This summer I had the opportunity to fish Kodiak in mid July. Two days on the salt and one day fishing the road system.
I will start off by saying I enjoyed the opportunity to see Kodiak in its best weather ever... sunny, calm winds and not a drop of water in the sky! We were able to catch a lot of species all within a reasonable distance of port. The road system river system was loaded with fish and while the locals weren't too forthcoming with info - we were able to find the fish.
The only downside of my Kodiak Charter experience was the processing of the fish. The "process" that they have in place appears to be super slick for all involved. The charters have a fish tote on the back deck that doubles as a work table while on the water. Once you're done for the day the captain motors up to one of the local processors dock and they offload the tote full of fish. A weight is documented on the receipt (no one on the boat sees this number on a scale) and we are told they will process the fish (including packaging and freezing). Now up to this point... I am okay with the way things are handled with the exception of weighing the catch on the dock where no one see's what the actual weight was; but I want to believe this process is on the up and up.
After two days of halibut/salmon/rock-fish/cod fishing... we go up to collect the meat that has been processed for us.
Note: The fish tote (1200lb on our boat) on Day 1 was over flowing. I am guessing somewhere near 60+ cod were put in the tote, 14 halibut (8 over and 6 under) with 5 or 6 over 40lbs largest being 80lbs, 40 rock fish and a ling cod or two.
Day two had 35 rock fish, 7 or 8 salmon including one 25lb King, 11 halibut 7 over 29" and 4 under. The fish tote could close as we caught a few less halibut and no Cod.
We split the catch 8 ways, and our processed fish return was 49lbs each - Just under 400lbs total.
I was asked at the end of Day 2 what I thought we would be taking home as I am familiar with the meat yield on the species we were targeting; my estimate was about 35 lbs off per person - I guessed 650-700lbs total for the following:
25 Halibut - 27b avg at 60% yield is 405lbs
75 Rock Fish - 4lb avg at 40% yield is 120lbs
8 Salmon - 12lb avg at 60% yield is 58lbs
60 Cod - 4lbs avg at 40% yield is 96lbs
2 Ling - 20lbs avg at 40% yield is 16lbs
Total is about 695lbs of processed fish (which is close to what I guessed)
I even dropped the yield 10% on all fish harvested...
25 Halibut - 27b avg at 50% yield is 337lbs
75 Rock-fish - 4lb avg at 30% yield is 90lbs
8 Salmon - 12lb avg at 50% yield is 48lbs
60 Cod - 4lbs avg at 30% yield is 72lbs
2 Ling - 20lbs avg at 30% yield is 12lbs
Total is about 560lbs of processed fish
So I have a two part question here:
1. Are my yield percentages way off?
By what I and others who are in the charter industry or have fished in AK for 15+ years confirm to be fair/accurate percentages we are missing nearly 300lbs of fish. By the adjusted yields we are still missing 160lbs of fillets.
2. Has anyone else on the forum experienced this? I had a conversation with a charter operator in Seward this weekend and he said I am the 6th or 7th person who has had this same experience and feels the same way - I will not be returning to Kodiak (city) for a salt water chartered trip.
I have purposefully left out the names of the Charter Company and the Fish Processor - feel free to PM if you care to know who they are.