Yesterday i headed west across the sound to fish with my friend steve. steve and i are both groms in the washington fishing scene. both of us are on journeys to figure stuff out in our local waters and both of us are having a great time doing it.
on the menu for the day was some trolling for salmon. steve also set a couple of crab traps out the day before as a bonus (or backup, i'm not sure which). great call as that turned out to be the highlight of the day.
as with any fishing that you are new to, you have to expect a certain amount, usually a lot, of "dues paying" if you want to become successful or proficient at it. knowing this all too well, i was not expecting much in the way of catching fish. steve has never caught a salmon trolling and i have never even been trolling for salmon, but that 's one of the many things many people do around here so i was more than willing to give it a go.
it was a beautiful northwest day. clear skies and not too hot. a great day to be out on the water, but perhaps not the best to be salmon fishing. we trolled around for a while with nothing but weeds. on one of our weed checks, when we checked to see if there were weeds on our lures, steve thought he might have something else on his line... he did.
we were quite amused with what steve's lead, flasher, and spoon attracted.
steve's first "salmon" caught trolling. it was barely bigger than the spoon it bit.
we laughed about our "success" and went on trying. not too long after i caught my first salmon trolling.
my first salmon. uh steve... i think we are supposed to be catching the fish returning from the ocean, not the ones that are heading for the ocean. hah!
yes, we are not exactly pros quite yet, but it was fun as usual and technically we both did catch our first salmon while trolling. call it a success. you gotta start somewhere right?
we trolled a bit more but got nothing more. the tide slacked and we went to pull the crab traps that steve had set the day before. crabbing is something that both steve and i have done before so we were hoping that our collective crabbing experience consisted of enough "dues paid" to at least get some for dinner.
chillin' on the deck after doing battle with some tough salmon.
approaching the first trap.
pulling the pot.
we got color!
and they were big!
females, like this one, and soft shells must go back.
the second pot was filled with monsters as well!
yes, that is a five gallon bucket.
in the sound, the law allows for five male crabs (61/4" inch minimum size) per license (and puget sound crab endorsement) per day. so we chucked a bunch of crabs like these back to grow, reproduce, or perhaps be eaten on another day. there are a ton of rules to abide by here and they vary by location as well as time of year. you really need to be aware of the regulations whenever you hit the water. as our haul shows, however, the rules are there for a reason.
you know what i am going to say... sometimes like that. there are very few things in life better than fresh steamed dungeness crab (especially the galagalas). thanks steve for another great day on the water in your backyard. i can't wait for the next adventure. you never know what you'll run into on the quest for good times. i gotta go eat more crab!
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