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Thread: Chitina Dipnetting - How was it this weekend?

  1. #1
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    Default Chitina Dipnetting - How was it this weekend?

    Hey all... any reports on how it went this weekend (Fri-Sun)? We are thinking of driving down from Fairbanks for Monday. Any info would be helpful as we are first timers doing this and from some of the posts read on here from the past it sounds like almost a hellish trip! ha. I hope it isn't so bad. Where do we drive to and park? Where can we fish from the bank if we don't have a boat? Thanks for the time and info and I hope some of you had good luck this weekend!
    Thanks much!

  2. #2

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    Slow but we would catch them in spurts. We would be slaying them for an hour and then it would just die off, and then an hour later we would be nailing them again. Between the three of us we took 60 fish in two LONG days of dipping from my boat. We hit the water around 6am and arrived back at the parking late in the evening. This was our first time dipping the Copper in a boat and it took us awhile to figure out exactly where to successfully dip. If we go again we should do better since we found some nice spots to drift.

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    Default No Proxys With Hem

    I just called Hems fishing report. He said that the river is still coming up and fishing will be slow until we get some cooler weather. perhaps next week. Another thing he said on the recording is "WE NO LONGER ACCEPT PROXYS" Last weekend he said that Proxys would be charged the full fare. I am confused. I hope that he is talking about filling a proxy on the same trip, but he just said they no longer accept proxys. I already have my limit for this year but I planned to go again to fill a proxy for a friend that was totally disabled in a car crash and is trying to live on S. S. Disability. I have been going with Hem for the last 5 years and always done very well. I understand that he has to charge more if you fill a proxy (more weight= more fuel) But it looks like he is trying to impose his own regulations. So we can add 1 more thing to the list of things Hem does not like. 1) Gillnets 2) Proxys. I think that he should just drive the boat and be thankfull that he has so many loyal customers and let Fish and Game manage the fishery.

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    Member Spanman's Avatar
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    He still accepts proxy's...but will charge the full price for the ride. Last year he was only charging $50 for a proxy fill...I suppose he can impose his own regs, it's his company. He was giving a deal last year by only charging the 50 instead of the full 90.

  5. #5
    Member fishmaster's Avatar
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    Default

    At the start of the season he was charging an extra $50.00 for a proxy. last weekend he said that he would be charging an extra $90.00 if you fill a proxy. On the Wed. recording he said "we no longer accept Proxys" I am confused.
    You are right, I guess when you have more business than you can handle, you can write your own ticket.
    Don't get me wrong I have been going with Hem for the last 5 years and have always been very happy with his operation. I feel that since he is operating a drop off service, and I am willing to pay the extra fee for the proxy fish, the only regs that I need to follow are the ones set by Alaska Fish and Game.
    Does anyone want to partner on a fish wheel for next season?

  6. #6

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    Read the large article in the Anchorage paper Sunday about Hem. The sooner people fill their quota, the sooner a spot opens up for someone else. Quicker turnover, more customers and more money for him. If someone is filling a proxy immediately after they get their quota, then that person is tying up that spot longer. It's a good article and worth reading.

  7. #7
    Member byrd_hntr's Avatar
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    Question wondering

    How many groups of people do Hems ferry on average per day? It there many of drop off places on the river? Thinking about using his services.

  8. #8
    Member AKFishOn's Avatar
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    Default

    I think he should just charge more for a person who is filling a proxy. But I'm going to stick to finding a spot without his boat, not that it is not a good value to take his boat, I just like to find a spot and dip on my own.

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    Member akfishfool's Avatar
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    Default horsepower

    Anybody know what kind of horsepower the canyon requires, The current is much faster there then other places and very dangerouse, but my 18 foot sea Ark jon boat with a 40 prop and over 1500pds in it had know problem going upriver on both the tanana and the big Su. Anybody got an idea on current speed?

