The fishing world expands faster online than you or I can keep up. Here’s a smattering of what’s new out there.
Ling-a-ding. This isn’t super new, but it’s super gorgeous and needs watching. It’s a bunch of kids spearfishing for lingcod and as someone who enjoys seeing and eating lingcod, it’s beautiful.
Giant squid! A really huge Humboldt Squid popped up in Depoe Bay recently, about an 80-pounder. Before you start thinking Jules Verne here, the squid was only about six feet long and the boat much larger, actually. But it was pretty large for a Humboldt squid, and it made the day for one ship captain in Depoe Bay
Product review: WoolX As sometimes happens when running a blog, companies pitch us on trying out their products. We got a lightweight Merino Wool T-shirt and Boxer briefs from a firm called WoolX. The shirt is solid — held up to multiple washings and trail running, with no problem. I’d be interested in seeing how it performs as a baselayer in cold weather, but it’s a good warm-weather option. The pros-cons of a wool boxer shorts probably aren’t appropriate for discussion on this site. I asked the WoolX marketing folks about how they plan to position themselves against companies like Patagonia, and the company is touting its garment construction features on the necks/armpits of the shirts for comfort and durability. Price points are similar.
Lake Michigan Carp Bonanza: John Montana from Portland is housing the carp up in Lake Michigan.
What can you say about Lake MI? In many ways, it is the hallowed ground for carp on the fly. The fish are big, the water clear, and they eat meat. I will forever be madly in love with the Columbia River, and my home resource has many large carp in it but the finicky nature of clam eating carp makes for an extremely technical carp fishery. You must get close, you must fish small flies with little to no motion…you must see the eat. Lake MI offers challenges, but they differ drastically from those of my home water, and in many ways the big lake is a little more user friendly. You fish bigger flies, and the carp (sometimes) chase them down and eat them. That said, I see a far greater number of “positive” fish on the big C. And therein lies the real challenge with Lake MI. You have to find fish that are in the mood. In a lake this size with thousands of miles of shoreline, that is no small challenge.
SUP Fly Fishing (Via Moldy Chum) So, in my limited experience, Stand Up Paddleboarding is pretty damn tough. I can’t imagine fly casting and landing fish while balancing on one. It’s a cool idea. One time salmon fishing in Tillamook County, Old Rob and I saw two young Pacific City bartenders out in bikinis on SUPs while were out chasing early Fall Chinook with flies. And I hear there are all kinds of babes in Seattle who do Yoga on Lake Washington on these on weekend mornings. I’m just saying maybe we need to expand our horizons here…
Rebuilding Wild Steelhead Populations: (Via Bellingham Herald) Ed Megill on theWashington Department of Fish and Wildlife’s recent decision to stop planting hatchery-raised, winter-run steelhead in most Puget Sound rivers for two-and-a-half years and in the Skagit River for 12 years.
The key to both rebuilding wild steelhead populations and increasing steelhead fishing opportunity is strengthening wild steelhead in rivers with the potential to support abundant, fishable populations – rivers like the Skagit. This will require continuing the habitat protection and restoration work currently underway in western Washington, stopping hatchery operations that impede wild steelhead recovery, and improving the survival of young steelhead as the migrate through the marine waters of Puget Sound.
Op-Ed on ODFW’s Coastal Management Plan: Peter Tronquet, board member of the Native Fish Society opines on the future of Salmonid management in the Oregonian.
Wild stocks are as important to coastal economies as hatchery programs. More than 80 percent of fall chinook harvested along the Oregon coast are wild stocks. The CMP describes an extensive monitoring plan but lacks the budget to fully implement it. Without a robust monitoring plan, which collects data on such metrics as spawner abundance and the percentage of hatchery fish spawning with wild fish, data collection becomes haphazard and management accountability is compromised. Individual wild populations may slip undetected down a path toward extinction.