While dipnetting is reserved for state residents only, fishermen and women of all kinds can appreciate the work involved on a typical dipnetting trip! Among other things that it takes:
- Lots of strange gear for standing in cold water
- Handling and transporting an expensive, HUGE net used to catch the salmon, mainly during the incoming tides
- Camping gear for staying on the sandy beach, typically combat style where you are sharing the space with many other people because the dipnetting windows of summer are popular
- Patience to deal with the salmon run itself and all of the people, dogs, noise, idiocy, 4 wheelers, etc. around you. This last trip, we even had fireworks thrown in just for an extra bonus; I’ve been dipnetting many times, but that was a new one for me.
- Lack of sleep due to the above and the crazy tide schedule
I’m sure I’ve forgotten some things, but with that list also comes these benefits:
- Epic weather full of brilliant, mind-blowing sunrises and sunsets
- Humor and laughter, and lots of it to help with the patience factor
- Drinking and Eating on a strange schedule-I like when I can just do whatever, whenever
- Conversations with folks of all types. Dipnetting brings out the rednecks, but it also brings together a mixture of all types of people, many ethnicities, all of which love eating fish so we at least have that in common.
- And of course, beautiful Sockeye salmon!
Check out my other entries on fishing in Alaska.
And for all anglers out there, hope you are grabbing a great catch soon!