Saturday, June 30, 2012

Meyers Chuck



No Crab… Don’t Care!
RL flew out of the bunk early, early-early, like 0430 early, ready to check the crab pots we had set in the back chuck. The previous evening we had planned to run outside around the point to Union Bay and drop the pots at the mouth of Black Bear Creek, 5 or 6 miles distant, but building winds and waves kept us in sheltered water. We found the pots still held most of the bait, plus one starfish, a small sculpin and several shelled sea snails of some sort, but no legal crab. The Capt. had a chance to try out his new pot puller - it's really going to come in handy when we put out the prawn traps with hundreds of feet of line.

The early morning light winds and low chop lured us outside to move the pots to Union Bay. Ohmigosh, stop the skiff! there were 4 humpback whales right outside the bay, cruising and fin slapping and putting on a show. We drifted a while, enjoying the display, but moved on when the wind began to puff. Our skiff bounced along the chop comfortably but white caps suddenly appeared up ahead. No, not white caps, those splashes came from a pack of Pacific white-sided dolphins. Over two dozen of those sleek mammals converged on the skiff, matching our speed and playing in the bow wake. WooHoo! they’ve done this before with the big boat, but this was the first time they’d surrounded the skiff. RL throttled back and they slowed to match our speed. He sped up and so did they, a few leaping out of the water alongside to throw a splash with their body, flipper or tail while others took turns passing underneath the skiff to surf the bow bubble/turbulence. We played with the pack for ages, until the building swells and chop reminded us that we did need to drop the crab pots and run the 6 miles back to the big boat.

The weather blew up and it was too chunky outside to return safely to the crabbing grounds that evening. Just after dawn the next morning we returned to pull the pots and find the bait was gone and any crab had escaped. Who cared? It was worth it to watch the whales and play with the dolphins. 

If only I had carried the camera with me on that trip!


2 comments:

  1. Seems I remember there were going to be changes to this post office! Great to see these photos. And a big omigosh, whales, dolphins, fantastic moments. ox

    ReplyDelete

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