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Thread: Whittier, 16 foot Hewescraft 70hp, go or no go......

  1. #1

    Default Whittier, 16 foot Hewescraft 70hp, go or no go......

    So this is my first post to the forum, and I have lived in Alaska for several years now, enjoy the outdoors, but I want to try something....shrimping. Right now I currently possess a 16ft Hewescraft with a 70hp jet, on a nice day is this suitable for taking out of Whittier (not far by any means) maybe a couple miles? I am really interested in shrimping, and on a "nice" day where the seas aren't too rough, is this achievable from this sort of craft? Any other considerations I should take into account? Im not expecting to run to Montague and back (cause I don't have that range), but rather just do some shrimping out of, maybe an overnight camping trip in and around the canal near Whittier.

    Any input would be appreciated.

  2. #2

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    After poking around and finding a thread on some dude shrimping out of a 9 foot kayak, Im fairly confident on good weather days. But am I going to far out on a limb here?

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    What hewescraft is it? River runner, sea runner, etc...

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    You have the power but the boat won`t like 3' seas. Stay in the canal on a nice day (shrimping is decent) and avoid all the weeds 'cause you`ll murder that pump. Fish close to the shoreline while you wait. Look for a forecast that has variable winds so the seas don`t build on you. I have been all the way to Perry Island in my 16' Tracker V16 but it was not smart by any means....and on another trip we about died in it...broke both seats and scared the shiz out of us. Be safe and wait for a great water report.


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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by ak_mathews View Post
    What hewescraft is it? River runner, sea runner, etc...

    Unfortunately (for this situation) it is a river runner, so though it isn't a flat bottom boat, it being like a semi v it is going to kind of ride lower in the water, especially since the side walls aren't as high.....

    According to google earth, shotgun cove is 5.5 miles from the small boat harbor (staying fairly close to shore), would I be crazy to say I think it could handle 2 foot seas that far? Sure it might be a little bit of a rough ride.....but.......

    (Im still debating.....)

  6. #6

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    Hmmm...interesting, thanks for the feedback....I really appreciate it. I don't really go to Whittier a whole lot.....well cause there is nothing there, typically I go to Seward but I don't think I would dream of taking it out there being how fast the weather changes there (not saying it cant in Whittier). Yeah I wouldn't try it in anything rougher than 2'-3'. You said weeds? Is there a significant amount of weeds out of whittier? I wouldn't know cause I never go, but good info at best!

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by bmborum View Post
    Hmmm...interesting, thanks for the feedback....I really appreciate it. I don't really go to Whittier a whole lot.....well cause there is nothing there, typically I go to Seward but I don't think I would dream of taking it out there being how fast the weather changes there (not saying it cant in Whittier). Yeah I wouldn't try it in anything rougher than 2'-3'. You said weeds? Is there a significant amount of weeds out of whittier? I wouldn't know cause I never go, but good info at best!
    When I say weeds I`m talking about floating grass and kelp. The current will usually rip it into a line so use caution crossing through cause hanging over the back sitting sideways in 2' water to clear it out of the pump will be nerve racking and dangerous.


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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by AK2AZ View Post
    When I say weeds I`m talking about floating grass and kelp. The current will usually rip it into a line so use caution crossing through cause hanging over the back sitting sideways in 2' water to clear it out of the pump will be nerve racking and dangerous.

    I hear you, makes sense. Thanks for the help! Anyone else got feedback.

    After doing some google earth-ing, Perry island?!?! You are a brave sole

  9. #9
    Sponsor potbuilder's Avatar
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    watch the weather and bring gear to stay out if you have to, shotgun is a good starting point or better yet run across to the waterfalls and bird rookery shrimp to be had all along that shore (just look at all the buoys). If i can help with the gear email or call.

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  10. #10
    Member Rod in Wasilla's Avatar
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    Yeah, it's do-able. Just remember, the most important piece of safety equipment is permanently stored between the Captain's ears. Be smart about the conditions, and be prepared to return before things start getting snotty. As long as you make it back to safe harbor, you can always come back to get your shrimp pots.
    Quote Originally Posted by northwestalska
    ... you canít tell stories about the adventures you wished you had done!

  11. #11

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    We have a 16' Jetcraft with a 50hp prop, and have taken it out of Whittier numerous times. I have taken it across Port Wells, little ways down into Culross, as far east as the top of Perry Island, and then up around Esther and back down to Pigot point. As mentioned previously, anything over "2-3ft seas, 10knot winds" can get a bit dicey. You really have to pay attention to the wind, and watch to see if the seas are building. But honestly, I've been out along the top of Culross or out near Esther, and the seas have been glass. You could have taken a flat bottom Lowe out there in those conditions. But just watch for building seas, and head for the nearest cove if things get dicey.

  12. #12
    Member Shum's Avatar
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    We take out Wooldridge Alaskan with an 85 jet out of Whittier very often, in fact recently we have had it on the salt more than the rivers. Just pick your days and don't be too proud to turn around or head back early if it starts building. We started by exploring in close mentally marking places where we could hide if the seas got too much for our boat. We have worked our way out in the last few years getting more comfortable with the weather and the patterns and have been as far as Main bay on a good and flat day, but we had provisions to wait nasty weather if it happened. Most Days we don't venture past Esther as port wells can buildup too big for our boat quickly. We have spent the night in a cove on anchor but we were prepared for that and were quite comfortable. The kelp does get sucked into our jet from time to time, just avoid the kelp lines that someone earlier spoke of (that will plug it fast) and when you are sitting still in flat water bring the jet up to be sure it is cleaned out of kelp. We also have a kicker that keeps us moving and pointed in the right direction during jet cleanout...

    Just be smart and venture out slowly learning how much you can do...

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