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Road Trip!

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  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524

    Wow; those are pretty incredible rigs! I never saw mention about the weight of them, but they sure pack a lot into a small package!

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,035
    edited July 7

    @xwesx said: Wow; those are pretty incredible rigs! I never saw mention about the weight of them, but they sure pack a lot into a small package!

    I did not research dealers in the USA. It may be a opportunity as I have not seen any rig to compare. Probably not cheap.

    PS

    They are pricey. But you would be the only one in the USA campground so well equipped. A nice Alaska rig. You could become the dealer.

    http://www.conqueroraustralia.com.au/images/stories/reviews/490andcommanderprice.pdf

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,990
    edited July 7

    Heh, I could get a Commander S and park it out in the desert somewhere that has line of site wifi. Big awnings, big water tanks, comes with the knives and forks too.

    Would be perfect, just so long as you don't make me actually pull it around. :D

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,859

    Took a fun (and hot) 250+ mile trip in the fintail yesterday, drove through Mt. Rainier National Park, drove around the mountain. Here's a scenic fintail's eye view near the mountain, my friend's 240D in front of me. I can share some other shots if there's any interest:

    image

  • grahampetersgrahampeters AustraliaPosts: 1,616

    G'day

    Pretty spectacular view, from several perspectives. The lenticular cloud over Mt Rainier is something I have wanted to see in real life and the fintail view is a real treat.

    Cheers

    Graham

  • slorenzenslorenzen Posts: 307

    The BIG question is....who's car is faster?

    The 240D or the screamin' Fintail!

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,990

    Nice shot.

    My brother is camping at Custer btw - no pics though.

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,859

    Fintail is definitely faster, although the 240D driver drives his car hard, and generally keeps up. It's the hills that get to him.

    Some other pics:

    image

    image

    image

    image

    image

  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,035

    THe NW has some great scenery. What elevation is that snow. We were about 8000 ft in NM 3 weeks ago and no snow.

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,990
    edited July 15

    My brother reports buffalo, elk, antelope and prairie dogs at Custer today. A bit off-topic (especially since there's no road there), but it's prime time at Katmai. Lots of bears fishing on the web cam. We saw two black bears ourselves last night here in the UP.

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,859

    The snow was most prevalent from 5500ft onwards.

    The only Custer I know in WA is just north of Bellingham, and isn't particularly wild. I assume Steve's brother isn't there.

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,990

    Custer State Park in SD. Some members told me about it a year or so ago and we camped there last summer. Reminded me of Yosemite in some ways - lots of granite and wildlife.

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  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,990

    Anyone on the road? I'm traveling, but flying and without my wife, so this quick trip doesn't count for much. Just good food and reconnecting with friends at the office.

    After a few days at home, we head out for shawfest.com on the way to VA and TN. Will be doing the relatives tour and dropping off some stuff so we won't have to move it. Then home for a couple of weeks before the quick drive to NM and the move (quick, because we'll be traveling with a 10 year old cat who didn't get the road trip genes).

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  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524

    Just finished our annual fishing trip. I'd share, but I don't have any relevant details to hand, nor photos available at this locale. Perhaps if I think about it from home....

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,859

    Thanks!

    @newnewz said: gorgeous pics, gorgeous car! would LOVE one of these beauties

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,990

    Another road trip, another flat tire.

    By the time the TPMS light came on and we pulled over, it was too late. You could hear the leak - nail in the tread. We had just done a pit stop at McDonalds so we probably picked it up in their parking lot. Thirty minutes of horsing around putting the spare on (and yeah, the lug nuts were tight), and another half hour at the nearby service station a mile back and we were back on the road. Quite the Advil moment. Naturally the van is loaded to the gills too, so that didn't help jacking it up.

    Aiming for "the" bridge, and camping early tonight.

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  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524

    Ah, finally! Photos!

    I took the kids and drove to Kasilof for our "annual" dipnet trip. I took the normal get-up: Our 2010 Forester, fishing gear, nets, camping gear, coolers, 3-wheeler & trailer, water, food, and other assorted supplies. The trip is 530 miles one way, so we broke it up into legs. We went down to Palmer on Friday (July 11) night, visited friends in Anchorage on Saturday, traveled the Palmer-to-Kasilof leg on Sunday to set up camp that afternoon, then fished five tides (Mon morn through Wed morn), packed camp, and reversed the legs to arrive home Thursday evening (July 17). Fuel economy averaged a hair over 16mpg... :'(

    This year, however, I purchased a set of heavy duty springs for the car by an Australian company called King. Wow; these things are just fantastic and made an incredible difference as far as how the car handled this load.

