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Thread: Dipnetting-lesson learned

  1. #61
    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    The general idea on the Copper is to tie off high enough that it will keep you out of the water, its tricky, cuz it has to be long enough so you can work the net but short enough to keep you from going under. I guess a guy could hang himself that way.........but you gotta admit its easier to find the body.

    And usually folks are tying off when perched in the canyon, a precarious spot to say the least and it would be foolish to net from the cliff and not be hooked to something. Poor footing with a cliff face behind and hanging out with a net trying to pull in a net full...........Its a fairly dangerous activity any way you slice it. Some folks sweep the nets from spots that are not as steep, and tying off there would probably not be neccesary.

    I know two folks that have died in the Copper, one was fishing from shore and another was in a boat.

    It can be a ugly river and it needs to be respected. I talked to another guy that went in with two others when the boat operator froze on the controls and the boat got swamped, all three went in, not wearing any PFD's and all of them made it out, amazing and dang lucky I would say. If you go down there with the attitude that "Its not going to happen to me", then all I can say is good luck...........!


    Quote Originally Posted by dirtysteev View Post
    IT IS ALWAYS UNADVISABLE TO BE TIED OFF IN MOVING WATER.
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

  2. #62
    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    Back in the 70's I was dipping down there when a guy 50 yards away fell in. No waders PFD or rope. He went under once and though 12 of us ran down the banks with the current, he never even surfaced, not where we could see. I think he washed up in an eddy 12 miles down. I would go with a short rope that is too short to let you go under but still keep you perched on the hills and rocks
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  3. #63
    Member fullbush's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thewhop2000 View Post
    Back in the 70's I was dipping down there when a guy 50 yards away fell in. No waders PFD or rope. He went under once and though 12 of us ran down the banks with the current, he never even surfaced, not where we could see. I think he washed up in an eddy 12 miles down. I would go with a short rope that is too short to let you go under but still keep you perched on the hills and rocks
    My God man! Thats a horror story whop. I wonder how many dippers that river has claimed?





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  4. #64
    Member Albradley's Avatar
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    I say believe what you want.When my friend slipped and fell in it was the rope that saved his bacon.I would love for you people who say dont tie off to go jump in the copper with a pfd and i will talk to you whenever i make it to the nice pearly gates.
    There's a fine line between fishing....

    and standing on the shore like an idiot! ALLEN BRADLEY-TANGLE LAKES ADVOCATE/FANBOY

  5. #65
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    The general idea on the Copper is to tie off high enough that it will keep you out of the water, its tricky, cuz it has to be long enough so you can work the net but short enough to keep you from going under. I guess a guy could hang himself that way.........but you gotta admit its easier to find the body.

    And usually folks are tying off when perched in the canyon, a precarious spot to say the least and it would be foolish to net from the cliff and not be hooked to something. Poor footing with a cliff face behind and hanging out with a net trying to pull in a net full...........Its a fairly dangerous activity any way you slice it. Some folks sweep the nets from spots that are not as steep, and tying off there would probably not be neccesary.

    I know two folks that have died in the Copper, one was fishing from shore and another was in a boat.

    It can be a ugly river and it needs to be respected. I talked to another guy that went in with two others when the boat operator froze on the controls and the boat got swamped, all three went in, not wearing any PFD's and all of them made it out, amazing and dang lucky I would say. If you go down there with the attitude that "Its not going to happen to me", then all I can say is good luck...........!
    I agree with Akgramps - though the idea of being tied to anything in moving water is bad advice, the idea along the turbulent and silty Copper River is to stay out of that moving water - tying yourself off high enough to keep all body parts clear should your footing fail.

    A friend, an old timer, who used to dip along the Copper, until later years when he ran a fish wheel there, told me a story about 2 guys, dipnetters who went into the Copper. One never surfaced, but the other surfaced just a short ways downstream - at a rock, point of land, or something. A large man, but he could barely crawl out onto land for all the weight of silt in his clothes. A few years ago, in a story reported in ADN ( couldn’t find it), a man (Anchorage, Elmendorf?) fell into the Copper while dipnetting, but he was tied off a little too long, allowing his feet to dangle in the thrashing river, which slapped repeatedly at his feet, knocking him back as he struggled to regain enough footing to climb out. As I recall, he assured reporters afterward, that being tied off too long nearly cost him his life – and that it would never happen that way again. Lessons learned indeed, eh?

