Tag Archives: Salmon fishing

Fishing with Ivan Part 4D

7 Apr

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

The scenery was beautiful as we continued north on CA-1 to our next stop in San Francisco, CA where we wanted to show our kids some of the sights and sounds of that fabulous city.  First we took them to Ghirardelli Square, where we checked out the shops and bought some chocolates for DiVoran.  Then we took the famous Powell & Hyde cable-car to Fisherman’s Wharf for some really wonderful seafood.  After that delightful experience, we went back to our car and drove down the famous winding Lombard Street with our camper!  I wasn’t sure we were going to make it around some of those curves.

Photo: https://www.queenanne.com/things-to-do/fisherman-s-wharf

Leaving San Francisco, we crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, and took U.S. 101 north to our halfway point for this trip, which was to visit Ivan & Dora in Ft. Bragg, CA.  See there, I told you we would eventually get to them, if you were patient with me for the first half of this road trip.  We had a great visit with Ivan and Dora.  They were a little isolated from their family, and loved seeing us and their grandchildren.  They showed us around their small fishing village of Fort Bragg (pop ~4737), and introduced us to some of their friends there.  One day Ivan took us all out in the woods, close to their house, to collect mushrooms for our dinner.  He showed us how to tell the eatable ones from the poison ones.  Dora grew a lot of the fresh vegetables they ate in her small garden.  The fresh vegetables and mushrooms sure were good with the charcoal grilled steaks we had that evening.  

Photo: https://www.phinneycenter.org/calendar/edible-and-medicinal-mushrooms-of-the-pnw/

Now for the fishing story you’ve been waiting for.  One day while we were there, in Fort Bragg, Ivan took me out on the Pacific Ocean (just the two of us) in his commercial salmon fishing boat, Husky, to show me how he fished for Chinook Salmon.  What an experience that was!    I mostly just watched, helped when I could, and steered the boat once he started letting out his fishing line.  Ivan did all the work, and had his one-man system worked out well.  You couldn’t pay me enough to do that kind of work, but Ivan seemed to love it.

       Photo by Dora Bowers – Ivan’s new fishing boat (Husky)

Ivan told me that he fished alone most of the time, and used the trout line method.  He would use his Lowrance Fish Finder to locate the schools of fish, and then he would put the boat on auto-pilot and let out his baited hooks and line.  Once the line was all the way out, he would make a very large turning circle, and head back, reeling in the line and fish with the aid of a small electric powered winch.  He would ice down the fish, and if the catch was good, he would repeat the procedure all over again.  It was a difficult task, but he seemed to manage without any problem, as long as the seas didn’t get too rough.  

Photo:  https://www.asupervip.top/products.aspx?cid=36&cname=trotlines

—–To Be Continued—–

Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 63 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.

One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10

Fishing With Ivan Part 3A

3 Mar

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

Then there was the time I took my two week vacation from work to do a family trip with Ivan and Dora.  I had finished college by then and we had moved to Florida for me to work on the Apollo Moon Landing project.  As I remember it, DiVoran and I took the kids and flew to San Francisco to meet Ivan and Dora.  Ivan had heard that the Chinook salmon fishing on the Columbia River during spawning season was really great, and he wanted to try his luck at it.  We all loaded into their car, hooked Ivan’s boat up to the car and headed for Astoria, OR.  We were having a great time when, about halfway there, one of the boat trailer wheel bearings froze up and we had to stop and perform an emergency “Roadside Repair” on the thing.

We finally made it to Astoria and got settled in at a motel.  The stories Ivan had heard about the Oregon fishing reminded him of the time he had gone to Alaska and had a wonderful time catching lots of those big fresh Alaskan salmon.  That time he had his catches processed and canned at one of the local canneries, up there before returning, and I remember he had later shared some of that delicious salmon with us.  I’m sure that was the plan for this trip also.

So as you can see, he was planning on showing me how much fun it could be to do that again.  That was the main reason for this fishing trip.  Ivan had also heard that there were Dungeness crabs to be had in that area, so he had brought along some crab traps, so we could have some variety at meal time.  The other reason for our trip was that Ivan and Dora hadn’t seen their grandchildren since DiVoran and I had moved to Florida, and they were looking forward to spending some quality time with them.

Ivan had gone around and talked to some of the locals and some of the other visiting fishermen the night we got to Astoria, to find out where the boat ramp was, where the best fishing spots were, and what kind of bait we should use.  The next morning we got up and got the boat in the water early (not as early as the locals).  We set out a few crab traps on our way to the fishing spot Ivan had selected.  We dropped the anchor and baited our hooks as we anticipated a fun day of salmon fishing.  We were excited to see other fishermen pulling in some really nice Chinook salmon in boats not far from us. 

The time passed, and we didn’t get a single strike.  We tried various bait elevations, and we waited.  We changed bait and waited some more.  Nothing!  What was going on?  We knew the fish were down there because fisherman in boats all around us kept pulling them in and yet, neither one of us was getting a nibble.  At around 2:00 pm, and totally frustrated, we gave it up and headed for the boat dock.  

We stopped on the way in to check the crab traps, and to our surprise we collected more than a dozen legal sized Dungeness crabs.  Not to let a good thing go to waste, Ivan cooked up the crabs for our dinner that evening.  It was “All-you-can-eat” Dungeness crab and it was a wonderful taste treat!

—–To Be Continued—–

Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 63 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.

One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10

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