Homer Alaska - Outdoors

Story last updated at 2:01 PM on Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Don't blame 'fishing dude' for marital woes



By NICK C. VARNEY

May I suggest that some of you out there need to lay off gnawing dark roast coffee beans while slamming Monster Rehab Energy Drinks enhanced with straight shots of corn syrup, especially if you wish to file a coherent complaint with our vast staff at Reeling 'Em In.

All I mentioned last week was "A few silver salmon have been reported at the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon. A couple of small schools were spotted cruising outside The Hole during low tide on Tuesday morning."

A couple of teeth-grinding electronic missives made it sound as though whole dynasty units sacrificed dipnetting safaris to the far beaches of Outer Kenaiastan just to stay here and harvest the bounty they claimed I reported was about to tumble into the local lagoon.

I was somewhat flummoxed but the posts, if truth be told, were hilarious. Unfortunately they also were undeniably unprintable in a family newspaper so I wrote back in manly defense of my previous humble pronouncement.

I suggested that rather than bark at me like a miniature Schnauzer with a beer bong hangover they might want to revisit the column without the use of the bottoms of Alaskan Amber bottles as reading glasses.

Their responses were even funnier. It turned out the emails came from a couple of guys in the same group that were tired of running back and forth to dipnet and "freeze their &^!!s" off while their wives went box store shopping.

They claimed it would have been cheaper to buy the fish. So they told their Visa-empowered ladies that the "fishing dude" in the paper claimed that it was about to get hot in the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon and talked them into two days of watching their hubbies get summarily skunked instead of taking road trips. The men were happy. The spouses were not, thus the feigned outrage. Thanks, guys. I know where you're camped.

Speaking of fishing, my wife, Jane, spent last Saturday watching some of the best fin hunters in Alaska. I surprised her with a flight reservation and day trip to the Brooks Falls in Katmai National Park where she got up close and personal with the grizzlies snatching reds from the river. I stayed on this side of the inlet for a little angling research of my own.

She had a dazzling smile when she stepped out of that plane and after I looked at the pictures she brought back, I'm changing my angling techniques.

I figure if I stop cutting my hair and let my fingernails grow, by this time next year, I'll give those bruins some major competition if I can just discover a secluded spot up stream where I won't start rumors of a feeding Sasquatch in the area.

Now for a look at some of the state's weekly fishing report.

Regulation Reminders and Emergency Orders

A youth-only fishing day is scheduled for Saturday from 12:01 a.m. to midnight at the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon. A portion of the fishing area at the lagoon will be set aside only for kids 15 and younger to fish. Alaska Department of Fish and Game staff will be available from 2-5 p.m. to help young anglers set up fishing gear and fish for silver salmon returning to the lagoon.

Lingcod must be at least 35 inches long with head attached or 28 inches from tip of tail to front of dorsal fin. Anglers who choose to fillet lingcod at sea are reminded that the fillets must be at least 28 inches long or anglers must retain the carcass that looks like it still might try and kill them if they turn their back on it.

Salt Waters: Halibut

Halibut fishing is fair to good, but most flats remain somewhat small. Sampled halibut harvested out of the Homer port during the past week averaged just more than 15 pounds. Check out the Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby update on page 8 for meatier exceptions and bragging rights.

Salt Waters: Salmon

Trolling success for feeder kings in Kachemak Bay kicked into a higher gear during the past week. Anglers nailed some beauties in the Point Pogibshi and Bear Cove areas, so dust off your downriggers.

Snagging is allowed Lower Cook Inlet and Kachemak Bay south of Anchor Point.

Silvers have started to display their airborne fighting side off Point Pogibshi.

Pink and chum salmon also are providing some soon-to-be-canned action in the Seldovia area.

Sockeye salmon are lining up for the smoker in Tutka Bay Lagoon.

Miniature wakes have been spotted in the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon. Some claim they are cohos while others are positive that the minor surface disturbances are caused by a lost seal with nothing else to do but annoy fishermen.

Other Saltwater Fishing

Lingcod season remains open. Fishing has been just less than rockin' for those hunting the critters in the waters around Chugach and Perl islands.

Fishing off the end of the Homer Spit can be an entertaining spectacle especially when it's a bit crowded and someone pulls out a creature that attaches itself to one of their $200 Nikes. Mild stampedes aside, it remains a trendy location to catch pollock, Pacific cod, flatfish and Dolly Varden.

Personal Use

The China Poot personal-use dipnet fishery remains open through Aug. 7.

Fish are still cruising around over there so give it a shot early in the morning to line your cooler.

Fresh Waters

The lower portions of the Anchor River, Deep Creek, Ninilchik River and Stariski Creek are open to sport fishing; bait and treble hooks may be used.

Upstream areas opened Aug. 1 for Dolly Varden and steelhead/rainbow trout.

Expect poor to fair fishing for pinks and fair to semi-hot fishing for Dollies in these streams.

The Dollies remain very bait-friendly in the Anchor and a few silvers have been whacked down toward the mouth of the stream.

Pink and chum salmon are available in streams on the south side of Kachemak Bay. That's nice.

Shellfish

Good clamming tides continue through Aug. 5. Remember, the sport, personal use, and subsistence bag and possession limits for littleneck and butter clams have been reduced from 1,000 littleneck clams and 700 butter clams to a combined bag and possession limit of 80 clams.

Nick can be reached at ncvarney@gmail.com if he isn't trying to ambush a silver in the Anchor or studying the bear fishing techniques of the Brooks Falls mob.

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