Thursday, December 11, 2008

Okay, starting to feel a little more like my old self! Going fishing more often and actually posting more than once per year!

Early start in the morning to try a larger river here on the Olympic Peninsula. Action wasn't hot, but there were fish being caught. Hooked 2 fish, landed one steelhead on a sandshrimp tail behind a small spin-n glo drift fishing. As always the one I lost seemed MUCH larger but I guess that's how fishing goes.

As I was heading back home, I notice a LOT of cars on the highway. Just about then I get a call Charlie my fishing sensei for Washington and he says "so ya going clamming?"

What people from Alaska might not realize is that here in Washington State, I think razor clam is the most popular single activity in the state. In Alaska the limit is 60 per person and you can dig them at any low tide. In Washington the limit is 15 and we dig maybe 4 days per month from late fall to spring.

I will say that I think the clams here in Washington are sweeter for some reason though they tend to be smaller.
I didn't do it at all my first four years but lately I have gone about 4 times in the past 3 months. I am embarrassed to say this but I can open the garage door and be digging in 5 minutes and I still didn't take advantage of it. I am so glad that I am looking for a new line of work!

Clams and steelhead in a day! Nice! Maybe I should go lasso the deer in my front yard and we would have it all. Surf and Turf....Nah, better stick to the seafood!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Okay, I am sore puppy. Hiking nearly 7 miles in 2 days to catch one steelhead was a bummer in some ways but really cool in others.

Now that I have a bit more time I may as well post. The month of December has seen little rain in Western Washington. After 4 years of complaining about too much rain here, this year there isn't enough.

With the low water, i had to go to a major river system to see if I couldn't get my steelhead fix in for the day. I fished a large glacial river in Western Washington and managed a 6 pound hatchery steelhead. It was nice in several ways. First it was my first fish out of this particular river. and second, it was the first steelhead I caught on a drift rig. That's basically a corky and weight cast into the main river and bounced along the bottom from shore. Third, it was my first ever steelhead I caught on sandshrimp with the added bonus that it was sandshrimp I dug myself.

I wish someone would sell them around here. The closes place I know of is in the town of Montesano which is 45 minutes in the wrong direction. Knowing that steelhead (and salmon too) love them, I built my own sandshrimp gun, and here is picture of what they look like. The single sand shrimp I think is a female. the males have one monster claw on them. Pretty cool stuff.

Spent close to an hour getting 3 dozen of them today but the tides weren't right. You can by them for something like 3 dollars a dozen so I am not sure its worth the effort. But if you can't buy them, ya gotta dig them! I know for the locals, this is nothing new. but for us Alaskans, it's definitely different. I should take a few dozen or so back to Alaska during the salmon season and see if they wouldn't work. hmmmm....

Monday, December 08, 2008

WOOHOO! Happily unemployed! First time since I was 14 years old that I wasn't either in school or working. While sonner than later I need to find a job, I am going fishing every chance I get!

Well unlike in Alaska, the primetime for fishing in Western Washington is right now in December.

Since November 22, I have been fishing 7 times, catching fish on 5 occasions with two of times keeping two fish limits. All really nice hatchery run steelhead from 6 to 12 pounds. Trying to get as much of the steelhead fishing in as I can always catch salmon when and if I get back to Alaska which I am trying to do right now.

I have been focusing on small streams mainly using a float and bait or jig combination. My wife deosn't allow me to take the nice digital camera so not too many pics, but it has been a blast. The fish fight like crazy and to watch a bobber go down, set th hook, and a 10 pound silver streak blasts out of the water is something pretty dang cool. I'll try to update more often, but here's a pic of one of the fish I recently landed.

Oh yeah, this summer I did manage to land my personal best Coho of 19.5 pounds. Though the fish are large in Alaska, the Coho/silvers are larger down here in Washington. This one was caught trolling 7 miles off shore, directly west of my house.