Ebb & Flow Week 10 | August 2, 2018
August 2, 2018 | 1500 Views
“The Seas Were Angry That Day.”
By Deepwater Don
Couple of days ago I called up a friend to ask how he had fared on his trip to a neighbouring lodge last week. He paused for a moment before recalling one of the most famous lines by the character George Costanza from the comedy series Seinfeld.
“The sea was angry that day my friends,” he quipped.
And indeed the seas have been angry since we last spoke…my friends. On the positive side, however, the northwesterly gale-force winds that hammered the entire archipelago from Gwaii Haanas to Langara Island, making for very tough fishing, have calmed considerably and the action appears to have again picked up, although slower than what we have come to expect for this time of year.
Even so, the guides were able to escape the winds somewhat by working shallow water very tight to the shores of Graham Island, Boulder Bay in particular, where they are finding quite a few nice chinook salmon in the low to high twenties. The winds and the fog banks that exacerbated conditions during the morning shifts a few days ago receded on Tuesday afternoon, replaced by a return to sunny skies and calmer water. Things heated up at that point on the west side for a few boats, while others saw some action at Cohoe Point and Marchand Reef.
Sending apologies to Marlene Bindman for the omission of her name and the 31-pound tyee she boated last week. As a related aside, I have been keeping track of the number of times the top anglers have been women so far this year. I can now tell you that roughly a third of all 30-plus-pound fish have been the result of cool heads and tight lines by female anglers.
Earlier this week Screamer slipped the net under a nice tyee at 32 pounds for Kathy Johnson. Once again, it was a shallow water fish that hit a mooching rod just barely back of the prop wash. Screamer says she had her hands full fighting this fish amid high winds but remained calm and finished it up perfectly. Nice work on the release too Kathy.
Other highlights of late include a 31-pound catch and release for Clubhouse guest Duane Smith, as well as twin 25’s for Steven Robins and Broderick Smith. The North Island Lodge congregation also posted some memorable moments in spite of the erstwhile angry sea, highlighted by a 39 for Reid Gustusen, who was fishing with guide Danny. Not sure of the details but they reportedly made every effort to release the big fish unharmed. Inevitably though, circumstances occasionally make it difficult to ensure the viability of the catch. Thank you for trying though guys. Guide Bryce helped guest Payton Ludick to a 34-pound catch and release, while guide Jason did the same for John Anderson and a 32-pound model.
And what’s this? Dave Matuschewski was back for yet another go at North Island Lodge? And boated a 15-pound coho to boot? I should tell you a bit about Dave here friends. He and I go back a long ways, and among the many interesting things I can tell you about him, including his generous support of the annual Reeling for Ronnie charity tournament, is that he just may be the most ardent angler I have ever met in my life. In fact, I don’t have the energy to accompany him on his self-guided missions. He is always the first to leave the dock and the last to return, and he fishes right through lunch irrespective of conditions. Hard core angler, Dave is.
No highlights to report on the halibut front this week, owing to aforementioned wind that makes bottom fishing all but impossible. Same goes for guests of The Outpost down Port Louis way the past few days, which under normal circumstances offers great halibut fishing. But with the blustery weather now gone, the guides at The Outpost have resumed their southward runs in quest of big fish. And big fish they did find for three happy anglers. These were Joseph Panaisti, who caught and, according to the report, “creatively released” a fish that was just ounces under 40 pounds while fishing with guide Hanes.
Aaannnnnd, once again in the fabulous female fisher category, we have Jenelle Kral catching and releasing a 35 just a couple of days ago. Rounding out the top three on the leaderboard this week was Michael Huth with an even 30.
The forecast for northern Haida Gwaii is for some overcast skies and likely a bit of precipitation over the next day or two, which I contend is nothing to dread. On the contrary, I always welcome overcast skies because they are frequently accompanied by calm seas, and the odd shower is no match for the weather gear that the lodges provide for us. And with predictions for a return to partly sunny skies and balmy temperatures in the later part of the August long weekend, we look ahead with great gusto.
After all, isn’t pretty much any time a good time to venture far beyond to the mystery and beauty of Haida Gwaii?
Until next week friends, stay safe and well.