Virtual Trip - Upper Base Camp - Kanektok River with Dave Duncan and Sons - Alaska

Little Adam holds the Sockeye Salmon that kicked my butt.


There is a lot of fight in these not underestimate their power..

Heading back to camp for the last night.
It was almost quitting time, so we decided to try our luck at catching one last silver salmon. Adam pulled us into a side pool where the salmon like to hang out. It was about 15 feet deep with little current - more like a big wide pond. We could see a few Silvers and lots of Sockeye. On about my third cast - a large sockeye in spawning colors grabbed my flashy pink fly. This one had started to color up, so I thought this would be easy. Not exactly what I was looking for, but everyone says they are fierce fighters. A lot more fierce than I realized - way more.

The first 3 runs were strong - stronger than I thought they would be. It was nice to hear the reel sing. Adam said let's see if we can land him now. I brought him close, but the fish had other ideas. I wasn't ready for the next run - stronger than any of the previous. (I thought they were supposed to get less and less powerful.) This last run was powerful and fast - so fast that my reel handle battered my fingers and knuckles bloody. It hurt, I was bleeding but wow was this fun! Adam said, "Whoa - that was some run!." We were both laughing at my bleeding hand. Not sure how often the guides see this, but it was a first for me. Kind of like a badge of honor - at least that is what I told myself to take my mind off the pain.

So now Adam says he must be finished. Hmmm - I am not so sure. This time as I bring him close, I grasped the line and rod - above the reel. I wasn't about to get another knuckle buster lesson. He made one more powerful run - this time snapping my 8 weight Sage SP 3 piece at the first ferrule. It was my own fault for holding the line tight. Adam grabbed the line and dragged the fish in - a very large Sockeye - over 10 lbs (estimated by Adam.) Susan took a photo and Adam released the fish.

Now Adam, Susan and I were all laughing even harder - me holding my broken rod with my throbbing, bloody hand. I could not have scripted a better scenario. What a great way to end the trip - getting my butt kicked by a salmon - a Sockeye at that!



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