Thursday, June 27, 2013

Would You Like Some Salmon?

Besides going on the wonderful hike that my comrade described in her Wildlife Wednesday post, we’ve been netting fishies, chatting with anglers, and enjoying the fruits of this labor.  And by this I mean receiving food from friendly Alaskans that apparently have plenty of excess fish!  Last night was our fifth night in a row that we had fresh fish for dinner, halibut to be specific.  A frequent fisher brought us some from his day trip out at sea as a deckhand on an angling boat--Just for the halibut!  We’ve been eating salmon for days and welcomed the change of taste. 

halibut from a fisherman and corn from a coworker

The first night of such friendliness came from two fishermen that brought us an enormous sockeye steak.  One of these men works at a processing plant and is up to his ears in it everyday, so naturally he thought to bring some dinner to the two Florida girls living in the wild... Sockeye is supposedly the tastiest of salmon, and was indeed our favorite. 

The next few nights we had King salmon, the species we work with everyday, from another angler who is out at all hours.  While watching a movie in bed around 11pm we got a knock on the door and a shout: “I got two fish, come take a look! Bring your cameras!” Sure enough, strung on his handy spare rope, were two king salmon: one monster fish and another jack.  Jacks are male salmon that are overexcited and return to the river the same year they left without spending enough time to grow and mature out at sea; hence his smaller size.  Our fishermen friend was so generous that he gave us the entire jack, saying nothing makes him happier than giving away fish.  We have to agree :].

In addition to our good gastronomic luck, the weather has finally smiled.  It’s been dreary cold with rain the past several days, and we were starting to get inner chills from living in the mountains in an aluminum box.  Fortunately, a supervisor figured out the camper’s heating system, and the sun came out!  Yesterday was gorgeously warm with blue sky and sunrays, perfect for moving fish to the raceways.  I even wore a tank top!  And as my roommate told you about, the day before that we got to go on our first glorious hike in absolutely perfect weather.

All this outdoor activity alongside the freshest of food has given us a very healthy week!  And to think—I was worried I’d get pale and plump during my summer away from the tropics :P

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