Early Wednesday morning under the cover of thick fog, Captain Bob Martin sliced his way through the mirror pond waters of St. Paul Harbor and eased the 39 foot F/V Argonaut in under the dock crane. Under his 9 fish hold covers rested the results of another phenomenal fishing trip. As his crewman Eddie throws lines around the barnacle covered pilings to secure the vessel, Captain Bob leaned out of the cabin with a big grin on his face. He had loaded the boat once again.
Yesterday, Kodiak waters experienced a massive -1.2 foot low tide. The deck of the Argonaut lay 30 feet below. I threw my camera around my neck and made my way down to the deck. The last few feet of the dock ladder were covered in barnacles and seaweed, making it a bit tricky. As the offloading crew of Santiago and Ceasar began “pitching” fish, I caught up with Capt. Bob and asked him about his trip.
On Sunday they headed south and drove all over looking for signs of life on the depth sounder; nothing. They headed further south, criss-crossing the 3 mile state water boundary. At around 4 PM the next day, they found a nice size school of fish and dropped the gear. For the next 6 hours straight, they were hauling huge Pacific Cod over the rail. By 11 PM, Capt. Bob and Eddie had put over 900 cod down in the fish hold.
Below, Santiago loads cod into the brailer, which is then hoisted up onto the dock, placed in a 1000 pound tote, weighed and brought right into the plant for processing.
Santiago takes a breather between brailer loads.
The bite dropped off soon after dark so Bob pointed the Argonaut toward shore and anchored up for the evening. At first light, about 6 AM, they found that big school and soon enough, they were back on the fish. Capt. Bob and Eddie hauled one full hook string after another for the next 14 hours without a break. By about 8 PM, they had put an additional 1500 fish on board. With the hold full, Capt. Bob turned the boat around and plotted a course for St. Paul Harbor and Island Seafoods. With over 2400 fish in 28 hours, this was indeed another successful trip for Captain Bob Martin and the F/V Argonaut.
Inside the plant, the crew is busy processing the fresh catch. Pin bone out fresh fillets are the order of the day. This product will be flown to Seattle and entered into the Pacific Seafood distribution network. Those fresh cod fillets you see in the supermarket just may be from the F/V Argonaut.
Here Muli Muli inspects a 10 pound box of fresh fillets, ensuring consistent, superior quality.
A basket of fresh cod fillets ready to be packed up for shipping.
Give me a call and I would be glad to send some fresh cod fillets your way. Until next time, Enjoy!