Don't dip your net on the downstream side of the boat!
While dipnetting from a boat above the bridge at Chitina last weekend, I noticed an alarming trend. LOTS of people were dipping on the downstream side of their boats. If your boat is broadside to the current and you put a dipnet on the downstream side you take an awful risk of becoming a member of the Chitina pole-vault and swim team. If a large fish (king) hits your net or you hang it on a rock the boat becomes a fulcrum and the current speed will take you right out of the boat. This actually happened to a guy last weekend. He was lucky, his friends were able to fish him out of the river fairly quickly. If your boat is small enough this scenario could also end with a capsized vessel in which case another boat will be required to rescue you. The Copper is a dangerous river on it's best day and while the stretch above the bridge is relatively tame compared to some other spots, it will still bite you in the butt if you don't pay attention. (rant over) Be safe and enjoy the great Alaskan outdoors.