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Why do we spend so much money on gear

PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 7:33 am
by Carol W
One evening I am trolling off of Whale Bay, the ocean is nice and there is going to be a nice sunset. So I am running gear after dinner there is a small clatter of coho on the gear and of coarse a handful of smilies, which were really frownies cause we were shaking them and of coarse they were nice fish. So I was fishing a 36crlp hootchie and a nice king came up in the middle of the gear and by the time I shook the fish the hootchie was gone and only a bare hook remained. Now it was getting on into the evening and being the last line, there was a nice pile of coho on deck that needed to be dealt with so I reset that line bare hook and all. I cleaned my coho and got them down below by the time all this was done i had made the corner off of Lauder and boats were headed into Still Harbor, so I started stacking the gear. There were some Coho on the gear along with some nice Kings as the evening bite of frownies was starting, so along came that bare hook and wouldn't you know it there hung a 25 pound King. I was a bit dumb struck as looked at that fish hanging on a bare hook, this was before the dog fishery and the idea of catching a salmon on a bare hook was completely foriegn to me. I pulled the rest of the gear and cleaned the deck up as I chugged for Still Harbor, watching the sunset over my sholder. Now I didn't know many of the guys in the Sitka fleet then and didn't have a radio parnter to tell my story to, so I poured a drink once the anchor was down and contemplated that fish on the bare hook. One of my weaknesses in life is I am a bit of a hootchie junkie there is no way I can walk into a gear store and not walk out with some hootchies even if they are some off the wall color that will probably never hit the water. So as I had my drink I thought about how stupid it is that under my bunk there is a small fortune in hootchies and in my gear cabinet there is just as much value in spoons and flashers and yet I can catch a fish on a bare hook, my head spun.

A long time ago when I had the little Antares I had bought a pack of odd ball hootchies from I beleave it was Wells Fishing Supply out by the NSRAA office (I may be wrong on the name but most of us know where I am talking about) so I threw the pack of hootchies in my storage bin and forgot about it. A couple years ago I was winter fishing off of one of my favorite winter drags in Clarence Strait ( and yes Eric that is as specific as I will get) so there wasn't much happening yet I thought there were some fish around. So I started digging through my bins of hootchies and I came up with this old pack of hootchies and though I might as well give it a try I wasn't catching anyway and had nothing to lose, so I tied one up putting a north pacific 100 inside and went out and threw it on a line, the line no sooner got out on the pole and it was jerking with a fish on it sure enough it was on that hootchie. So I went inside and tied up another one and put it on a main, and same thing another nice fish, so of coarse the whole pack was tied up and placed on the gear, well I wound up with 15 kings that day and made $1500, so you just never know what is going to catch fish and that is why I keep feeding that hootchie addiction.

Re: Why do we spend so much money on gear

PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:08 pm
by fvsedna
Nice story...thanks...

Re: Why do we spend so much money on gear

PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2011 5:07 pm
by Salty
Great stories Tom. Thanks a lot. I have a few hootchie buying stories and they almost always turn out bad. Here is one.

A few years back Sarah and I made our annual move to Cross Sound the last week of August to put in a couple of weeks fishing Three Hill out of Elfin Cove before hanging up the summer season. After we got into Lisianski I had Sarah steer while I got the 10 flashers a line I was running all ready. Then I came in and steered and gave her about 60 coho hootchies of various flavors to put on the flashers and set up ready to go in the pit.

"Any pattern you want," she asked? "No, just make sure each line has the same flavor," I said.

So, after a while Sarah comes back in and says: "I hooked them all up and put 20 of that new one on my side and 10 of your best stand bye's on each of your lines".

"Great, we will change your side out as we figure out what they want this year."

We start fishing the next day and her side starts catching 2-3, even 4 or more a line while I am lucky to get a bite and then it is only one a line, nary a single double.

So, I start looking around to match up her hootchies and lo and behold I had only bought two ten packs of them as they were an off brand and an original color combination that I had never used.

"Honey, how about we take the hootchies off your tip and put them on my heavy as the heavies fish better and we can improve our overall production?"

"No way," Sarah retorts, "find another hot hootchie out of the thousands you have stored on this boat."

I swear her side caught over 80% of the coho that fall. In spite of rifling through all my coho hootchies and skunking the gear store in both Elfin Cove and Pelican I did not find either those "hot" hootchies or any others that caught near as well.

Needless to say we now have bought a couple of cases of those and some similar in case they ever light up again.

For a pledge I might share that "hot" coho hootchie.

Re: Why do we spend so much money on gear

PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 9:38 am
by Salty
Sorry, I guess I am supposed to post separate stories on separate threads. Tried to move this story but it won't let me.

Re: Why do we spend so much money on gear

PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2011 7:45 am
by Baker
Good story Carol My dad spent years trying to get Ken McGhees (the Tamarack) magic Abe and Al flasher bend right..