Haines Fishing

Ron and I went to Roy’s to fish for sockeye in Haines this weekend. We took the gillnets we cut out of the commercial gillnet Len gave me. Pouring rain here when we left on the ferry, and by the time we got to Haines, nice and partly sunny. Roy met us at the launch ramp, which was right next to the ferry terminal, with his boat, and we transferred the net and gear.

We caught 26 sockeye and a few pinks the first day. We returned to Roy’s house to pressure bleed and clean the fish, then put them on ice for further processing in Juneau. On the second day, we only caught 8 and several pinks. On the way home from fishing, we passed through a side street in Haines. When we got to an intersection on the corner of which lived Roy’s friend Jim, there was a big pile of grizzly bear crap right in the middle of the road.

I bought my first real fillet knife, and was eager to try it out when I got home. These are long, wide knives with scalloping just above the edge, and with a rounded tip. What a difference. The knife glided through the fish, with no sawing necessary. I had my 16 fish done in about 10 minutes. I then cut each fillet in half, and rinsed about six pieces at a time, put them in a draining basket, and then vacuum packed all of them.

I also discovered something this year I learned from Ron – eating the meat left on the backbone after filleting. I’d never done this. It didn’t look like that much flesh. But it is, and it’s delicious. Just put the side on a hot grill, and when one side is done, turn it over and turn of the grill and allow the other side to finish. Wow, is it good. So, I vacuum packed all the frames, too.

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