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Ner's Random Musings on a life of interesting insights

a world of interesting factoids about nothing and everything


June 22nd, 2003

fishing, fishing, and more fishing part 1 @ 04:44 pm

We just got back from taking my mom to the airport. That just means I only have two days left in Alaska to enjoy which is kind of sad, but on the same token, I'll be glad to get home as well. Bailey was very sad to see her Grandma go, and was crying quite a bit. We've all grown quite a bond while being here.

I'm going to have to break this entry up into two bits because I have so many pictures to post, and so much to tell about the two fishing trips we've been on first to the Russian River, and next to Anchor Point where we went halibut fishing. I'll first start telling about the Russian, then in the next entry, I'll go over the coolness of halibut fishing. We're planning on going out in a bit to go jetskiing, and hopefully, I"ll get to drive the boat. How cool would that be? Then we're planning on having a huge barbecue where I'm assured Sean can kick some ass with his ribs. Great fun, totally.


On Thursday night we decided we'd try to go and catch some red salmon. These aren't the famous Alaskan King salmon you find in stores a lot in the states, but they all follow the same principal of running. At one time in the year mostly near the beginning of July, to go up the Kenai River and other rivers around Alaska to spawn i.e. reproduce. They aren't really hungry when they run, just teritorrial. So they strike out a lot at hooks and flies that are in the water.

So starts the art of salmon fishing. IT's fly fishing basically. I'm not used to fly fishing, never will be. You basically throw a line in the water, and hope you run into a territorial fish or piss it off enough that it eats your hook. Once you pull it in, it's yours. It's not a good idea to snag the fish as it's illegal. Snagging a fish entails catching a fish whithout hooking it in the mouth. YOu can catch a limit of three on the Russian river a day.

There's your background on salmon fishing. We arrived at the Russian river, which can get quite busy in the fishing season. Many people don't only go to fish, but go to drink and have fun. I liken it to the college football or high school football games 've been too. Some people are really serious fisherman, some are social and get s**tfaced, then fish. That's where we meet Henry. Henry's the first person I've ever met whose a drunk Eskimo or native. And he was drunk let me tell you. He was fery friendly though and very coherent amazingly enough. Too bad I don't have any pictures of him. He introduced himself as Henry "te professionnnnnallll clammer". He proclaimed that he as in fact a professional clammer and he'd tell me how I could be a professional clammer as well. It was only till later that he admitted to being a professional drinker, and I told him that I was not only a professional clammer too but a professional Australian beer drinker too. We shook one professional to another and sasprofessionals do, we coherently exchanged email addresses. He told me to write him as soon as possible so he could tell me how I could get a clam even. I'm going to do it, write the guy, just to see what he says. HOw funny is that. Oh Henry, stop drinking and you'll be on a fast track to something good.

To salmon fish, you have to get ready, and doing that isn't easy. Some spots in the river are easiest gotten to by walking into the middle of the river, so we all strapped on our hip waders and headed out, ready to catch the big one.

Me, Sean and Melissa with our hip boots and other gear getting ready for fishing. A picture with all of us wearing hip waders and the rest of our gear.


To get across the river, you have to ride a ferry which costs like $7 per person just to corss to the other side where you could fish. They could of course build a bridge but that would be too easy. They are just of course trying to make money I'm sure. The ferry is on a cable system which uses the current to drag you across the river one way and they have to crankyou back. It takes about a minute to get back and forth each way. A picture of the Fairy and it's cable system

Now, combat fishing, it's one of the most interesting and amazing things I've ever heard of. I've had to come here several times to fully understand the concept. Because the good fishing spots are few and far between, and there's lots of people many of them tourists, coming to fish, people have to all pack in and try to get the few small spots that are actually possible to get a fish. It's not easy, and some people actually argue to get a spot. You're basically fishing shoulder to shoulder, trying not to hook people with fishing flies or cross lines. It's both fun, and odd at the same time. When you see this picture you'll understand why we call it combat fishing.
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We just got back from taking my mom to the airport. That just means I only have two days left in Alaska to enjoy which is kind of sad, but on the same token, I'll be glad to get home as well. Bailey was very sad to see her Grandma go, and was crying quite a bit. We've all grown quite a bond while being here.

