hill cranes walked the beach pecking at the sand while we set out net about 3pm this afternoon. As the tide rushed in, the waves came over the protective sandbar and where we had been protected and in totally calm water, we were now truly in the open sea. A swell from the stormy weather of the past few days pushed in and we jostled about as the fish rolled over the side.
The trick with fishing on that coast is being close to shore so we’re legal (our inside buoy needs to be 1000 or less from the 18 foot high tide mark), but not soo close that we are stuck in the breakers. We usually have to do some fancy boat work in the breakers and today was no exception. With the boat heavy with fish, it was a chore surfing a wave in with the boat, then spinning it quickly so as to not catch a wave over the side, then holding the bow into the waves. It’s great fun when everything goes well; not so funny when someone goes over their waders or something happens to the boat. It seems we did everything just right and we escaped with a boat full of salmon and no mishaps. We nailed it on the outside beach!
We caught three small kings yesterday. They are beauties!
Today we caught a huge king. This is me filleting it in front of our cabin.