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Have you been hooked (Fishing Safety Story)

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  • Have you been hooked (Fishing Safety Story)

    I have been requested to write a story about fishing safety by one of our local magazines. The story is based on the importance of wearing eye and skin protection while fishing. The story is an attempt to help prevent injuries that occur way to often while fishing in Alaska.
    I would like to get some “This Happened To Me” stories from real people that have been “Hooked” or “Hammered” (1 ounce weight at 10 mph J )while fishing. Especially those that have been fishing alone or have sustained self-inflected injuries or near misses.
    I would have lost an eye on the Kenai had I not been wearing polarized eye protection when one of those Big Buck Sockeyes threw my hook and I got hammered by my 1oz weight. It shattered my glasses like a windshield, but my eye was protected.
    Another friend (Ray Cline) almost lost his eye on the Kasilof River when he a king threw his hook. The hook stuck in Ray’s eye and while the doctors were able to save Ray’s eye, he had to undergo a number of eye surgeries and he never regained full vision.
    Most people only feel it is necessary to wear glasses when fishing in close proximity to others and I think this is a myth worth dispelling.
    If you have a story (pictures would be awesome) that you would like to tell, please contact me. I plan to have the article finished and ready to publish at the start of the 2007 season.
    Louis A. Cusack

  • #2
    My wife's aunt lost her eye to a split shot weight that was tangled in a bush with her hook. She was tugging on the line trying to free her snag. When it let loose, the split shot hit her in the eye and damaged it beyond repair. She has had a glass eye for nearly 40 years now.

    The porcupine is a peaceful animal yet God still thought it necessary to give him quills....


    • #3
      moose river

      Wish I had a picture to go with this one..... Was bouncing around looking for reds summer of 1996 and stopped at the confluence of Moose River and the Kenai River. There was an enormous "herd" of reds that had just moved in and were milling around circling in the seam caused by the two rivers meeting. Naturally there was a lineup of about 40 people trying to catch these the typical combat manner. One these guys was standing next to me and was using about a 2 oz egg sinker frequently ripping it in a hooksetting motion and sending it flying. This little sequence went on for quite some time until he finally succeeding in getting his hook in the dorsal fin of a he reared back as hard as he could, the red jumped and the hook and weight came loose with an audible popping noise. To get the point the guy standing on the other side of me wasn't watching idiot boy at all and that two ounce sinker came flying back and struck him square between the eyes just on the forehead. He crumpled and went down from the impact and oh my, did he have a bleeder on his hands, or head. He was virtually knocked out...heck I thought it might have killed him with the speed it developed. We helped him to shore and sat him down, stopped the bleeding. I told someone who was there with him to take him to a doc to check for a potential concussion. He got hurt bad....but if that weight would have been an inch lower, and an inch or two either right or left he would be a cyclops now. Eyeware is a must.....maybe a kevlar helmet.

      Dr. Brian D. Wight


      • #4
        From head to toe. . .

        A few years back, friends from Texas were fishing upstream on the Russian. One of the ladies cast too far, hanging up in the brush on the far side of the stream. She straight-lined her rod, clamped down on the spool, and pulled. The rig came loose, and the sinker, traveling like a bullet, broke her big toe — through her waders.


        • #5
          Great Stuff!

          Thanks for the reply's this is excatly what I am looking for. If either of you guys would be willing to release names and send me your story viva the email address I posted that would be awesome


          • #6
            Passed it on. . .

            Louis, I cut and pasted this thread, containing your requests, to the couple in Texas. Hope they contact you directly.


            • #7
              Be Carefull!

              Just thought that anyone responding to this gentleman/woman might be leary! Sounds like a PETA wolf in sheeps clothing looking for another excuse to stop fishing! I hope and pray that I am Wrong and if I offend the author I am sorry. Moderators can delete this if he/she is credable. Again if I am wrong I appologize but you have left out what magazine you work for as well as other helpful identifying sources. Great stories though!


              • #8
                Cooking a story for whom?

                For what it's worth, one Louis Cusack, who resides in Anchorage, was a finalist in the 2005 Fish Alaska Magazine's recipe contest with Louie’s Seafood Etouffé. Perhaps the "Louis A. Cusack" making the request for stories in the original post could tell us which magazine he's going to write for?

