Alaska Walkabouts

The adventures of an Alaska Wildlife and Nature Photographer.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

It was a Stormy Summer

Another season of charter work has come and gone for the most part.  I got to drive several different boats and did a lot of fishing charters. There doesn't seem to be any market for glacier tours, photography missions, or anything else except fishing fishing fishing. I bounced from my boat to two other boats, the Meagan Anne, and the Elaine C, when Matt needed me. Fishing charters are high stress. People either love you or hate you depending on how the fishing goes. We all love it when it works and we all hate it when it doesn't. But fishing is mathematical chaos. It doesn't always go well but all you can do is try your best day after day. Severe halibut regulations don't help either. How can someone expect to "fill their freezer" when the limit is effectively one fish? And salmon failed to arrive this season leading to utter failure for both commercial and sport fishermen. Halibut were a bright spot this year although as usual they were hard to find sometimes. The good part of chartering for me is hanging out with Matt, Greg, and many others in Whittier who are like an extended family. The folks at the Inn at Whittier, Shoreside Petroleum, The Wild Catch Cafe, and others made the season much more enjoyable. Although I am not quite done yet, the season is ending fast, and winter is coming. All in all it was a great year. Here are some of the highlights of our catches this past season:

35.5 pound rockfish

A halibut of around 200 pounds


Through it all Storm was a bright spot. He did far better on the boats than I ever dreamed. He could care less about the fish we catch but he has a fascination with the bait and is quite the sneak thief when it comes to getting some of it. And the trash can as well is quite a lure for him. But he is very well behaved and most people love him. They took selfies and snuggled with him a lot. I feared that his long days without a potty break would be hard on him but even 12-hour days didn't seem to faze him. Once in a while, especially on my boat, I am able to nose ashore on a friendly beach and let him off.