Monday, July 02, 2007

The One that Got Away - Fishing #1 

We fished on the Russian River in the Kenai Peninsula in AK, "our spot" (really our friends' (Mike and Diana) spot). They've been coming here for years). Water temperature is about 34 degrees and those of you who fish know you go early. In this river, you either walk to midstream or fish from the bank on the far side. Usually the sockeye salmon are plentiful this time of year.

I'd heard stories about "the one that got away" but never really understood. This fishing deal is a new experience - my first attempt at fishing is salmon fishing in Alaska - how lucky can one get?! June 16th was Day 1 for me. My friend Mike taught me how to cast. The river wasn't too crowded and it took about two hours to catch my first salmon. All three of us legally hooked salmon but many got away - either lost when pulling them to the bank or they were smart enough to wiggle free while in the river.

Mike and his wife Diana caught their allotted three fish per person in less than two hours. It took me longer - maybe three hours to catch two fish. I gave up on number three after bruising my right hand trying to stop an improperly caught fish that ran out the reel. Back to back hassles with a scared fish pulling your line is no fun. I'll try the 17th.

We used the cleaning tables located at strategic points in the river to fillet the fish (Mike) and pull the pin bones. We returned to our bed and breakfast to complete the job. All in all we cleaned, deboned, filleted, cut, freezer wrapped, and froze eight salmon. A good day's work, fun and learning experience.