Nov
08
Filed Under (Fishing) by Debbie on 08-11-2012

As many of you know, I’ve been struggling with the death of my mom.  Lately this struggle has generated the ‘Bucket List’ for me.  On this bucket list lurks: Ocean Fishing and Salmon Fishing, plus the lure of a fully packed Dungeness Crab!  So this summer, amidst the wretched US economy I’ve begun to pick away at that list.

Luck for me we’ve a friend who’s quite a fisherman.  Bill’s a veteran of WWII, Korea and Vietnan; a marine.  I’d say a retire marine but I really don’t think ‘they’ ever retire.  He offered to introduce me to bottom fishing and I jumped at the chance.

 We set up to go out with Tradewinds.  We arrived in Depot Bay for our 6:30 AM check in at 5:15 AM….well, better early than late.  We sat and chatted in his truck while we waited for everyone to show up.  When the check in time past my buddy, Bill got out and went up to the window to see if there was a note.  Yep, boat check in was at 7:30 AM.  Hummm…off for coffee, one town farther up the coast.  Imagine our surprise when the office called asking if we’d forgotten the 6:30 check in.  This was when they told us there are 2; count them 2 ‘Tradewind’ charter services.  One in Depot Bay and one in Newport.  We flew down the road while they held the boat.

I must say how grateful I was for the loaner coats they have in the office as both Bill and I in our haste to get from the parking lot to the office, left our coats in the truck.  The check in was fast and we raced to the boat.  Once we were aboard they pulled away from the dock.  It was a nice trip over the bar. 

They dropped crab pots on the way to fishing.  The ocean was a bit rolly but not bad for me.  I went armed with ginger snaps just in case as they are supposed to help with sea sickness.  Turned out I did fine but others that didn’t fare so well were happy for my offer of cookies.  I was excited to see a pair of porpoises swim past our boat.  I also was excited to catch fish!  The equipment offered was nicely maintained and ready to use.  While I have to say the sea bass didn’t put up much of a fight it was great to bring them in.  I ended up one fish short of a limit.

I did find myself stuck on the bottom a few times and felt pretty badly at losing their tackle.  The last time I was stuck I tried to dislodge it myself.  I gave a slow pull and felt it break off, gave a turn on the reel and thought, dang still stuck.  I didn’t want to have to call the deck hand again to get me off the bottom.  I tried once more and this time felt the tackle definitely move up.  I started to reel in only to discover a fish on…a big fish!  I’m thinking Ling Cod…

I kept pulling up the pole and reeling as I lowered it and I have to say that fish was really fighting.  It was so exciting for me; with the sky blue and the sun shining, I had hooked into the biggest fish ever for me.  Then he broke the surface, a Chinook salmon!  He ran across the surface of the ocean, water spraying up like a single skier roster tail and with the sun behind me, the fish and water glittered like diamonds in a pirate’s treasure.  It was amazing to catch this fish.  Sadly, the season for barbed hooks had closed and I had to let him go.  But it was awesome; my first charter fishing trip, my first salmon!

Heading back in we pulled the crab pots.  I mean ‘we’ pulled.  Each person who’d also added the crabbing to their charter (me) had to pull their pots up.  My hubby had said they’d have a machine or deck hand that did that.  Nope….I thought I’d never get mine up.  Happy to say I had nearly a limit there too. 

Once back, there is a person who will for a small fee, clean/fillet your fish and if you’ve forgotten a bag to carry it home in you can buy one in the office.  There is also a person who will clean and cook your crab.  Although, I prefer they clean the crab before cooking them.

Newport Tradewinds did a really good job.  I’d happily go out with them again.  If you’re interested in going out with them, you can check out their website.  Bottom fishing and crabbing in Newport was a fun day and tasty dinner!



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