Matt Marinkovich’s weekly At Sea Diary entry is a popular feature of the National Fisherman Web site, and now you can post your own reflections on Matt’s experiences fishing in the Pacific Northwest and North Pacific.
Written by Jen Finn
Wednesday, April 4, 2012 — On our run in from the fishing grounds on the morning of April 4, we decided that since the boat wasn't going to go fishing until the strong tides subsided, we could go home if we liked; which I did. So for the first time in Y-E-A-R-S, I spent Easter with the family; it sure would be nice to make a habit out of THAT!
We returned to Seward late night on Monday, April 9, and were back in the baithouse the next morning, as if nothing had happened. We headed out for fishing on Wednesday afternoon. Our first fishing effort was directed at halibut, and in the three strings we set out we caught most of our remaining quota. Now our sites were set on wrapping up our blackcod quota, of which we still had a decent chunk left. With good fishing, we could catch most of it, especially considering we had three full days (nine strings total) in which to catch the fish.
Blackcod fishing WAS GOOD! We were a boat load of happy fishermen, fishing in nice weather, and taking bets on how much fish we would have aboard after three days' time. Unfortunately, our parade-of-joy-and-happiness was rained upon on the second morning, when the wind fetched up. By the end of the first string, it was BLOWing. So we decided, even though we had a string all ready to set, to head for town and cut yet another trip short.
I was flat-out pissed — at first — but after I stood at the roller as we hauled back the second string, I was glad we didn't reset the gear. It was downright shitty. My biggest concern at the roller was to keep an eye out on the incoming swells so I didn't get plastered by a nice, big, green wave, or super-splishy-splashy comber.
So we headed to town, late-evening on Sunday, April 14, the wind blowing 30 knots on the side. Fortunately, we had a few fish in the hatch to smoothe our ride — always a good feeling, indeed.
TO BE CONTINUED…
The Southeast Alaska Fishermen’s Alliance recently announced that the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation has awarded the organization a Hollings Grant to reduce whale entanglements in Alaska salmon fisheries by increasing the use of acoustic whale pingers to minimize entanglements in fishing gear.
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