Our usual acronym is WRBF, which stands for “We’d rather be fishing.” That was our plan for Memorial Day today, and that is what we did. We went fishing. It happened, as it sometimes does, that we enjoyed three hours of fishing on the Snake River without catching a single fish. That happens sometimes, just as it happens sometimes that we catch the legal limit of trout (5 per person) in less than an hour at our favorite pond.
We took our beautiful wooden boat Pisca Dory that my husband Vic built from scratch to Nisqually John launch with some hope of catching bass. Contrary to our anticipation, there was no line for the boat ramp–no wait at all. The river was quiet. The scenery at Nisqually John is superb, surrounded by basalt hills. And, just to keep us interested, bass were jumping and generally active; they simply preferred not to come home with us. And that was okay.
My husband Vic at the helm, steering with a tiller that is part of the motor.
The motor’s foam is a visual narrative of Pisca’s speed, about 12 mph.
Basalt hills on all sides provide a wonderful narrative of nature.
We took Pisca-Dory out fishing on the river Saturday–her first outing in six weeks! The day was lovely and we were so happy to be back in our dory (my husband was recovering from surgery and hefting the boat onto the trailer was out of the question).
We didn’t mind a bit that we were skunked again. We saw a steelhead jump, his brawny pink middle and head teasing us. He was back in the water in a second, and there was no time to take his photograph.
We enjoyed the scenery along the river in our beautiful boat for 3-1/2 hours. My husband took all the photos. I was fishing a tad obsessively.
Snake River colors
We launched Pisca-Dory on the Snake River at Swallows Nest today for her second run. My husband, who designed and built our 19.5-foot dory, wanted to test some new widgets he has added; and, evidently, we were also motivated to take up the challenge of boosting our cold hardiness. We withstood the barely above freezing temperature and biting wind speeds in the teens for more than two hours.
My husband shot the video and initial photo that I incorporated into it, and I wrote the captions, checking with him so I could properly identify the instruments. The new widgets I was sure of identifying correctly were the fishing rod holders.
I was unable to take any photos because I needed at all times to wear my warmest hand gear, which is too chunky and clumsy to make handling my camera possible. I even continued to wear my three-fingered gloves in the boat’s warm heated cabin.
On our Garmin fish finder, we could see fish 12-15 feet below us, but they were, in my husband’s words, “too sleepy and cold” to grab onto our enticing lures, even with the prospect of coming home with us.
The cold notwithstanding, we enjoyed a good time of it. We always enjoy fishing; and fishing is more about fishing than about fish, though we do find it delightful to bring fish home with us.
Until today, I don’t remember when we last took Companion Star II out on the water; certainly it was when “the water” was Puget Sound, and for nearly four years, “the water” has been the incredibly serenely beautiful Snake River.
My husband has built three wooden boats. Companion Star I, built in Tacoma in 1993, was terminally battered by a fierce windstorm that smashed her into our bulkhead. We were living by then on Quartermaster Harbor, on Vashon Island. Next he built Swallow, a one-person kayak/canoe hybrid, in 1994 while we still had Companion Star I. And he built Companion Star II in 1997, on Vashon Island, and we have her still.
And today Companion Star II made her Snake River debut, off the calm shores of Wawawai County Park. The day was beautiful, rowing was calm, and swallows, Caspian terns, and brants flitted about overhead.