    Car on our 2010 trip:

    Car on our 2014 trip after installing new springs:

    "Fish Camp" at Kasilof River beach:

    Sunset (I use that term loosely, as it was nearly 11pm but was still quite light for another hour or more) at Kasilof River beach on Tuesday, July 15:

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,035
    edited August 2

    @xwesx said: Ah, finally! Photos!

    I took the kids and drove to Kasilof for our "annual" dipnet trip.

    Did you catch your limit? What come in there, reds or silvers and kings?

    Beautiful Sunset.....

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524
    edited August 2

    sigh

    No, I did not. It was really slow fishing the whole time. I caught 49 fish with 32 hours in the water. My threshold for "horrible fishing" is less than a fish an hour, but, still, 49 in 32 is pretty slow. I couldn't have possibly asked for better weather, though, so that was a blessing.

    I caught all reds this time. Occasionally I will catch a silver or two, but kings cannot be kept @ Kasilof. There were some pinks being caught, but I was lucky enough not to catch any. :)

    We filleted them and smoked/canned the majority. Tasty stuff and I'm really glad that we went after a two-year hiatus (work-related).

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,035

    @xwesx said: sigh

    No, I did not. It was really slow fishing the whole time. I caught 49 fish with 32 hours in the water. My threshold for "horrible fishing" is less than a fish an hour, but, still, 49 in 32 is pretty slow. I couldn't have possibly asked for better weather, though, so that was a blessing.

    I caught all reds this time. Occasionally I will catch a silver or two, but kings cannot be kept @ Kasilof. There were some pinks being caught, but I was lucky enough not to catch any. :)

    We filleted them and smoked/canned the majority. Tasty stuff and I'm really glad that we went after a two-year hiatus (work-related).

    I love Reds, my favorite salmon. And really best caught right out of Salt Water. My favorite Salmon fishing trips was with a friend that lived in Homer. We would take his boat out to English bay when the Reds were in there. I have eaten Pinks caught in Homer Bay. Not in a league with Reds, Silvers and Kings.

    Was it combat fishing or not so crowded?

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524
    edited August 2

    @gagrice said: Was it combat fishing or not so crowded?

    Hahahahaha; your memory serves you well, Gary! In this case, I would call it "exceptionally busy," especially for week days (I always make a point to do my fishing during the week to avoid the weekend crowds). I wouldn't call it "combat" fishing, though, as everyone in my general vicinity were very considerate of one another. We recognize that we're all in it together and that there is plenty of room in the water for all the nets. So, all in all, a pleasant experience.

    Funny enough, I found out this year that I am somewhat of a celebrity down there because of my 1984 Honda ATC250 (Big Red three-wheeler). It was quite the conversation starter. In addition, "regulars" were wondering what happened to us the last couple years because we went down for ten years straight before our hiatus.

    Of obtainable salmon, my favorite is red when processing or silver when fresh. Kings are fantastic both fresh and frozen, but they are such a rare commodity that I tend to not even put them on my list of mentionables. :p

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,035
    edited August 2

    @xwesx said:

    My last Alaska salmon fishing trip was to Willow Creek in about 1991. It was crazy. Is your dipnet by permit only?

  • grahampetersgrahampeters AustraliaPosts: 1,616

    G'day

    @xwesx said: Funny enough, I found out this year that I am somewhat of a celebrity down there because of my 1984 Honda ATC250 (Big Red three-wheeler)

    I remember those. I can confirm that they float. Unfortunately my farmer cousin can confirm that they float upside down (not a happy discovery when the engine is running and it got away into a dam).

    I am fascinated by the size of that dip-net. How do you lift a thing that size with a Salmon in it. We do not fish with anything like that here.

    Also intrigued by the donut tyres on the trailer. Are they peculiarly Alaskan or commonplace in the USA? Here in Australia, we typically use a 6' * 4' box trailer with drop rear and front panels with the wheels (normal car size) sitting outside the box area and mounted on a solid axle with leaf springs. Load height is about the same.

    Looks like a really fun trip. It is good that you have supervision by a kid and a dog; always the best fishing trips.

    Cheers

    Graham

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524

    Gary: It is by permit and limited to residents only. For "southcentral" fisheries (includes Kasilof and Kenai River mouths, as well as Fish Creek outside of Wasilla on a rare occasion), the bag limit is 25 fish for "head of household" plus ten fish for each additional household member. In my case, 55. That includes any species except for kings (Chinook), which are typically restricted to one (or fewer) on the Kenai and none for any other location.

