Alaska has always been synonymous with fish and fishing, and well, maybe bears too. But, when people think Alaska they tend to think fish, and rightly so. Alaska is still home to some of the largest salmon runs in the world.

Alaska Set Netting

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Tuxedni Channel

Last year while running a supply boat around the inlet I had the pleasure of rubbing elbows with many of the fishermen from the Kenai River. Like all fishermen, they’re a hardworking, fun-loving group of guys and helping them brought back memories of my days of commercial fishing.

There are always new places to go fishing. For any fisherman, there’s always a new place, always a new horizon. – Jack Nicklaus

However, across the inlet over on the shores of Tuxedni Channel I was introduced to a different type of fisherman; the set-netter. Their character is cut from the same cloth, and the work is hard and grueling. And although they have what appears to be an advantage of staying close to shore, I’m not at all sure it is an advantage. I’ve seen the go overboard in the cold water, get entangled in the net, and brave the same tempestuous seas as any fisherman. And that advantage of being just offshore and able to come in after the haul just means that their turn around to do it all over again is just that much quicker.

Still, I’m proud to call them friends.

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