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Thread: Iced into cove, my fishing weekend

  1. #1

    Default Iced into cove, my fishing weekend

    My buddy and I went out Friday and Saturday out of Whittier on his C-dory. Purpose was to fish and just get out on the water.

    Not a bite. Mostly jigged for rock fish. But I've never really found a good place for rock fish out of Whittier. The water for the most part was like glass and not a drop of rain or flake of snow. Three firsts for me, though. The first time I've been out this early, the first time I woke up at 2:30 am to find that the cove we'd anchored in had iced over, and the first time I'd seen phosphorescent algae.

    Went on the deck at 0230 to take care of business. Looked up at the stars, then looked down at the water. Thought maybe I was seeing the reflection of the stars in the water, but then looked more closely and saw lots of flashing "things". Realized that I was seeing what I'd only read about. Pretty amazing. Went back to bed and my buddy, sleeping in the V-berth, said it was raining. I said no it's not, I was just outside and it's clear. Told him to go look at the phosphorescent algae. We both went outside to take a look. About then, I noticed that the two rods we'd set out were bent pretty good and jerking. Both had a fish on. Nice. We started to reel them in. Got to where we could see the lures, and the lines were still jerking. What the hell? I feel a fish on, but there's no fish. Realized then that the lines were jerking because the cove was freezing over and the tide was going out. So the ice was moving and the lines were jerking as the lines would keep breaking the ice. The rain that he'd heard earlier was the ice crunching into the bow. Oh well, didn't make much sense to pull anchor in the middle of the night just to go anchor in another cove that was probably also going to ice over.

    My buddy thought he'd take the net and catch some of the flashing critters. I told him it was useless, because you're not going to net algae. So he dipped the net into the water and the entire net literally glowed. As he was sweeping the net through the water, the algae hitting the frame and net lit up. You could see every strand of the net lighting up, and as he swept the net through the water, he'd also leave a trail of lit-up algae behind it. Way too cool. Then I dropped the jig on my line down deep and shook the line back and forth. You could see a column of light going down several feet (yards?) along where my line went.

    In the morning, most of the cove was iced up. We waited for a while for it to thaw, but decided to just take it slow and work our way out. Ended up getting out fine, and the bottom paint was none the worse for the wear.

    So fishing sucked, but everything else was great. Glad summer is finally here.

  2. #2
    Mark
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    Great story. Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by skydiver View Post
    ....But I've never really found a good place for rock fish out of Whittier....
    Me, neither. That's funny, really. Passage Canal seems like such great rockfish habitat.....

    ....Realized then that the lines were jerking because the cove was freezing over and the tide was going out. So the ice was moving and the lines were jerking as the lines would keep breaking the ice. The rain that he'd heard earlier was the ice crunching into the bow....
    That's remarkable! I've never heard of saltwater freezing this late in spring.

    The Homer dock situation this year comes to mind......

  3. #3

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    I thought it was odd that the water froze so quickly. There was frost on the boat in the morning, but I didn't think it was all that cold outside. I thought that maybe there was enough fresh water coming into the bay to allow the water to freeze at a higher temp. than saltwater, but even the head of Kings Bay had a fair amount of ice that formed overnight. One of my main concerns overnight was that the ice would get thick enough to cause the boat to move and drag anchor as the tide/ice moved out of the cove. But the anchor alarm on the gps was set and we never moved. Doesn't mean I slept all that well, though.

  4. #4
    Member Rick P's Avatar
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    Skydiver;
    I used to see bioluminescent zooplankton fairly often when I guided for sea kayaking down in Monterrey Ca, cool stuff! We used to go paddling through it at night, the paddle wake would leave little glowing tornadoes in the water and the wake from the kayak would glow several yards behind you. Swimming in it can be really neat too every time you move it sends glowing neon clouds through the water. Of course everything of any kind of size causes the same effect and it can be really unsetteling to have something glowing go zipping by you in the dark! Was that a dolphin?,big seal maybe?, Bet it was a sea lion about that time you remember there are some really big sharks not to far off shore!

    Rick P

  5. #5

    Thumbs up bioluminescent zooplankton

    I was over in port chalmers (montague) last fall, we got in late had dinner at the cabin (big tasty shrimp) Bs'd for awhile, then I motered back out to my boat about 1 am, at first I couldn't figure out what the glow was behind the kicker motor. The "bioluminescent zooplankton" was so bright, as I pulled up to my boat the tidal action made it look like "sparks" coming of the bow and sides of the boat, it was very, very cool!! I sat and watched and "played" with it for an hour. One of the coolist things I have seen in a long time.

  6. #6

    Default That's what that was

    I took my wooden pram out fishing for stripers at night on the Smith River in Reedsport, OR four years ago and I can't forget how the water was sort of glowing in the moonlight when the oars stroked the water. I have wondered what that was since then and if you haven't seen it, well you can't describe it with words. It is really amazing. (I think I am going to just call it "plankton" though).
    Hike faster. I hear banjo music.

  7. #7
    Member ACBMAN's Avatar
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    Default Ice and Anchors

    I know of a guy who anchored in cove for the night and the ice with the tide cut his anchor line,just another thing to think about.

  8. #8

    Default Cove iced over

    Same ice problem with me this past Tuesday morning in Suprise Cove out of Whittier while shrimping. Awoke to Cove iced over.
    DSC01703.jpg
    DSC01734.jpg

  9. #9

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    ACBMan - You're not the one I saw on the dock in Whittier Friday afternoon are you?

    The Surprise Cove picture looks like what I saw. Oh, except for the shrimp!

  10. #10
    Member Rod in Wasilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skydiver View Post
    ...I woke up at 2:30 am ...About then, I noticed that the two rods we'd set out were bent pretty good and jerking. Both had a fish on...
    Not to be a stick-in-the-mud, but, for the sake of those who don't know, unattended rods are illegal according to the definition of "sport fishing". Just thought I'd throw that out there. Do with it what you will.
    Quote Originally Posted by northwestalska
    ... you canít tell stories about the adventures you wished you had done!

  11. #11
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    If the cove you anchor in is fed by a freshwater stream or river, icing over is fairly common.

  12. #12
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    I've caught a ton of rock fish out of whittier, not telling where though
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  13. #13

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    Rod - I hadn't thought about that. Good to know.

    Paul - That's what I originally thought, too. But a good chunk of King's Bay had some icing overnight, too, and that's a good size area of water. Still, for as cold as it didn't get overnight, I was surprised at how fast it froze. Especially given the fact that the water was moving most of the night with the changing of the tides. Learn something new all the time.

  14. #14

    Default Hey Skydiver

    Your story sounds eerily similar to my B-in-Law's. I think his boat's name is the C-Spirit.

  15. #15
    Member jrogers's Avatar
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    Default Fishing for Rockfish already??

    Isn't PWS closed to rockfish until May 1st??

  16. #16
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Unless

    Unless things have changed it is open all year with a 10 fish limit after a certain date in the fall.

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  17. #17
    Member jrogers's Avatar
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    Default You are correct

    I just did not read far enough. It is 5 per day May 1st to Sept 15, but then the next line says 10 per day from Sept 16 - April 30. Thats good to know, since we may go out this weekend, and I was thinking it was closed.

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