For the first time EVER, I try feeder kings out of Homer. I had gotten intel from various sources that tell me the Kings are close to the spit. Sources say troll from Land's End Hotel out to the Green Buoy.
So is it winter yet? I guess not. I think even here in Alaska they consider October as late autumn. When is winter? Officially its Dec 21. But this is Alaska. I think November is considered winter here. So I can't claim to have caught a winter king yet. But this year I have caught a Spring King (May), Summer king (July), now a fall King in October! Only one more season to go!
But with the recent weather, I dress for winter fearing the worst. Check the forecast and its only calling for one footers. Really? This time of year? I had been SUPER excited about trying Kings in the winter time. My imagination probably got the better part of me and I was thinking it might be my version of the Deadliest Catch but with a kayak and Kings instead of crab.
So I arrive in Homer and I stare across the water in disbelief. Maybe I missed the ocean somehow because this looks a LOT more like a lake. I have to say it was probably the first time EVER that I was just a little disappointed that the conditions were so good. I had psyched myself up for a rodeo in 3 to 5 foot swells with snow falling around me. Instead I got perfectly flat, calm, and sunny. I definitely had too many layers of clothes on! Oh well, they say you should dress for immersion in the water and not the air temperature. That's good advice for anyone thinking about kayak fishing.
I pass a 14 or so foot inflatable and chat with the folks. They had landed two nice kings early. They took a picture of me and my kayak as proof to the people who had said they were crazy for trying this in their inflatable that there were other people who had fish fever worse! lol.
So I start fishing in 65 to 120 feet of water trying to stay in the bottom 25% of the water column. Don't see much bait so I peddled out toward the birds. How do the birds know there is bait 100 feet down? Amazing. As soon as I see bait on the sonar I am hooked up! OH YEAH! First fish ever on my new downrigger set up. It's Heavy...it's not fighting...ARGH...it's a cod. Well at least I caught something.
About an hour later I start marking some bait. I immediately get hit! FISH ON!!!! Hmm...it's not very big...but it's fast...it's a KING! A tiny one...maybe 5 or 6 pounds max. Well the feeder kings I caught this spring were awesome so I decided to keep it. Besides, I might not catch anything else and I drove 8 hours! Had to bring something back...or so the thought process went.
10 minutes later my line pops out of the downrigger and its FISH ON! This one is better. You can tell right away. It's not a halibut. Zipping around too much and no headshakes. Hmm..seems pretty heavy! YEEHAW! I got a REAL king! Maybe 20 pounds. So I limit out. AMAZING.
When I opened up the fish, they had fish that I had never seen before. They looked like some type of smelt. Maybe it was a capelin which I have seen before. Smaller than red label herring. Two or three time fatter than a sand lance. Interesting.
Well what a great day. You know it's a great day or I am just psycho when the only complaint was the weather was TOO NICE. I WILL be back. The Homer winter king derby is MINE! ...if they are close...lol. I can't wait till next years Anchor Point Salmon derby. I think I will have it dialed n by then. This downrigger thing is going to not only hammer the kings, but it is going to SLAY the halibut in the waters off Deep Creek to Anchor Point.