Nothing To Do With Woodworking...
I have a friend that lives in Pa. I met him in 1987 when I was in Alaska and we fished a lot together. I haven't seen him now for several years since I moved to Texas but we visit on the phone at least once a year. My friend does not live in Alaska except for the summer months and then goes home in the fall.
He phoned me this week and told about an incident that just made me shiver, and because it is so unusual I am going to share it with the members of the forum. But first I need to set the scene.
In July on the Kenai River there is a trememdeous run of sockeye, oftenr called Red salmon, most of these fish are taken by commercial fishermen but in order to sustain the run, on certain day the commercial fisherman can't fish and this allows the fish to enter the river to be able to spawn to insure fish for future years. These fish come into other rivers as well as the the Kenai by tge wat, And since the run is in July at the peek of the tourist season there are latterly hundreds if not thousands of people fishing for these prized fish.
When the sockeye enter fresh water they quit feeding, their only purpose, once they leave the ocean is to get to their spawong grounds to reproduce and die. Since they won't take bait the way to catch them is with a long shanked hook on a leader that is about 30" long with a sinker attached at the 30" position. The fish swim close to shore where the current is not as strong as it is in the center of the river. The fish will rest along the banks from time to time before continuing their journey up stream and they come in by the thousands.
In order to catch the fish the fishing line with the hook and sinker on it is cast up stream and ahead of where the fish are resting and as the current brings the hook down stream the leader will come across the open mouth of a resting fish and when you feel this and yank the fishing rod the hook is pulled into the side of the fish's mought and the battle is on. By the way, the hook can not be left bare, but has to have some sort of feather or even just a piece of colored yarn on it to be legal and the fish much be hooked in the head and not snagged in the body.
Well it is commone to have a fish on and fighting hard and the hook will come out which caused it to snap back with great force right back at the fisherman and ofter get caught in the fisherman's flesh or even in their eye. The local hospital is busy all day long dealing with such accidents when the fish are running.
The tourist that are not familiar with what I have just described, in their ignorance will oftern cast out to the center of the river or further in their attempt to catch a fish.
Well, the other day, when visiting with my friend from Pa. on the phone he told about a guy that had cast clear across a river and hooked another fisherman on the opposite bank in the eye and then jerked the man's eyeball right out of it's socket, ooooh, that must have smarted.
By the way, if anybody reading this is familiar with the area, the creek that this happened at was Bird Creek south of Anchorage, not down on the Kenai.
I have another sockeye story to tell you. One time I was making a video for a RV camp. This RV park is right on the Kenai River and has a board walk for the guests to stand on while fishing for sockeye salmon. I needed a shot of a tourist catching a fish for the video. There was a man fishing off by himself, it looked like a good prospect so I went up near him and set up my camera and tripod and started a conversation with him and after maybe five minutes I told him what I wanted, that being aa video iof him catching a fish. His reply was, well I'm not having any luck, I haven't even got the first hit yet and I've been here for quite awhile.
He was, what we call a true Chee Choc o, a person ignorant about Alaska, but a very nice guy, his problem was the he was casting out to the middle of the river which, I said earlier is not the way to catch a sockey or what we call a Red Salmon.
I had gotten well enough acquainted with the man to tactfully suggest that he just cast up stream from where he was standing about three feet out from the bank and let his hook drift back down. I had to be careful as you can imagine, I didn't want to offend him by making him look foolish for fishing as he was. He agreed to do what I suggested just to appease me I guess, but when he hooked up with a nice fish on his first try, boy was he happy and my video shot was just what I wanted for my customer's video of fishing at their RV park. Needless to say I made a new friend and he was telling everybody in the park about it.
Well, that's just another of my fishing stories. If the moderators tell me to keep things to the subject of woodworking I will understand, but when I heard about the guy getting his eyeball jerked out I just wanted to tell about it.
I have lots of storys of those years when I lived in Alaska, they are some of my dearest treasures.