16 August 2011, 02:04Paul H
Good day on the water
I try and go out on one fishing trip with co-workers each year, didn’t manage one last year, and finally managed to coordinate a few folks schedules this year. We headed out of Whittier into the middle of Prince William Sound. I’ve done fairly well on most species of fish over the years, but halibut had continually stumped me. The sound is mostly very deep water, some areas you are a few hundred yards from shore and in 2000’ of water. So finding the structure halibut favor in water one would reasonably fish with a pole is a challenge. A former neighbor gave me a couple of his fishing spots before the Coast Guard transferred him to Kodiak earlier this summer. The forecast was a small craft advisory on Thursday, with some remaining winds Friday morning.
We launched a little after 8 am and headed out. Following seas aren’t that bad, and with the winds coming down off the mountains there wasn’t much fetch, so about a 2’ chop. I tried to match up my gps chart with the paper chart to figure out my neighbors shrimping spot. I dropped 3 pots, then realized his spot was a bit further out, so dropped the remaining 2 pots there. Then the 2 hour run to the fishing hole.
I tried drifting over the hole, but the tide was ripping too strong, so we anchored up. We jigged and soaked bait for a bit, and other then the occasional bite, no fish landed. So we pulled anchor and tried s a slightly different spot.
It’s a pity the photos don’t do justice. Not only did we have a rare sunny t-shirt sunburn day, but there were whales spouting in the distance, and we were surrounded by mountains. The water was pretty darn calm, now all we needed was some fish. We did manage a few, 4 halibut to be precise, but kinda disappointing for five people fishing.
So after a few hours of slow fishing, we pulled anchor and decided to give some of my rockfish and lingcod spots a try.
That also proved lackluster, I did manage two yellow eye rockfish and my son got a quillback. There were silver salmon jumping all around us, but nobody could get a hook to stick in one. One of the yellow eyes was pretty decent. With a high speed reel, they come up pretty fast from 300’, and needless to say the decompression is a bit much on their swim bladder
After a few hours of mostly fruitless fishing we headed back. We tried the tip of one of the islands for some silver salmon. I managed to hook a small one, and pulled up a few flounder off the bottom. The clouds started to roll in and the wing picked up so we figured it was time to call it a day.
We motored back to where the shrimp pots were dropped and pulled them. The first two pots yielded my best pull over, about 3 gallons of shrimp for the 2 pots.
The last 3 pots brought our total up to right about 5 gallons of shrimp. The only bummer was splitting that 5 ways. Still, enough shrimp to make for a nice stir fry with the yellow eye on Saturday.
Need to head back and play Bubba Gump before the season closes September 15th.
18 August 2011, 21:21Mikelravy
I love rockfish I stuff them with crabmeat and bake. Out of this world good eating.
21 August 2011, 07:49TCLouis
Everyday on the water with fine weather conditions is a GREAT day.
Time spent with ones son is icing on the cake of life