We'd put some fish in the cooler, but we were still looking for the ominous 35lb'er. Both boats got going at first light. Our group headed up to a new spot and the other group anchored in the old standby pool.
We put anchor down, enjoyed some coffee and wax donuts, and waited. Within the hour, the inside rod(assigned to me) went down and line started peeling off the line. Chad was first to the rod holder and quickly handed me the rod. The power of this beast was incredible. Could it be the big fish we were looking for? The line stopped running and Chad shouted "Oh no, I think there's a seal back there". Dom chimed in with "No, I think its an otter......wait, I think the otter is what we've got?" I thought, no, this couldn't be......it's a big fish, don't ruin this for me. Well, turns out Dom was right. We had the Otter! The mammel ran downstream and almost spooled me. We followed him while trying to stregize about line recovery. He ran across some seriously heavy water and hopped out on the bank. The spinner was attached to his shoulder and after a quick shake, thankfully, the lure fell out and we recovered the whole rig!
After the excitement, we jetted back downstream to meet up with the skunk crowd to find that nothing had changed there. They hadn't had a takedown and looked as sad as ever. We anchored next to them and sure enough, 30 minutes later had a fish on. Our group hooked and landed a small hatchery fish around midday. Dom and Brad had to take off, so we ran them back to the landing and into town to fill up on Gas. It was a good break and re-engergized us for the afternoon.
Back at the boat ramp, the other group was taking out. Chad was nice enough to clean a fish and give them some meat to take home. We put the sled back in and jetted back up to our productive spot. We did get 1 more fish that afternoon, but the evening was slow. The highlight ended up being the fresh fish cooked by Chef Potter.
On the last morning, we were hoping to get at least 1 more hatchery fish to take home. After anchoring up, we only waited about an hour before the rod went down. We got our hatcher fish, this one about 25lbs, in the cooler. As soon as we got settled again, the rains came and things got wet. We knew our camp was getting drenched but there wasn't anything we could do about it. We caught one last fish that morning. It was a hard fighting native that took a couple of incredible upstream blasts. An awesome way to end the trip for sure. We wrapped up around noon and made our way back home. What an awesome weekend in a awesome place. Thanks to Captain Chad, we hooked some fish...........and one mammal.
An otter....not the one we met though