Tsuktulig, Faith’s Birthday, Cha-wee-cha, and More
Word of the Week- Cha-WEE-cha! That’s a phonetic spelling for king salmon in Russian. I would write the word in Russian if I could remember how the Russians spell it in their very different from ours alphabet. More on the Russians below.
From the Inbox, an email from Nick Collantonio, a repeat Lodge guest for many years: “I enjoyed both weekly reports from the Goodnews. In each report was my pick for the Comatose Angler Award for that week: wading-shoes-on-the-wrong-foot-guy and dropped-spool-in-the-water-guy. Having established myself as a comatose angler in Florida, Alaska and Ireland, I take an interest in those who follow in my footsteps, and I take satisfaction in knowing that on the day that the award was first presented at GNRL I had landed three species of Pacific salmon in comatose mode — silver, pink and king — 60% of a slam.
“Seeya in two and a half weeks.” -Nick
Wednesday was Faith’s seventh birthday. The party was a gala affair. She got a Hello Kitty book, a set of fly tying tools, and a pair of waders, and several other gifts. I considered making and giving her drumsticks, a gift that keeps on giving. I also considered Mike and Kim’s sanity and held off, at least for another year.
Monday son Alex, Taylor Melville, and I took a day off to go mountaining. I was optimistic when we left but by the time we got to Tsuktulig it had clouded and the top wasn’t visible. We decided to go anyway.
We found a mostly clear path across the tundra, a fairly clear path through the trees, and then it was on to the summit. I am slower than I used to be. That may be a good thing, come to think of it, at least in some areas of endeavor.
We had lunch near the summit. I was uncomfortable. You could only see about 100 feet and it was steep down in every direction but one. I had no intention of going up on that knife edge just then.
As we headed down we got below a break in the clouds and had some incredible views.
We even had enough gas left after getting down to stop and do a little fishing on the way back to camp. We got one bite between us. I lost the fish.
At the beginning of the week I spent a couple days doing king salmon/sockeye salmon splits. Bob Wohlborn and Cary Campbell combined for a king salmon double with two fish that together easily hit 50 pounds. We then got 15 sockeyes.
Wednesday the Russians arrived, nine of them from St. Petersburg. My first assignment was with Mikhail and Dennis, father and son. They spin fished, but they were among the best anglers I’ve run into anywhere ever, just awesome. They tuned up eight kings on Wednesday afternoon, and four more on Thursday. Sadly it has been cold and rainy since they got here (high of 46 Fahrenheit today) and I have not been carrying the camera in the boat.
Last night I took Aaron the chef and Will, chief bottle washer, fly fishing for chums. The fish were right where they were supposed to be, and both guys had a great time. There are again stupid numbers of chum salmon in the river.
Fish Story of the Week: Today Nikita and Pavel graced my boat. As already stated it was cold, rainy, and windy. Pavel’s gloves were crap and Nikita didn’t have any. He asked me as best he could (which was good enough, since I eventually figured out what he wanted) if I had an extra pair of gloves. I did, a nice fleece pair with the fold-down mitten top, a wonderful thing during the Alaskan summer. I gave them to him.
Of course they got wet. While we were in for lunch he put them on the propane heater I his cabin. My son Alex was walking by a short time later and heard the smoke alarm. My gloves were on fire.
Nikita showed them to me after lunch. He was very apologetic, as you could imagine. We made up and were fine!
Nikita and Pavel took three big kings, all on plugs. One salmon weighed eight kilos as measured on their scale. Nikita likes a lot of drag on his reel. He locked down on my Ambassadeur and pulled the hook off of two plugs. It was an entertaining day in spite of some very crappy weather.
Spo-cee-bo for reading…
That is this week’s Goodnews River Lodge, Alaska Fishing Report.
Life is great and I love my work!
Life is short- If you can’t come fishing here, at least go fishing!
All content in this blog, including writing and photos, copyright John Kumiski 2012. All rights are reserved.