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    Default HP in canyon

    I've run the canyon many times in a 12 foot zodiac with a 15 HP Evy. Watch out for suck holes and you should be OK, usually the center of the river is safest but can have some larger waves. I also use to fish there with a 17 ft jetline with 135 Hp vovlo inboard, never a problem as long as I could get that volvo to start, it had twin carbs and an nasty temperment for starting. Common sense is your best friend, don't overload and you'll be fine. Good luck fishing

  11. #11

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    I read 10 mph in the paper last weekend.

  12. #12

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    I navigated the canyon with a 16' jon 40/30hp jet a couple weekends ago. The canyon wasnt as hairy as I thought it would be, just heed the advice of the ones above and stay away from the suck holes. If you have a lick of common sense you should be fine. The section from the bridge to the canyon sure put some hair on my chest, especially with a bum reverse bucket heading back up river on the last day. With my flat bottom boat I had to literally plow through the rooster tails, but we made it and here I am to tell my story. Would I do it again??? Absolutely as long as the river doesn't get any nastier.

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    Default Canyon Navigation

    I was reading the above post about running the canyon. I've never run the Copper and was wondering if you guys could elaborate on the suck holes. What do you look for and what happens if you happen to get into one? I'm running an 18' alumacraft with a 60/40 jet. Any other info on running the Copper would be appreciated. Thanks in advance for the help.
    Brian

  14. #14
    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by akfishfool View Post
    Anybody know what kind of horsepower the canyon requires, The current is much faster there then other places and very dangerouse, but my 18 foot sea Ark jon boat with a 40 prop and over 1500pds in it had know problem going upriver on both the tanana and the big Su. Anybody got an idea on current speed?
    that current can get up to 22-24 mph when the water is up.
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  15. #15

    Default Copper River Suck Holes

    Quote Originally Posted by bfickes View Post
    I was reading the above post about running the canyon. I've never run the Copper and was wondering if you guys could elaborate on the suck holes. What do you look for and what happens if you happen to get into one? I'm running an 18' alumacraft with a 60/40 jet. Any other info on running the Copper would be appreciated. Thanks in advance for the help.
    Brian
    Suck holes are whirlpools. We watched from shore last Father's Day as three men in a jon boat drove straight into a whirlpool at low speed, then powered off.

    The current swung the boat crosswise to the flow, stopped it, sucked it down, then started pouring water into the stern.

    The bow of the boat went upwards, with the open end facing upriver and the engine submerged. The man in the bow had to bail out first, then the man in the middle, then the man driving the boat. None of them had life jackets on that I could see. The man in the middle had the presence of mind to grab his seat cushion and throw it overboard. The driver stayed with the overturned boat, but the other two men were too far away from it. As they started to move out of sight, one man started to cry out for help.

    This was all taking place about 20 yards offshore. My fishing partner and I stood watching helplessly. He said, "Tony, we've got to do something! These men are going to die!" He started shouting and waving at people upriver on a gravel bar, but there's no way they could hear us. We didn't know if they had even seen what happened.

    My partner decided to run back to Chitina where he could get cell phone coverage and call for help.

    I stood there in shock and started praying for God to save those men, then remembered that I had happened to bring some skyrocket emergency flares with me that year. I was just shaking, trying to get them out and then didn't know how to launch them. So I didn't have my reading glasses with me and was shaking so hard I couldn't even read the directions.

    Finally I figured it out and shot off all three.

    Pretty soon a man came downriver from the bridge in his boat, going back and forth across the river. I took off my life jacket and started waving it and shouting. As he approached, I signaled three men in the river downstream. He took off to look for them.

    Then all I could do was sit down and pray, pray, pray. What a helpless feeling.

    About twenty minutes later, I heard the rescuer coming back upriver. As he pulled alongside our site, I could see that he had rescued all three men. One man saw me and held his hands over his head in prayer, as if to thank God, then held up his seat cushion. A few minutes later, I heard a chopper heading for the bridge.

    As far as I know, they all made it.

    There are lots of lessons in this whole thing. Better find out all you can about running a boat on the Copper and be prepared for anything. I don't know what the statistics are concerning survivability rates in the Copper River, but they can't be too high.

    ~tr

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