Monday, June 4, 2018

They're just like Veal

Is what MP said when I told her that we were having fresh salmon finally for supper. As I waited for my fishing friends on Saturday I put my planer board out to fish and before I could even snap on the board I felt something bite and's salmon , just a bit on the petite side.
If you've ever wondered what makes salmon the ultimate sport fish well that picture supplies the answer. Ya gotta be aggressive to bite off a project that's almost as big as you are or incredibly stupid....if you were a human that is.  But that guy is a salmon for sure and about the smallest Jack I've ever seen, did I ever tell you about winning a new DeWalt worm drive framing saw for catching a 17 incher in a tournament one time ? So this is how our barbecue looked Saturday night, oh baby was that salmon good.
mmmmm.....maybe you notice that salmon steak doesn't seem to match the previous photo. Well it's one of the wonders of life here at Mile 14, we just make things happen....with a little help from our friends of course. Thanks Jacqi and John for the protein, what a wonderful day of fishing. Here's John with a perfect slot fish.
It was his second fish of the day. The first hit just minutes into the day and that fish ran off line and fought like a sport fish should....then it jumped entirely out of the water making us know for sure that it was way over the slot and then he conveniently released himself....Which brings me to my first tutorial of the year for all you fishing guides that I hope read this. I've been seeing a bunch of my so called 'peers'  get the over slot fish in the net, then power the boat to shore, then get out of the boat and get their ' guide shot' photo releasing the fish with the boat in the background and the fisherman with a big ol smile... Well don't do that boneheads  ! Our goal as a group of Pro's who rely on the resource should be 0 % catch and release mortality.  I realize it's hard to get a good photo of the fish to be released from inside the boat as they have to stay in the water but that go to shore deal takes waaaaay to much time and puts tremendous stress on ol slimey. Just let the darn fish go as fast as possible. Ya know we're kinda lucky to be fishing right now and this new plan we're under can really save the business aspects of our fishery so how's about acting like you work the river for a living and are a real professional. Thank you, the end. Here's a pic of John O fighting one of his two fish.
The fishing has really been quite good . For the lack of boats I see and the difficult conditions with a lot of organic material in the water fouling the line we're all doing really pretty well. Just since they've moved the sonar I've told people that fish counts actually mirror what I'm seeing and on Saturday in the sunshine I figured the counts would be around 200 to 250. Well, they were announced at 117......mmmm....Everybody seemed to be catching some.

Watching the family in the white boat catch a keeper was really fun....So our sonar counts are about 1/2 what they were last year when we had the bait restriction was lifted and the slot size increased. It's hard to say what ADF+G will do but ol guide # 003 here thinks the late spring has the run a bit late which we've seen in other places as well and in the graph below you'll see we're really not doing all that bad compared to the last few years. And the run is behaving normally making the ' bell shaped curve' that we like to see. Also consider that the previous years the sonar counts were ALL of the fish and now they are only the ' large' fish.... So if I'm in charge of the world I say let's keep fishing under the current plan of retention of fish like the one above and release of the best spawners. In the graph 2018 is red.
I too this pic at Kasilof yesterday. The essence of sport fishing, it's beautiful. You're alone with your thoughts. You have the hope of a  fisherman but know the joy is in the pursuit. The water gurgles by and it's so quiet you even think slowly and're part of it. It's you.

No comments:

Post a Comment