  6. #66

    Default Here's the full account:

    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    I talked to another guy that went in with two others when the boat operator froze on the controls and the boat got swamped, all three went in, not wearing any PFD's and all of them made it out, amazing and dang lucky I would say.
    Here's the link to the story of the guys in the boat that swamped. Happened right in front of us on Father's Day a few years ago.

    I'm sure they learned a lesson. Now I know ahead of time how to shoot off sky flares.

    ~tr

  7. #67
    Member Albradley's Avatar
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    Maybe I should clarify my stance on this.I think you should tie off so that you can still dip but if you slip you wont fall in the river.I think those people who have been very blessed by god and managed to get out once falling in should count their lucky stars.More people die than they report making it and that is reason enough for me to believe just having a pfd doesnt account to squat in that river.I believe maybe we should all agree a pfd and being tied off so if you cant fall into that river is the best policy.
    There's a fine line between fishing....

    and standing on the shore like an idiot! ALLEN BRADLEY-TANGLE LAKES ADVOCATE/FANBOY

  8. #68
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    Wow! amazing story that they survived, someone was definetely looking out for those three. You and your friend responded great with going for help and the flares. heard of same thing long time ago where a group in a flat bottom hit a log and swamped the boat, have seen very small jon boats make multiple attempts to make it out of the canyon. my wife and I have been dipping at chitina for years and we always tie off with just enough so we can reach where we need to with our nets and we always wear pfd's. You have to respect that river, i own a jet boat and wont take it there, we always go with Hem and for the peace of mind its worth it. they know where to go, and where not.
    on one trip I was reading the river as if I was driving my boat, as we entered the canyon and I was picking the lines where i thought he would run and then he made a read that i didn't and where the water was at one point it was gone in an instant, and a massive rock pile was exposed by the surging of the water. It would of been all over.
    Be safe, wear your pfd and tie off.

  9. #69
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Thx for the link, gr8fl.

  10. #70

    Default Where Rock Piles Come From

    Quote Originally Posted by jonnyb View Post
    ... a massive rock pile was exposed by the surging of the water...

    ~tr

  11. #71
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Love the earplugs idea for any camping. Earplugs good solution for fellow campers with later bedtimes (yuk-yuk). For other camps, if it's not coming into the tent, I'm mostly good with not hearing it. Besides, I learned that my hearing is attuned to certain sounds - like huffing or jaw snapping. Ha!
    Quote Originally Posted by Back Country Robb View Post
    Great posts to an important part of our subsistence lifestyles;

    I have a couple of my own suggestions that have worked quite well for me;

    ...3. Earplugs for sleeping.

  12. #72
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    Lessons from past remote (and fish) camps;

    Don't sleep so close to running water that you can't hear what's going on around you.

    Give bears the right-of-way, regardless of what you think about personal rights.

    Let the lightest sleeper among you sleep with the firearm, but make sure they're proficient with a gun, too.

    Keep your fish camp clean.

    Poodles and retrievers typically make for better camp guards against bears than huskies and other 'Northern breeds.'

    Multiple tents spread around in any relatively tight area where a bear incursion may occur, just increases the likelihood of someone suffering a friendly fire incident in the event someone opens up on Yogi in the middle of the night. (*If shooting breaks out, remain flat to the sleeping pad/ground, and become more religious than you've been in decades... It's a bit safer laying prone...)

    Don't fish with folks who drink more than a beer every two hours, or a toke every 20 minutes.

    When your equilibrium suffers from watching the water flow by hour after hour, take enough of a break that you regain your balance; your life may depend on it.

    When clubbing your fish, refrain from making loud obnoxious verbal references to in-laws, or verbally projecting/pretending violence onto those not actually present; it makes the on-lookers really nervous.

  13. #73

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    Would love more detailed explanation of use of Kenai Keeper stringer. I have one but never used. I use a 20' pole and not sure I could keep fish in net long enough to wade to shallower water, retrieve pole, get net out of water long enough to grab fish and bop it.

  14. #74
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    Been dipping on the Kenai since it first opened to dipping. So has the GF except she has always dipped from shore and I was dipping from my boat those first years. When she started dipping from the bank, there was hardly anyone doing it. She loves it, and does it every year. She's got me out on the bank now too.
    We process our salmon at home. Not exposing the flesh to that fecal water. Only thing I do there is rip the gills. I never bash them in the head. That just bruises meat.
    I take a wide mouth plastic bottle with me and if the urge hits I pee in the bottle and just leave it in my waders until later.
    Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

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