Andrew and I rarely get to fish together since he works two jobs. He’s been with me to Keith and Jane’s to dipnet and to Roy and Brenda’s to net fish in the river. We’ve boat fished a few times. The most we’d caught was 3 cohos a few years ago.
I told him I’d caught some fish down the channel, and he said if I went on Saturday morning he’d like to go as he didn’t work til noon. I had Salvation Army store donation collection duty, but thought we could get up and start at sunrise and fish til midmorning and then come in for our job commitments.
I got up at 430 and made two thermoses of coffee and a couple egg and cheese sandwiches for the boat. Andrew showed up right on time and we launched the boat just before sunrise. We sped down the channel in flat calm waters and clear skies. It was supposed to get up to 70 again today. The September weather has been the best of the summer. Dry and not too hot and calm seas.
I put the gear out on the downriggers and Andrew drove the boat. Then he went back to watch the rods as I took over the wheel. He likes to stand right between the rods and wait for a hit. One rod was at 45 feet with a green hootchie and green flasher and one at 25 feet with with a yellow and red hootchie with a red flasher. We trolled for half an hour or more until we got our first fish on. It was on the 45 ft rod. The second fish was at the same depth, so I moved both rods to 45 feet. Then we got two or three more fish – all on the red flasher set up, so I switched both rods to the same hootchie and flasher.
We had steady fishing over the next couple hours, catching 5 more and losing 4 fish. Andrew just couldn’t keep them on, and I think he wasn’t keeping the pressure on the fish, but maybe I’d have lost them, too. He wanted me to take the fish now so we didn’t lose anymore but I knew he needed to learn. The last few fish were a little bigger. After each fish was landed, I’d break a gill and put the fish on a stringer over the side to bleed. Then I’d clean the fish and put it in the cooler. I was able to keep up with the cleaning to this point.
Then we got a double on. Andrew lost his and I got mine. Then another double. This time, we both landed our fish. Now we had 3 fish on the stringer. A few boats come around from town, after we’d fished all of the early morning by ourselves. We got more fish on. And lost them. One boat had fished around us for awhile, and apparently hadn’t caught anything and left. I got to cleaning the three fish on the stringer. The cooler was overflowing now. Finally, we got the last fish of our 12 fish limit on and landed it. I pulled in the gear, cleaned the last fish, and shut off the kicker. I called over to a family fishing near us who hadn’t caught any. I told them what we were using and how deep we were fishing and asked if they wanted to borrow our gear. They said no, they had the gear and thanks for the tip. By now it was 1030 and time to go to get us both to our jobs by noon.
We ran back to the dock with the fish. I told Andrew to stop and get ice in his car while I drove home with the boat to put the fish in a bigger cooler. I had canned the 5 cohos I caught my last trip last night, and I had all the fish we needed for the summer so I was giving all of mine to him. Andrew soon arrived with ice and we put the fish in the cooler then loaded it in his car. He would ice the fish down and butcher them tonight and get help from Sam and Gloria vac packing them. I think that’s the most cohos I’ve caught on my boat in a day here.