1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Ice bergs, Shrimp,.... and other weird things

Discussion in 'Storm Pictures' started by Alaska Boss, Apr 27, 2010.

  1. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    Well, last week a friend of mine who keeps his boat in the water all winter in Valdez, and myself, went on a commercial shrimp fishing trip. The Alaska Dept. of Fish & Game had opened the commercial shrimp pot fishery for the first time in about 20 years, so we decided to give it a shot. The area opened for this was in a fairly remote part of Prince William Sound,.... and just trying to get there at this time of year proved to be a little bit of a challenge,... since all the icebergs in the water don't melt too fast in these cold winter waters,....

    sh 2.jpg

    sh 3.jpg

    sh 4.jpg

    sh 5.jpg
     
  2. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    Because of the winter storms, a lot of the ice chunks end up getting blown into the beach,.... where they sit til they melt,.... which might take a while,... even at this time of year when there's still a lot of snow left right on the beach,.... :nod:

    sh 9.jpg

    sh 10.jpg

    sh 1.jpg
     
  3. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    You just have to go slow & pick your way thru it,... but you can't come thru here at night,... :nono:

    sh 6.jpg

    sh 7.jpg

    sh 8.jpg
     
  4. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    We had our shrimp pots stacked on the back deck,... but the ADF&G only allowed each boat to fish 20 pots,... so we knew we couldn't make a killing with only 20,... but at least we got out on the water for a few days,.... :bluebounc

    sh 11.jpg
     
  5. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    We anchored up for the night with another buddy once we arrived on the fishing grounds,... and the next day dawned blue skies and nice water,.... like going from winter to summer overnight,.... :cool::salute:

    sh 15.jpg

    sh 12.jpg

    sh 13.jpg
     
  6. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    So, we set our pots out when the season opened at 8am,.... then later on in the day we pulled them,.... we used a hydraulic line puller that yanked them up with no effort from around 400 feet down, and coiled the line in a gear tub,.... wesport

    sh 22.jpg
     
  7. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    Then up came our first haul,.... spot shrimp from the icy cold waters of Alaska,... maybe one of the sweetest shrimp found anywhere in the world,.... payup

    sh 23.jpg

    sh 24.jpg

    sh 26.jpg

    sh 27.jpg
     
  8. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    The 3 most common species of shrimp we catch here are (from top to bottom):


    1) Spot shrimp,.. our target species. These are the biggest & best of the shrimp we have here, found in more rocky areas. Their antennas can be over a foot long!

    2) Coonstripe shrimp,... the next biggest, and also a sweet shrimp, but not too many of them.

    3) Pink shrimp,... these are the smallest, and these are generally the "cocktail shrimp". These are generally found in deeper & more muddy bottoms, and in many places are caught in trawls rather than pots, since they are so small.

    sh 50.jpg

    sh 41.jpg
     
  9. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    And occasionally, we caught other things in our pots too,.. like starfish,.... or small fish, like pollock Irish lords or rockfish,...

    sh 25.jpg
     
  10. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    Then we had one pot come up with a tanner crab (snow crab) stuck into the wire mesh,.,.. he got one of his pinchers worked into the mesh, but then couldn't pull it back out, so he just sat there on the outside edge for a free ride to the top,... and saw things he never knew existed,.... :eek:

    sh 46.jpg

    sh 47.jpg

    sh 45.jpg
     
  11. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    But the weirdest thing we caught was this big ole' octopus,.... it's amazing how big of a creature can fit thru a 2" hole when they don't have any bones in their bodies,.... :dizzy:

    sh 33.jpg

    sh 32.jpg
     
  12. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    He did not want to co-operate at all,.... I could barely get him out of there,.... then once he hit the deck,.... he did not want to be picked up,.... and he was not a happy camper when I held him up by his head,.... :gunsfiring:

    sh 35.jpg

    sh 37.jpg
     
  13. DeVries

    DeVries PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,614

    Great pics again Alaska. I am envious of where you live an I have said that before.

    I hope that you have a successfull fishing season and hope that you are in business for a few more years so that I can take my boys up for a trip when they are a little older.
     
  14. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    We anchor up each night in a well-protected little bay, and I went to shore to get some snow to keep our shrimp well-iced,....

    sh 21.jpg

    sh 14.jpg

    sh 19.jpg

    sh 17.jpg
     
  15. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    Thnaks,... and I suppose I will be,... I don't even know what people do on land in the summer,... but some day I suppose I'll have to find out,... lol



    After each pull, we had to pop all the heads off the shrimp,.... and the heads are about half the shrimp,... with razor-sharp spines & edges that stick out, waiting to spear you,...

    sh 30.jpg

    sh 28.jpg

    sh 39.jpg
     
  16. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    So, with one day left, the weather forecast had gale warnings on the inside waters, and storm warnings for the outside waters, with seas building to 24 feet, so we decided to get out of Dodge while the gettin' was good,... but ran into more ice than we had going out,.....

    sh 56.jpg

    sh 54.jpg

    sh 65.jpg
     
  17. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    Finally the ice got so thick there was no way to get thru it,... so we had to go back and run across more open water that had kept the ice blown back against the beaches,....

    sh 70.jpg

    sh 68.jpg

    sh 62.jpg

    sh 58.jpg

    sh 57.jpg
     
  18. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    There are a lot of avalanches along these steep coastal mountains too.....

    sh 77.jpg

    sh 79.jpg

    sh 76.jpg
     
  19. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    Many of these bigger ones won't even melt off the beach until August or September,....

    sh 81.jpg

    sh 84.jpg

    sh 83.jpg
     
  20. Alaska Boss

    Alaska Boss PlowSite.com Addict
    from Alaska
    Messages: 1,951

    But, we made it back to Valdez without getting spanked by the storm,... and passed an oil tanker escort tug that was heading out,.... looking kinda crusty after a winter of battling many storms,... but better weather is right around the corner,.... and a few more people can eat fresh shrimp now too,.... :waving::waving:

    sh 85.jpg

    sh 86.jpg