2012 Goodnews Season Wrapping Up
Next week- my 10 best photos from 2012 Goodnews!
The last week of the 2012 Goodnews season arrived. Our current crop of guests go home on Wednesday. Then it’s clean up, put up, and get out, always a bittersweet time. That having been said, I am quite ready to get home. I miss Susan, and my mom, and Richard, and son Maxx, and all my friends and relatives. See you all soon!
I had a fish counter today, Patrick, a Scotsman currently living in New Zealand. Patrick carefully tallied the number of silver salmon he caught. He used a fly rod for most, got about six on a gurgler, a dozen or so on streamers, and the balance of 23 on a spinning rod. We won’t discuss missed strikes, fish that jumped off, broke off, etc. I thought the morning was slow. The last spot of the day, a favorite of mine on the middle fork, was spectacular and the day saver.
One of Patrick’s 23 silver salmon.
Bill Kirby, Ulf Erickson, and Sir Thomas Tait are some of the other current guests, some of my favorites. I was fortunate enough to fish with Ulf yesterday, along with first-time Goodnews guest Fred Novak. Eighty-five year old Fred is a feisty guy, a quick wit with a joke repertoire, a wonderful guy to have in the boat. Again, we fished silvers and had quite a lovely day.
In the last group was Steve the Geologist and Dr. John, both Texans. Doc had many Alaska trips under his belt. Steve was an Alaska rookie, and had never touched a fly rod before.
About five minutes after leaving camp Steve caught his first Alaska fish, a 12 pound silver salmon that ate a DOA CAL jig. Doc enjoyed himself by watching Steve get fish after fish, hooting and hollering while doing so. That’s what I call a good friend!
Later in the week I took them way up the river for dollies. Steve was now an accomplished fly caster, having gotten numerous silver salmon with some of the other guides. We gurgled and streamered dollies all day and got some nice fish, several pounds in some cases.
Steve the geologist with one of many dollies he caught upriver.
Another upriver trip is scheduled for tomorrow. I suspect it will similarly be a smashing success.
Fish Story of the Week-
On Wednesday the new guests came. Lance and David, from Idaho, fly fishers both, fished with me for silver salmon that afternoon.
David hooked a silver that took him into his backing. When the fly line was almost on the reel the backing somehow got wrapped around the reel handle. The fish chose that moment to surge. The fly line and backing parted ways, and the fish made off with the fly line. You just can’t make up this stuff.
Of course David started yelling. “Hurry! Go get it!” The anchor and 50 feet of line are out. The motor is trimmed up. There are seven salmon already on two stringers, hanging in the water. We are not going anywhere in a hurry, regardless of how fast I go.
By the time we’re under way the fly line is gone. David starts thinking out loud whether or not he has another fly line. “Don’t worry,” I say. “If we don’t find it someone else will.”
We search for the line for less than five minutes when I spot it, long and skinny and bright green, strung out parallel to the shoreline about 15 feet off the bank. We idle over. I pick it up. The fish is still on!
Somewhat rested, the fish is ready to resist. I fight him on an expensive, bright green handline, and David nets him when the fish is next to the boat. We get the entire fly line back, as well as catching the fish.
Less than five minutes later, the line is properly re-rigged, the salmon is on the stringer, and David is fishing again.
Son Alex does a water ballet while fighting a silver salmon.
And that is this year’s last Goodnews River Lodge, Alaska Fishing Report from me. See you in Florida in two weeks!
Life is great and I love my work!
Life is short- go fishing!Capt. John Kumiski
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