Sept/2015 Ukee

Discussion in '2015 Saltwater Fishing Reports' started by Ddog, Sep 10, 2015.

  1. Ddog

    Ddog New Member

    Just got back from Ukee on a long 19 hour trip home, pretty bagged out, but as always, looking towards the next trip in 2016.

    Here's what happened during our 5 day outing:

    Day 1, Thursday Sept 3, went out to Rat's Nose in the AM. There were about 5 boats scattered around in the area. We fished white, green spatter back 4.5" hootchies, plugs and a few spoons. We got 3 springs between 10 - 15 lbs. The Cohos weren't around like in past years and only caught about 10, keeping 2 hatchery. I had 3 rookies with me that are fishermen, but never offshore in the salt. We ran 2 rods off each rigger, catching the springs down deeper at ~ 140' in 175 ' water depth. We fished for Hali on big bank for around 2 hours, but managed to only get 1 about 15 lbs. Weather was pretty choppy, but calmed down in evening.

    Day 2, looked at the weather the night before and headed out for Tuna. This was my first tuna outing in my boat and went solo, (which isn't the best idea). I have done a lot of research in the past few years on albacore fishing, but wasn't able to get out for various reasons. Didn't line up to get any salt ice the day before and couldn't reach anyone to get some, so we went to the Coop and picked up 25 bags of cubed ice. Headed out to Barkley, got into the 60 degree water pretty quick, but I can't remember what mile we were at. We headed to the bottom of Barkley canyon and kept going southwest to the bottom of Nitnat. The water temp was 63+ for most of the time, but I seen it hit 64 for a short time. We ran 2 hand lines and 5 rods with blue over green Zukers. We ran birds with daisy chained Zukers off the hand lines. 2 Rabbits off the longest lines off the back.

    We started about 50 miles out after seeing a few birds working an area. We got the first one after 10 minutes on the troll, the rod was zinging out, but didn't slow the boat for about a minute. I brought 4 big bags of smelts from alberta and we chummed a little bit after the first hook up. No other takers, so we reeled the fish into the boat. What a beautiful fish they are, real cool looking with everything on their body aerodynamic, from recessed long fins to flat eyes mating to their body. Everything built for speed. We caught 2 in about the first half hour and kept trolling SW. We were now about 60 miles out and never had a bite for 3 hours. Found out later, that we went way too far. We pulled up and came back around the 45 mile mark at the bottom at Barkley. We got one right away and continued to catch them with several doubles and one triple. What a blast! those things pull. Our boat driver saw a tuna jump 20 yards off the port side, I jumped up grabbed my Loomis 1266 rod with a butterfly jig and made a cast. 2 seconds later the tuna slammed the jig and started pulling like crazy. I had on 50 lb braid, with 50 lb floro leader. These fish are not like Salmon, when a big salmon runs, you give him some line until your able to gain some back. When you give these tuna some line, you don't get a chance to get it back like you do on a salmon. You have to keep putting pressure on these fish until they come in. I got the fish up to the surface twice, but the boys didn't get the gaff into it. I was lifting the tuna one last time and snap, the rod broke in half and the braid hit the prop and cut it off. I just laughed and shook my head. There were 4 tuna boats that came into the area and were working within a mile of us and coming within a 100 yards at times before making a turn. (with them there, I knew we were in the right area, but we were running out of time quickly). Each time a tuna would come in, it was brained, gills cut and hung by it's tail in a 45 gallon drum mounted on the back on the platform. We bled them for about 15 minutes, then I would cut the lining around the gill and throat area, snap the backbone at the top of it's head and the guts would pull right out. I had seen this on a video and I thing it's the best way to get them cooled down quickly because you can shove ice into the body cavity too. We started to keep the rods in as a tuna was caught on each rod and it took about 10 minutes to keep all 5 of them in. (sure wasted our time when we were out at 60 miles). The wind came up in the afternoon and it was time to go back to Ukee. We were punished for the next 3 hours and 20 minutes on the drive back in, but we had the attitude that we will get there when we get there. This was something new for me, but will definitely do it again if stars line up next year.

    Day 3 - cleaned up the tuna, vac sealed and got them to the blast freezer. Got out on the water at about 1:00 PM. Fished Turtle head and south bank using the same lures as the first day and also some anchovies. Only got 3 springs and a handful of small coho. Springs again were down deep. After some tangled lines in late afternoion, we went in for a Rum or 2.

    Day 4 - Slept in a little and never got on the water until 9:00. Went to Way point, lots of boats, got 4 nice springs between 18 to 25 lbs. Used green spatter back and white hootchies, a few blue/silver spoons. Fished ~ 60-70' down, in ~ 75-100' water depth in tight to the shore. Lots of boats hooking up. Went out to Starfish and tried for some hali using bellys & gills. Got snagged up on the bottom quite a bit on the drift, which was a bit of a pain. Only got one small hali and an assortment of rockfish. (Slowest hali fishing I've ever had, wasn't lucky enough to be in the exact area I guess??

    Day 5- went back to Way point, caught 4 nice springs, with one going 30 lbs. Same method and depth as previous day, running at 2.5 - 3.5 MPH with hootchies and spoons. Lost a few other nice fish, before getting our limit of 4. Headed out to NW corner to try for hali. Spent 3 hours anchored in the same spot, using gills, bellys and various jigs. Only caught 1 - 36 lber and lost another near the top. First year ever - didn't catch one dogfish, WTF??, but that's OK. It was now time to scramble and head for the ferry and the long trip home to Alberta. Can't wait for next year!!

    Good luck out there guys!
  2. Pippen

    Pippen Well-Known Member

    Very nice!!!

    What was the final count on the tooners? Well done as far as it doing it yourself for the first time!

    I have been once and learned a lot with Tofinoguy but sure wouldn't want to try it without someone who had some experience to kick off the tuna career!
  3. Ddog

    Ddog New Member

    We came in with ~ 21. Some nice sized ones too. I didn't take any pictures, but the guys I was with took a bunch that they will be sending me and I will try to post some if I can figure out how. I had the GoPro running at times, but no idea what we have for video. I'm packing for camping this weekend and not much time, but will try to get something posted next week.
  4. Dogbreath

    Dogbreath Well-Known Member

    Cool report Dog!

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