I'm going to have to break this entry up into two bits because I have so many pictures to post, and so much to tell about the two fishing trips we've been on first to the Russian River, and next to Anchor Point where we went halibut fishing. I'll first start telling about the Russian, then in the next entry, I'll go over the coolness of halibut fishing. We're planning on going out in a bit to go jetskiing, and hopefully, I"ll get to drive the boat. How cool would that be? Then we're planning on having a huge barbecue where I'm assured Sean can kick some ass with his ribs. Great fun, totally.

<lj-cut text="Ok, now for fishing, part 1">
On Thursday night we decided we'd try to go and catch some red salmon. These aren't the famous Alaskan King salmon you find in stores a lot in the states, but they all follow the same principal of running. At one time in the year mostly near the beginning of July, to go up the Kenai River and other rivers around Alaska to spawn i.e. reproduce. They aren't really hungry when they run, just teritorrial. So they strike out a lot at hooks and flies that are in the water.

So starts the art of salmon fishing. IT's fly fishing basically. I'm not used to fly fishing, never will be. You basically throw a line in the water, and hope you run into a territorial fish or piss it off enough that it eats your hook. Once you pull it in, it's yours. It's not a good idea to snag the fish as it's illegal. Snagging a fish entails catching a fish whithout hooking it in the mouth. YOu can catch a limit of three on the Russian river a day.

There's your background on salmon fishing. We arrived at the Russian river, which can get quite busy in the fishing season. Many people don't only go to fish, but go to drink and have fun. I liken it to the college football or high school football games 've been too. Some people are really serious fisherman, some are social and get s**tfaced, then fish. That's where we meet Henry. Henry's the first person I've ever met whose a drunk Eskimo or native. And he was drunk let me tell you. He was fery friendly though and very coherent amazingly enough. Too bad I don't have any pictures of him. He introduced himself as Henry "te professionnnnnallll clammer". He proclaimed that he as in fact a professional clammer and he'd tell me how I could be a professional clammer as well. It was only till later that he admitted to being a professional drinker, and I told him that I was not only a professional clammer too but a professional Australian beer drinker too. We shook one professional to another and sasprofessionals do, we coherently exchanged email addresses. He told me to write him as soon as possible so he could tell me how I could get a clam even. I'm going to do it, write the guy, just to see what he says. HOw funny is that. Oh Henry, stop drinking and you'll be on a fast track to something good.

To salmon fish, you have to get ready, and doing that isn't easy. Some spots in the river are easiest gotten to by walking into the middle of the river, so we all strapped on our hip waders and headed out, ready to catch the big one.

<center> Me, Sean and Melissa with our hip boots and other gear getting ready for fishing. <img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20003.jpg" alt="A picture with all of us wearing hip waders and the rest of our gear." align="top"> </center>

To get across the river, you have to ride a ferry which costs like $7 per person just to corss to the other side where you could fish. They could of course build a bridge but that would be too easy. They are just of course trying to make money I'm sure. The ferry is on a cable system which uses the current to drag you across the river one way and they have to crankyou back. It takes about a minute to get back and forth each way. <img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20004.jpg" alt="A picture of the Fairy and it's cable system" align="bottom">

Now, combat fishing, it's one of the most interesting and amazing things I've ever heard of. I've had to come here several times to fully understand the concept. Because the good fishing spots are few and far between, and there's lots of people many of them tourists, coming to fish, people have to all pack in and try to get the few small spots that are actually possible to get a fish. It's not easy, and some people actually argue to get a spot. You're basically fishing shoulder to shoulder, trying not to hook people with fishing flies or cross lines. It's both fun, and odd at the same time. When you see this picture you'll understand why we call it combat fishing. <img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20005.jpg" alt="" <align="middle">

There's a cool place near the river just for handicap people. This is where I use my blindness to its advantages. Though I didn't actually catch a fish, I still got in a good place right by the river where theoretically I could catch something. Here's me and Sean at this special place. <img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20006.jpg" alt="" align="bottom">scene picture, the river
<center>
<img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20007.jpg" alt="" align="top"> Faye and Melissa trying to find a spot in the madness. Looks of awe and wonder plastered on their faces, will they find a spot?

