Thursday, May 13, 2010

Live Catch

Rich has been out with Sean a few times recently on his live catch boat.

I talked him into taking the point and shoot camera along so I could see how it works til I get a chance to follow them around with my camera.

I thought some of you might be interested as well.

You can read some earlier posts about Sean's boat here and here.

This day they went out of Port Orford.

It's a small working commercial fishing port about and hour north of us.

It is a little unusual.

Tide dictates the time of day you put in and haul out here.

On this day the start time was late morning.

This live catch thing is interesting for several reasons...
They fish with fishing poles...
which isn't all that unusual for fishing I realise...
but I guess I never thought of commercial fishing with poles.

See that point way over in the upper right?

That's Cape Blanco.

Cape Blanco is the most westerly point on the continental United States.

It's also home to the most southerly light house on the Oregon coast which was built in 1870.

Yup that's it.

Right there.

What that means is that it's a pretty exposed section of coastline.

It also clocks some of the highest wind speeds on the coast.

Which is why our favorite windsurfing lake from this post and this post is located just on the other side of that point

It can be a heads up kind of place.

It has a healthy reef.

The guys really like fishing here.

You can see some of the rocks that form the reef in the distance here as they head in at the end of the day.
A pretty nice way to spend a day huh?

Here is what makes this port a bit unusual.

Because of it's rugged location there are no docks or ramps.

Every day, around the clock, tide and conditions permit... boats put in and haul out using this crane system.

This obviously isn't Sean's boat.  They took this picture from their boat.

One day I'll go play paparazzi for them and check it out.

Apparently it's a sort of cheap entertainment for a group of the locals who bring their coffee in the mornings and come to watch.

Makes sense to me.

The other boats wait for their turns to first unload their day's catch, and then be hoisted up by the crane.

This is why tide matters.

They want a good amount of water in there while they are making all these maneuvers.

As they catch the fish throughout the day, they put them into this aerated tank built into the deck of the boat.

The goal is keep them all alive and active.

These fish ultimately go to fish market tanks and restaurants in the San Francisco Bay area.

These are the guys you see in the tanks swimming around.

They sort the fish by types into these baskets for the buyer.

And then they use a sort of pulley system to unload at the buyer's dock area.

Elevator up.

The crews ride up and down with the boats.

Sean replaced these straps the next week and double checked all the eye plates they clip into.
Confidence in your straps and eye plates is a good thing.

It could get ugly.

By the time it's all unloaded, hauled out, on the trailer, and cleaned up it's time to call it the end of a good day.

The gifts of this day?

 The drop dead beauty of the Oregon coast.... 
 how could you not feel close to God out there?...

And a little father-son time.

They both speak the language of boats (constantly) and really love time on the ocean.

It's a really physical job.
Rich came back tired and sore but loving every minute of it.

Remember to stop and notice the beauty of wherever you are,


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