We are heading north today on Chatham Strait to our King salmon spot. Last year we caught our one and only King Salmon here. We have struggled over the past few years with salmon fishing. Jeff says we are like a one year old bear in a salmon stream just flopping around without catching anything. To fish for salmon, you need to use down riggers which are essentially a heavy lead ball attached to a thin wire cable that pulls your lure down to 60 feet or more depending on what depth the salmon are located. We have been reluctant to drill and mount a down rigger base to our nice teak cap-rail so we have always used the dinghy for salmon fishing. This has limited us to fishing only near our anchorages. This winter we found an adaptor for our down rigger which fits in our large rod holder on the back deck stanchion. With this addition hopefully we will be able to fish for salmon from Idyll Time.
Reaching the channel markers for the bay, we see a whale fishing the entrance. A salmon soon jumps. These are good signs. Several charter boats are here trolling. We soon have our Scotty down rigger deployed and join in with the other fishing boats. It seems to be working fine and our herring bait is now residing at 60 feet. It certainly is more comfortable fishing from the back deck than the dinghy.
We troll for several hours along the north shoreline at the 100 foot drop off without getting a single strike. The other fishing boats don’t appear to be catching anything either. Around 5pm the boat next to us has strike. A few seconds later our line trips and it is Fish On! We have a few minutes of pandemonium as we haven’t yet perfected our fishing technique. It wasn’t pretty, but we soon have the fish netted and aboard. Our King is quickly measured as you are only allowed to keep ones 28” or longer. Ours measures 31” so we are good. We could continue fishing as our out of state license limit is currently one King per person per day for a total of four per year. We are happy with the one fish and decide to call it a day.
Just around the corner is our anchorage. Our salmon weighs in at 13.5 pounds. He is not as big as some but we are happy to have caught a King. Friends of ours caught a 45 pound king the other day. We will be back out tomorrow to try again.
Well…. We have had a change of plans. As we were pulling anchor to head back out fishing the next morning our inverter gave us a high temperature alarm. The inverter is a necessary piece of equipment aboard the boat. It takes 12 volt battery power and converts it to 125 volts AC just like in your house. This allows us to run our refrigerator and other household appliances. Luckily we have two brand new Maginum inverters aboard that we were planning on installing this fall. We reluctantly abandon our King Salmon fishing and make a two day run back to Petersburg. Devren at Homeport Electronics worked us in to his busy schedule and spent two days installing our new inverters. Thank you Devren!!! All is now good aboard Idyll Time.
While in Petersburg , we learn that the King Salmon limits for non residents will be changing on July 7th. Due to the low number of Salmon this year, non residents will now only be allowed one King per person per year. This means we can catch only one more for the rest of the season. Our King stamp cost us $100 each in addition to the State of Alaska fishing listens. At that time we were allowed four Kings per person per year. Anyone can do the math to see that these Kings are expensive fish. Jeff says we would be better off going to Costco. The thrill of catching a big King is worth the $100 fee. We will be heading back out tomorrow to look for that last king. Thanks for following along.