    Graham: The nets are limited to 60 inches (~1.5 meters) across the largest portion of the opening (or diameter if circular) with a "bag depth" of no more than the same. We generally use a gill net with a 4" mesh. People make them out of all sorts of stuff including pvc, rigid copper pipe, you name it...

    But, the trick, really, is to have a net that is durable, relatively lightweight, and comfortable to both hold and maneuver. I have two rectangular nets (the ones with the long handles that protrude off the back of the car's roof) that are made out of steel pipe and a 52" circular one that is made of aluminum. My preferred net is the circular one because it has a longer handle (10'/3m w/ a 6'/1.8m extension, so I don't need to stand as deep in the water) and does not tend to snag up the net nearly as often, but I have pulled many a fish out of the river with all of them.

    When catching a fish, you simply pull the net backward to the shore - no need to lift it out of the water. When I do need to pull it from the water to reposition, etc., I pull the handle back to a comfortable mid-point, lift it overhead, and go from there. Perhaps the craziest part of the whole thing is to put this tiny net (when compared to the size of the river) into a river and stand there expecting a fish to simply swim into it. It works, but I always have to perform sanity checks after standing there for two, sometimes three, hours with nothing but impending hypothermia to show for it.... :p

    Here's my setup when I head down to the beach:

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524

    @grahampeters said: Also intrigued by the donut tyres on the trailer. Are they peculiarly Alaskan or commonplace in the USA? Here in Australia, we typically use a 6' * 4' box trailer with drop rear and front panels with the wheels (normal car size) sitting outside the box area and mounted on a solid axle with leaf springs. Load height is about the same.

    Oh, and we also have the trailers similar to what you described. They are quite commonplace here and are known as "utility trailers." I would estimate the 6'x12' box size as the most common. Mine is often known as a "snowmobile trailer." It has an 8' x 8' bed designed to hold two snow machines side by side. It has a full tilt bed (which is quite scary to use) that works well for loading one machine, but is impossibly difficult to use when loading more than one. I generally just roll my machine and trailer up to it and lift them onto the bed by hand since it only sits about 12" above the ground.

    The tire size is 18.5X8.5-8 (215/60-8 is appx the same), load range C (1760# max load @ 50 psi (3.45 bars)) and are designed for highway use, but they are sized in that way to fit under the trailer and in-line with the vehicle tires so that they pull more easily through snow. I'm not sure how well they work, though, because they have just enough of a "v" shape to the bearing surface that they dig down into sand like nobody's business! I had to deflate them to 15 psi before they would ride up on the sand and not bog my car (or three-wheeler) down.

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,363

    That's pretty much how I get my fish... except for the part where I drive to Kroger.

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  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,035

    @xwesx said: Gary: It is by permit and limited to residents only.

    I thought that was how it worked. Are they bought and sold or by drawing? I have friends from Delta that do the fish wheel thing also. She is Eskimo from Kaktovik so not sure how that works. I know her and her husband can and smoke a LOT of salmon every year on Subsistence permit.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524
    edited August 4

    @gagrice said: Are they bought and sold or by drawing?

    Dipnetting is considered "personal use." From a state lingo perspective, it is somewhere between sport fishing and subsistence. Personal use fishing requires a resident fishing license ($26.00 annually) and a permit, but the P.U. permit does not cost anything. So, anyone who is a resident head-of-household with a fishing license can get a permit once per year.

    I am not well-educated on the subsistence fishery, but a significant limitation is the location of one's primary residence. The catch restrictions are much more liberal for subsistence.

    That sorta plays into kyfdx's note above ("except for the part where I drive to Kroger."). In some areas, that isn't a feasible option. For me, I just choose to not do that. At around $6-$7 a pound for "fresh" red salmon, I can spend a reasonable amount on this fishing trip and come out ahead. I figure I spent around $400 on the trip, which is nearly all fixed cost. So, my first fish costs me about $100 per pound. But, at 45 fish, I spent about $2.25 per pound on my catch and 100% of the meat will go to use. It's a gamble, though. If the catch is bad, I could spend more than the local supermarket (not to mention the time invested). From strictly a dollar standpoint, I would be better off going to the local store at anything under around seventeen fish.

    That said, if I spent 32 hours in the water and caught only 17 fish, I would be hard-pressed to repeat that experience regardless of the economics of it!

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • grahampetersgrahampeters AustraliaPosts: 1,616

    @xwesx said:

    G'day

    One of my fun time-wasters is watching bearcam at Brooks River. Is dipnetting more successful than the average bear? If so, why am I not seeing Brown Bears with your rig?

    Cheers

    Graham

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,990

    They are having tech difficulties this morning, but I'm guessing the Katmai bear cam is the link you use.

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