fishcamp

Susan's folks started set gillnetting for salmon at Cape Kasilof (known locally as Humpy Point), a few miles south of the Kasilof river mouth, in 1947. This was soon after they moved to the area and started their homestead. The early days on the beach moved at a slow pace linked to the ebb and flood of the tide and the vagaries of mother nature. Susan has fond memories of growing up with summers spent at fish camp.

The season in those days began in May and ran till the nets began to ice up in October. Picture old Willeys jeeps and wooden dories, linen nets and wooden corks tied to wooden keg buoys. Commercial fishing families spent the entire summer living on the beach. A simple hardworking life with few of the distractions we have today.

 

We still fish at the same spot and you will find us there Mondays and Thursdays from 7am to 7pm from June 25th till August 10th or so. Stop by the fish camp located off of Cohoe loop road. Walk down the stairs to the beach and see what it's like to make a living gillnetting for salmon. We still pull the nets by hand out of open dories though they are made from aluminum now and powered by dependable modern outboard motors.

The boats have to be launched from the beach, sometimes through dangerous Cook Inlet surf. The salmon are picked from the nets, brought to shore and loaded in totes to be delivered to the buyers station where they are weighed and iced. We spend a good deal of time mending nets that are torn up on the rocky bottom or shredded by drift logs and debris.

 

 

 

One or two days of good fishing often make a season for us. It's great to see a load of sockeye like this one from the 1992 season. We are always glad to find flat water and light winds for a fishing day but really need those southwest blows to put fish on the beach.

 

 


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