Seems like starting over…

Posted: September 30, 2014 by Hellcat in Fish Reports

If anyone hard core anglerz out there reading this blog post have gone through a real life change regarding lifestyle because of family or work or both then you’ll feel this with me.

Starting towards the end of my first year of small river driftboat guiding, my only year, it was apparent I wasn’t going to make it. Not this time around. Not without a power boat either. That being said it became financially necessary for me to find a, what I call, ‘real job’. Real fast. My family deserved it. After all, without my wife and son I’m not the man I am today. The man I’m proud to be.

Four months into my new career, when all the traveling and training was done. When my son finally has enough stability to miss me for a weekend around the house…I finally set up a trip to get out. Just me and a friend. A Saturday trip with an early arrival to a place I’ve fished for years and often, year-round. It really felt like I was starting over. Like I hadn’t fished in years. I was so excited. Until…..

Did I mention I unsubscribed to Facebook a few months back? Well, maybe if I wouldn’t have I would’ve known there was a freaking coho salmon drift boat derby the same Goddamn day. That’s right. My first trip out in four months and I show up on a day when way too many other boats had the same plan. Fishing on the weekends only is a hard enough thing to get used to dealing with let alone competing with 75 other anglers that otherwise might have been somewhere else.

A stark reality at that moment. What a shit show.

I should have turned around and went home. I would have caught just as many fish there. Had I known 30 boats were ahead of me I would have arrived much earlier. I can run that river in the dark comfortably and would have gladly done so to get to some of that spooky water first boat. Even pulling up the rear I was able to tie into a real nice big chrome hen by twitching a pink bunny hair jig using the method LPJ showed me on the Peninsula. The jig was tied by a friend and maybe not for that purpose. But it sure worked.

A silver lining.

Being anchored along side the rocky shore in a narrow stretch of river where somehow no boats sat I hopped out of the boat onto the shore. I was wearing only by Boggs low tops and a pair of Adidas sweats covered in egg residue. Mostly cerise in color by this point. Playing the fish through it’s notorious figure 8 tussle it came free right in front of the bank. I reeled the jig in. Hook was sharp. ?? Just one of those things.

A few more fish were bumped but for the most part they wanted nothing to do with anything I had inside my boat. Spooked for sure. But got me thinking about my bait. About how I’ve slacked on any preparation for this year’s fishery. Yes it’s mostly because I’m so busy with the new job and being a daddy of a three year old…but it’s still slacking. I’ve gotta come correct with some fresh bait before my weekend’s trip with Nic Eldridge and Bob.

Enter Pop returning from Alaska with a little bag of goodies for me….

I’ll be curing those up tomorrow for Sunday’s trip.


  1. fishsauce says:

    I can relate with you Chris, welcome to my world. A mans gotta do what he’s gotta do. For me it’s family first, fishing doesn’t even come in a close second. Welcome to the weekend warrior club, but I know you’ll still kill’em once you get back on your A game.

  2. Hellcat says:

    Much respect, fishsauce. Thanks for the comment my man.

  3. Derek Reed says:

    I feel your pain buddy. Feels like I never have enough time to fish as I would like to. With school taking up alot my time and my little girl as well as a new little addition to the family coming in April, I feel im going to get even less time to fish. Like you said family comes first though. Hope all is well brother. Kill some chromers when you get a chance.

  4. Death!! says:

    Im glad your getting back out on the water, cant wait to get a trip planned for us.

  5. Hellcat says:

    Thanks, Derek. It means a lot to know other people are going through this same thing. Much respect.

  6. Hellcat says:

    Dealth Dealer I also CANNOT WAIT. We haven’t fished in over a year.

  7. QDub says:

    Priorities…What a huge word! Welcome to the world of most of us H3llcat. I love fishing i truly do. I hear others stories or see their vids and i think to myself, I wish…My life is taken up with my daily go to work job and taking care of my much loved mom of 94. We do what we must Catman…Relish the days you are lucky enough to be on the water for it is a blessing like no other…Tight Lines…

  8. donaca says:

    I cant think of the last time I have had time to fish let alone fish with you. This real life job thing gets old.

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