King Me – The Duxbury Finale
I thought I would call it season but Chet’s words keeps haunting my mind.
“I got enough salmon, I just want the BIG ONE to end the season”, and that’s all it took to continue the hunt.
I arrived in the darkness at the launch. From the distance I hear the waves crash along the path way to the beach. Hmm… it can’t be that bad right? (Mistake 1)
I walked over to look and decide.
“I could work the lulls and sets. I’ve fished in worst conditions! ” (Mistake 2).
“It should be fine, I haven’t flipped in two years.” (Hubris comes before the fall).
Crazy Fisher arrives shortly and we unpacked the gear for the long day ahead.
With the Kayaks unloaded I decide to catch the end of a lull. As I’ve done multiple times, I push my yak forward and jump on my yak. My suit gets stuck in the lawn chair (The big negative with the new Hobie chairs) and it goes south from there. I get hammered by a wave and get pushed back to the launch — no broken gear so no foul, except my new NCKA sticker.
I steady the bow of the yak again and make a clean launch. Crazy follows behind me and we make it to the grounds as the cattle and private boats arrive at dawn. I head to a GPS point I marked and spot stacks of bait (GOOD SIGN).
HOURS PASS WITHOUT A SIGNLE NET FLYING…(BAD SIGN)
And the prospect of landing chrome started to look grim. (I wish I had a cold beer and dirty magazine at this point)
BREAKFAST IS SERVED
Around 9:30 a.m., the first cattle boat pulls out a net and pulls up the first fish of the morning….Then another and another. I look on my fish finder and see large holes and gashes in the bait ball — SALMON!
“HERE’S THE BITE” I thought , as I see another net fly.
Then I see what I came for. My rod tip TAPS TAPS TAPS before it violently jerks my line and rod. I grab the reel and hammer down to set the hook!
It blast straight for the surface and I see the flash of chrome before it dives down. My reel peels line and becomes loose as the fish dashes my direction. I hammer back on the reel to retake line. My rod bends over into the water from the pure weight of the fish as the line zips from the reel. It sprints to the surface and I see the oval chrome fighting feverishly to dislodge my hook. My heart stops as I see it turn around and jumps the surface of the water like a trained acrobat. I knew this was it.
THE ONE I CAME FOR.
THE ONE TO END THE SEASON.
I pull my net and by instinct it splits one last time — shaking and pounding my rod. Finally it runs under my boat and from pure exhaustion concedes the fight. I net it and was immediately taken back by the size. WOW!! Personal best for sure!
Crazy pulls up and we take some photos and I take a second to re-gather myself. As fast as it came the bite was gone leaving hundreds of boats thirsty and frustrated.
It’s like a going to a bad strip show. You blow a lot of money for a shot at a looker only to go home frustrated and broke at the end of the night. Broke, beaten and frustrated you go home to look at porn…ok ok..fish porn.
THE SURF TAKES NOT PRISIONERS
We called it day shortly after 1 p.m. After a long peddle I arrived at the beach.
“hmmm…, the launch looks a lot better than it did this morning. It should be an easy landing in…” (FINAL MISTAKE). I time the sets and waves before making my final decision to head in. I catch the wave but soon realize…
“SHT…I’m F*ked” As the wave lifts my yak.
I’m getting Crucified for sure; But the gods, in their humor, provided mercy and flipped me sideways. My rod and net dunks in the surf. Chopper (NCKA) dashes head on into the surf to help and save some gear.( He gets a chovie thumbs up for not thinking twice about helping a brother.). I get the typical onlookers and giggles as we drag my gear to the launch.
Crazy pulls up to the surf line and takes his own baptism. He loses a rod, reel and some gear. The gods have mercry but they are not a push over –Blood is demanded.
We called it day as we pack the gear and yaks.
“ Damn Jon”
“Yeah, I guess I donated to the gods, let’s go grab lunch and beer”
“SHT, Let’s get hammered!”
The Lost Anchovy