That other thread "How bad have you seen it" made me want to post this story.
Not sure if any of you have encountered this before but this was probably the scariest moment in my entire life.
Last year my brother, my gf, my mom and myself rented a cabin a skiff and fished out of Coffman cove for a week. I had been reading these awesome posts by 270ti about his King fishing exploits out of Craig so my brother and I decided to drive the boat to Craig one day and try it out.
The weather was awesome, the fishing was pretty good as well, but the most memorable thing for us was the half a dozen feeding frenzies we saw that day.
Within 5 mins of leaving the dock, we saw about 50+ gulls, just as many puffins, and about 20 bald eagles all diving in the water, chasing herring. The water was boiling with life.
Now, Im originally from the East coast and seeing feeding birds like that has a pavlovian effect on me. I start drooling and casting directly at the birds no matter what because if this happens to me in Massachusetts, or in Rhode Island, it means there are some crazy fish underneath that will eat ANYTHING. Seriously. I've seen clips of dudes throwing scissors, screwdrivers etc. and ANYTHING works when the stripers or blues go crazy.
We were too far from that frenzy to try and fish around it so we just kept going to our fishing spot.
Throughout the day we saw a few more frenzies, but all out of reach.
On the way back home, we saw another feeding frenzy, bigger than all the others, and it was close enough to reach!!
So my brother gets in real close, maybe within 40 feet or so and we start casting spoons in there that were the same size as the herring.
1st drop...... nothing.
2nd drop...... nothing.
3 drop......... nothing.
4th drop.................."What the hell dude. Whats happening? Where are the fish?"
5th drop...........my brother hooks a puffin!
yay! Poultry tonight! (thats a joke)
Anyways, after 10 minutes or so, we managed to hook 1 puffin and a few very small rock fish.
We could not understand what was happening because in our minds, there had to be some kings or cohos or rockfish that were wrangling all these fish. Why would all of these fish ball up in one spot if nothing is keeping them pinned to the surface????!!!!
I say to my brother "Get me right on top of the freaking ball of herring"
As I approach the ball of herring, I can see its THICK! The gulls and eagles are deafening! Its like we're in this crazy space owned by these birds.
I toss my 3oz shiny spoon into the herring and its so thick, the my lure doesnt even start sinking right away.
As we watch my lure disappear, we're waiting anxiously for this massive King that we're hoping for.
A humpback whale comes up within 5 feet of the boat, swallows EVERYTHING in front of us. And Im talking about a whale so close that I saw those weird barnacle type things all over its lips, I saw the scrapes on its face, like a used up leather couch, and those weird looking feather type teeth in its mouth. If I wanted to, I could have smacked it with rod.
1 second later: "bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz" The whale is just peeling line of of my reel!
My brother starts yelling at me because Im actually stunned with fear for the 1st time in my life.
"snap your line! DUDE SNAP YOUR LINE! JOE!! SNAP YOUR FREAKING LINE!!!"
I snap out of it, the gulls and eagles get even louder now. I can hardly hear him.
My brother gets on the motor, and starts bolting out of there, but as we're leaving, another whale breaches only about 30 feet away from us.
So my brother and I scream "Oh crap!!!"
Im thinking that if we're going too fast, maybe a whale is gonna breach right in front of us! So he stops and we're unsure about what to do.
I start knocking a metal spoon against the boat thinking to myself that this will let the whales know we're here!
In hindsight, I feel like such an idiot but I really didnt know how to react.
Anyways, after banging on the boat for 5 minutes, the frenzy slowed down and so did my heart rate.
With the final gull finally quieted down, my brother looks at me and says: "That whale stared at me man. Its eyeball was as big as my head...He stared directly into my soul!!"
We both start cracking up at his stupid line and go off to find more rock fish.
What a thrill.