Saturday, October 16, 2010

Alaska from the Back of the Bike, Day 9

Need to finish the last few days of my vacation log. Have been distracted for a few weeks, but here goes!

Tuesday, June 29

Breakfast at the Lodge. Then we prepared for our salmon fishing, bear watching experience. High Adventure, the outfitters we were going with, recommended bringing a sack lunch, so we stopped at a little sandwich shop and picked up a fully loaded box lunch with a little of everything included.

So we took a float plane over Double Glacier and Cook Inlet to Wolverine Creek to fish for sockeye salmon. The plane landed and pulled up to a flat bottom boat that was anchored to a patch of land in the water about the size of my sofa. We stepped off the plane, into the boat, and motored a little bit further into nowhere. Pulled up to a shallow, rocky creek that was emptying into the lake and threw out the anchor. It was very shallow, and you could see the salmon circling the boat and pooling up at the base of the creek. Nearing the end of their life cycle, they were preparing to swim back up the creek to lay their eggs and die.

Greg. our guide, was very good, and patient. He taught us how to salmon fish by simply throwing out the line and waiting for them to swim through it. (The best part was when they started to fight and splashed around everywhere trying to break the line!) He didn’t get flustered when the other couple in our boat nailed him in the nose with a hook or he had to dive into the water to catch their pole which fell in. I caught the first one fairly soon – about a 4 pounder. We caught our quota – 3 each- but managed to take the rest of the afternoon to do it. However, we ended up with 18.6 lbs of sockeye, which we took to get smoked. Yummmmmm.

While fishing,, a grizzly comes running downstream and dives in to the water after the fish. She was so skinny, you could tell she just recently un-hibernated, woke up, was starving, and trying to fatten herself back up. She hung around the creek all afternoon, occasionally diving in, occasionally actually catching a fish that was starting up the rocky, shallow creek. When the float plane came to pick us up, we flew low over the terrain on the way back. We saw a huge moose with a full rack of antlers, and several more bear. They almost looked like little animal figures someone planted down there for us to see. Hmmm…I wonder.

Oh Happy Day!

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