<img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20008.jpg" alt="" align="top"> Melissa's trying to fit in, can she do it with the big belly, let's see.
</center>

<hr>

The air and water were cool and we hoped to catch something; it was an ideal fishing night. I had a difficult time getting my casting going correctly. My wrist, still painful after surgery, just wasn't doing the job for me, and I didn't actually fish much. It was just too difficult for me. So, I did the ideal thing and watched other people fishing. I really wanted to actually catch something but ya can't always catch them unfortunatly. There was a guy who was helping his old grandpa fish and he got like several fish, and he actually got his grandpa's limit, but it took them maybe like two hours to do that. We were only there for like an hour. <img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20010.jpg" alt="A picture of me and Sean fishing" align="bottom">

Faye had never caught anything except for little fish in Arizona where you "just cast out and let it lay there for a while". She just watched other people and definitely got the hang of "cast and jerk" as they all call it, something which I was not able to master that night. Here's three pictures of Faye Fishing, or at least trying to.

<center>
<img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20009.jpg" alt="Faye Fishing photo" align="bottom">

<img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20011.jpg" alt="Faye Fishing again, determination on her face" align="bottom">

<img src="http://comp.uark.edu/~ner/salmon/salmon%20012.jpg" alt="A close up photo of Faye Fishing" align="bottom">
</center>

All in all we had a great night. ISue, I got frustrated, but that comes with the territory of fishing. Some times you just don't get lucky. All that counts though is that we had a great time, and we sure did. We were glad to get back though as we hopped the very last ferry back home, and went straight to bed, ready for more fun which was to come.

</lj-cut>
And that's where I"ll leave you, I must go and go swimming/whatever else. Then if I'm not sufficiently tired, I'll type about halibut fishing, which I'm paying for today, damn it was fun. Again, I have great pictures of that too, and a great story too. Two days and life will return to boring normal, arg. More later.
 
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Comments

 
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From:sunnyblue
Date:June 22nd, 2003 07:35 pm (UTC)
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I love that you are attaching photos in your journal! They help me better understand what you are describing. Just thought I'd note my appreciation of the pics. Have you sent me a post card? Course, i guess I can't complain if you haven't, what with all these great pics and whatnot. Hope your trip continues to be a fun one.
[User Picture Icon]
From:djner
Date:June 24th, 2003 08:34 am (UTC)
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I'll keep posting pictures when I get a spare moment. Maybe writing before packing isn't too good of an idea??? Thanks again for your coments.
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From:mathgoddess
Date:June 23rd, 2003 07:49 am (UTC)
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Wow, ner, what an amazing trip! Thanks for sharing it with us. :)
[User Picture Icon]
From:djner
Date:June 24th, 2003 08:33 am (UTC)
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Wait till you see my big ass fish. If I can muster up some energy, I'll write, then pack, then start the huge ass trip back home, then write again, then go back to normal life until I travel again. Wow, what a busy man I am.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:June 26th, 2003 10:26 am (UTC)
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ass, ass, ass, ass, jackass....
[User Picture Icon]
From:djner
Date:June 26th, 2003 01:11 pm (UTC)
(Link)
I must preceed that comment by saying that my dad is in fact a jackass. And hey, I enjoy using the word ass in my journal, so deal.

Ner's Random Musings on a life of interesting insights

a world of interesting factoids about nothing and everything