I flew out of Anchorage to Yakutat.
On the way to Yakutat, we stopped in Cordova. It was beautiful. It made me wonder if I could live off the grid out here.
I arrived in the evening and the crew of my boat picked me up. We dropped off my belongings in my new stateroom and went out for dinner. There is no cell phone coverage in this town, but the bars/restaurants have slow wifi occasionally. Everyone is on their phone. We aren’t allowed to use Skype. In fact, the password was “nofnskyping”.
The next day we were under way. The harbor was beautiful.
As soon as we left the harbor, the weather got (to use a nautical term) shitty. I wanted to die. If I sat up, I would start sweating and was sure that I would vomit all over my new boat. I didn’t eat for 24 hours. I didn’t really move. The captain asked me if I was sick as I was running to the head. He said that I looked pretty green. I felt a little better to hear that one of the crew was throwing up and another also couldn’t get out of bed.
The next day was slightly better. I eventually got to work. I busted my butt for a week. There was no normal schedule as the crew was on their last trip of the season and needed to catch all of their fish while I was on board. They utilized “sleep turns”. They would sleep for 6 hours and work for 12. All day every day. It was brutal. These guys work damn hard. I couldn’t keep up.
Eventually, they caught all the fish they could. It was a record trip for them. We were at the plant offloading and they plant processor had never seen such a big haul. Obviously, I took most of the credit for their good luck.
After a week, I am being assigned to another boat. I am flying out of Yakutat today and should be in Anchorage tonight. Tomorrow, I am off to Dutch Harbor. I have no idea what boat I will be on or what kind of fish we will be going after. I have a few ideas though. My life is a series of “hurry up and wait”.
The village of Yakutat has no cell phone reception, but it does have the Situk River. It is one of the best rivers to fish for Steelhead and Salmon. There are all kinds of people at the airport, but most of them have rods. I am a bit jealous.
I was warned not to walk along the road because Brown bears have been spotted beside the roads. I didn’t see any.