                By the way, the etouffé recipe looks like a knock-out. It can be viewed at:


                • #9
                  hook in the eye

                  When my son was about 8 we were king fishing up the Deshka. I was about 50 feet upstream from him when I heard a scream that I initially thought was an eagle until I looked at him.

                  He had a big pixie dangling from his eye. It had snagged and he jerked it in. Amazingly it pierced the outer skin of his eylid without going all the way in to his eye and then curved around and came back out his eylid past the barb with about 1/4 inch of skin between the entry and exit. So it was hanging there pulling his lid down off his eye.

                  As I held him, the two friends we went with carefully sliced the outer skin of his eylid and freed the hook. Then we patched up his eye and went home. It all healed up fine. I have photos of him there on the Deshka and they are heart wrenching.

                  We keep the pixie hanging on his wall along with the king tag for that year as a reminder.
                  Wasilla Real Estate News


                  • #10
                    I have a short essay I wrote last year regarding this very subject. It's posted on my website at: (shameless website plug, I know).

                    I've seen plenty of body parts skewered over the years; eyes, thumbs, ears, cheeks - you name it. I cringe whenever I see folks fishing without eye protection - especially children. Not sure where I'm going with this post other than to say to the initial thread poster that I have a short story regarding this subject on my website that you are welcome to review...



                    • #11
                      There is actually a california court of appeals case where someone got whacked in the face by a banana weight mooching in southern california. Somebody next to them on a party boat got there weight hung up in some kelp and just pulled back on it instead of grabbing the line. Launched that weight at the people on that boat railing like a catapult on Kingdom of Heaven. Ouch.

                      These weights are often of the 4-8 oz variety. Musta done some damage.

                      As stupid as the move was, the court ruled that bad methods of extracting weights out of kelp, as with most other mistakes in sport (unless intended to hurt someone), are assumed risks, so you can't sue people even if they hit you in the eye. At least in California.


                      • #12
                        Be Careful My Hind End!

                        Hey thanks for posting the link! That is indeed my shinning face and I am one of the finalist for both the 2005 and 2006 Recipe contest.
                        Here is another link that will kelp dispel the conspiracy theory.
                        Some guys on this thing seem to think there is an enemy behind every blade of grass!

                        I left out the magazine because it was a request to submit the article. The request was made by Fish Alaska Magazine. I do not work for them, so I was reluctant to list the magazine name. I submitted this article as a suggestion and they asked if I might be interested in attempting to write it. It is my 1st endeavor at writing an article. You conspiracy guys just kill me!

                        Thanks Again Marcus,


                        • #13

                          Louis, If you would have read my ENTIRE post you would have noticed that I appologized if I offended many times in my post. I was asked for an interview when I lived in Montana about fly fishing for trout by, unbeknownst to me a PETA rep. He misrepresented himself in the beginning, but I was leary of him so I researched him and found that he indeed worked for PETA. Your Post sounded like the perfect setup! I do not understand why you are getting your panties in such a bunch since I apologized in original post many times. Sorry one more time! I hope your article is a success. You left a lot of room for speculation.


                          • #14
                            I was rafting the Kenai a couple years back and my dad hooked into a red, the fish spit the hook and the slinky weight came flying at my face. I saw it coming and turned my head, it hit me right in the temple. It was an awful pain. If I hadn't have been looking it would have hit me in the eyes. I also have been hooked in the ear, that wasn't fun at all. The back-cast flyfishing on a windy day got me there, the barbless hook was easy to get out thankfuly.


                            • #15
                              Chucking Streamers!

                              One day while chucking very large streamers on the Yellowstone River in Montana with a buddy I lodged a big one in the back of my head. We were floating in the fall looking for the giant browns that spawn in that system. I was throwing a #1 SuperStreamer with a 7wt fly rod. I saw a really big fish roll in some riffles about 80ft away. I hauled a big back cast and came forward with a lot of power to get the big fly out there. Well that big cone head streamer came ripping forward low and fast and hit me in the back of the head. My buddy said here heard a loud POP and looked over to see me slump down in the front of the boat. It almost knocked me out. The hook lodged itself in me scalp and had to be pushed through and cut off then pulled back out, all on the river.


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