Sunday, June 27, 2010

Fishing in Valdez

Yesterday we got up at 0 dark thirty to go fishing.  Oh wait, it wasn’t dark because it never gets dark here.  At least I’ve never seen it dark.  Anyway, we had to get up at 4:30 IN THE MORNING in order to go fishing at 6:00 IN THE MORNING!!!  It was raining too!!  Of all the days we’ve been here we picked the worst one to go fishing.  I filled up with coffee and a breakfast sandwich and off to the marina we went.  Our Captain wasn’t there yet but showed up soon and off we went.  There were 3 others besides Rod and I.  Ed, our friend, Hannah, a local Alaskan who won this trip in a drawing last year, and Larry, another Alaskan from Fairbanks.  Since we were going 70 miles out past the Prince William Sound and into the Gulf of Alaska it was going to take 3 hours to get there.

Leaving the marina

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The scenery was still quite beautiful

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The water was pretty rough and the wind was COLD.  As soon as we anchored in our spot Ed put a line out and almost immediately caught a HUGE halibut.  Steve (our captain) estimated it to be about 100 pounds because it was about 60 inches in length.  That’s how they guess the weight.  Steve had to bang it on the head with his little Billy club because a fish that big would flap all over and potentially could harm someone.

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Ed put his line out again and again had another halibut.  Not quite as big but a keeper anyway.  Ed had already caught his limit of two.  We thought we were going to have a fantastic day fishing.  Unfortunately that wasn’t the case because for 2 hours we fished this spot and nobody caught a single fish.  So Steve took us to another spot.  This one was WAY better!!  We were catching fish after fish after fish.  Poor Rod though was only catching tiny 15 pounders and had to throw them back.  My first one was pretty small and had to be thrown back also.  But the next one was about 40 pounds and definitely a keeper!!

One of the many little ones Rod caught

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My first ever halibut I caught.  He threw it back  :(

By the way, Steve didn’t get any awards for his personality…

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This one I got to keep!!  Yes, it really was that cold!

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Everybody got to keep two fish each.  Ed, Rod and I decided to combine ours and split it up between us.    We ended up 106.9 pounds so Ed & Mary Jo got 53 pounds and Rod and I got 53 pounds.  They do everything for you here.  They filet it, skin it, freeze it and ship it if you want.  We’re shipping 25 pounds of it to Kebra to keep for us until we get back down to the lower 48 (don’t I sound like a local?).   We still have salmon to catch so we need room in the freezer for that too.

After fishing for hours it was time to head back

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Mary Jo was waiting for us

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Our total catch of the day

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Our fishing buddies

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Jim was great to filet ALL of our fish for us!!

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Mary Jo had a big pot of chili waiting for us and boy did it ever warm up our cold, cold bodies.  After having dinner we headed home and slept until 9:00 this morning!!!  Today we have to go pick up our bounty of fish and off to the grocery store.  I think tonight’s dinner will be, hmmm, let’s see….

8 comments:

LakeConroePenny,TX said...

Oh, what a lovely day you had.
Thanks for sharing the great pictures and commentary, too.
Happy Trails, Penny, TX

Leno said...

Well, I got a chill just reading and seeing the pictures. I needed that, with the heat index over 100 every day here..
Glad you had luck and enjoy that fish.

Anonymous said...

Excellent Deb I don't know why we didn't think of doing that when we were there. Next time for sure. What a great memory.

Missing you guys

Brenda

Happytrails said...

What an awesome experience!! :)
Glad it was a great day for you all.

Mike & Gerri (happytrails)
http://freedom2roll.blogspot.com

JB said...

You know there is a little known tax in Canada, if you are transiting the country you need to mail 10 pounds of Halibut to someone you know who has a farm near Dogpound.

Jenny Johnson said...

Sounds as if you had a wonderful trip despite the weather -- I am certainly enjoying your trip with you---keep an eye out for that motorcycle with TN plates and if you have any extra fish you don't know what to do with send them to Jenny JM in TN
Have fun!!!

azcoug said...

Why were you fishing for midget halibut?

Jim and Dee said...

Those are BIG fish from what I've ever seen around here. lol What a wonderful time. Thanks for the pictures.