The last few weeks have been amazing for numerous fishing buffs pursuing fins on the lower peninsula. Especially if they were able to drag their gluteal regions out of the horizontal position at quasi-dark-thirty.
Unless you have a vampire dangling from a branch of your family tree, it won’t kill you some of you to start flinging lures around dawn’s early light.
It’s been nice to put those years of low returns in the review mirror for a while and not be subjected to the old saying that “The fishing was so bad that even the liars didn’t catch any.”
Turk and Wild Willie went after the silver beasts gliding up the Anchor and claimed they stepped through a time warp straight into the halcyon and nostalgic days of primo fishing.
They arrived before dawn had a chance to yawn and were home before it peeked one sleepy ray over the horizon.
The river was so hot that even my bud, W.W., managed to land his first king of the season after losing enough gear over the last couple of fortnights to restock The Sportsman’s Warehouse.
I’m not saying the grizzled grump is cheap but his only fishing rod is last year’s model of a Dumpster Diver Select featuring eyelets secured with Gorilla Glue and an antediluvian reel he calls “Frankenspin” lashed to the pole with double-wrapped Duct Tape.
He proudly dubbed it that because the bizarre contraption resembles a mélange of Shimano, Mitchell and Pflueger body parts with a touch of Zebco gears to add class. The man has no shame.
Nevertheless, he ended up with a stunning fish and a striking end to a super chinook season on the river.
As for me, I was sent elsewhere on a mission to supply fresh fillets so my bride could employ her culinary expertise when it comes to morphing a slab of king into an epicurean delight that makes one feel more hedonistic with each savory morsel.
I’m usually not dispatched on such a solemn errand but her oldest sister from Ohio was coming to stay with us for a few days and we didn’t have a perch or a bluegill in the freezer so chinook would have to do.
It meant, of course, that I would have to hit my favorite spot by 02:30 and watch Tom-The-Fish-Master make me look like a kiddie pool novice while he launched his double-secret stinky stuff to limit out before I could get a hook in the water.
I’m used to it by now. Normally I do just fine after he’s finished and kicks back with a fine cigar to critique my technique after getting my assurance that I’m unarmed.
Things went well and her sister, who is a slight lady, ended up consuming enough sautéed barbequed salmon to make a grizzly envious.
I hope the word doesn’t get around the Buckeye state referencing my bride’s gourmet skills. She has enough siblings back there to field a football team so I’ll be in deep guano if they abruptly show up during the Coho runs.
As for The Fourth, I’ll be staying close to our little piece of paradise because of the imposing crowds expected and I don’t do well in masses of more than four.
This weekend should be a prime example of The Homer Spit and its infamous Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon returning to the days when parking spaces and elbow room were at a premium.
The fleets of various vehicles and camping sites will resemble pre-war invasion buildups with campfire smoke nearly equaling the fumes emanating from overheating Visa card stations.
Remember when U.S. Representative Hank Johnson of Georgia back in 2010 turned some heads with a comment he made about the U.S. territory of Guam during a House Armed Services Committee?
In a question and answer period about a scheduled military buildup on the Pacific island, Johnson expressed some concerns about the plans to Adm. Robert Willard, head of the U.S. Pacific fleet.
It went like this:
“My fear is that the whole island will become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize,” Johnson said. Willard paused and replied, “We don’t anticipate that.”
If Johnson visits The Spit over the holiday, he’ll probably do a hasty retreat and spend his time glassing it from a safe pullout on Skyline drive in apprehension that the point of land will sink.
Can’t say that I blame him. We’re taking bets that the point of land will rise six inches after the horde’s exit-traffic dies down on Tuesday.
Summer has definitely arrived in our inimitable burg.
Nick can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org if he isn’t trying to convince Willie to upgrade his gear to a willow stick, twine, and a size 3 safety pin.