Yesterday team Poseidon competed in our first salmon tournament of the year, the SU Open. The SU Open is out of the Port of Racine and ran by Salmon Unlimited of Wisconsin. The tournament was extremely well run, with great weather and cooperative fish (in our case Cohos.) Rules were a 15 fish limit, weigh you top 10 with releasing fish allowed. Going into Saturday we knew while there were Cohos everywhere, it would take a cooler full of Kings to win. Problem is Kings have be relatively scarce. At 4:30AM we left the pierheads after check in, and ran 8 miles SE stopping at 5AM to set lines in 120fow off Kenosha. Almost immediately we were covered up in fish. First bite was a 14# King that ate a Poseidon Bad Apple behind a Green Bikini Dot Spin Dr on a 10-color leadcore. At the same time a Steelie attacked a 2 color board line with a 00 Orange Jensen dodger w/Steelie Stomper Mini Fly. Just as soon as the Steelie was in the net the 8-color Leadcore with a Chartreuse Protroll flasher and Milwaukee Minnow fly starts screaming line. with a 9# Chinook putting up the tussle. Now this was the start we were looking for!! With 3 in the box including two nice Kings by 5:15 we were quite happy.
This frantic pace would continue for hours. Problem was after the first 15 minutes of light only thing biting were Cohos and Steelhead, with the Kings totally absent. Just how good was the fishing, borderline incredible in my opinion. We had boated 19 fish by 8AM. We did our best to try and avoid Cohos, but they were like piranhas attacking what ever we put in the water. In the madness we ended up keeping 12 consisting of 2 Kings, 3 Steelhead and 7 Cohos. Keeping that many Steelhead and Cohos ended up being a costly decision. Problem was now we could only keep 3 more fish and it was only 8AM with the tournament going until 1PM. Odd position to be in. The Cohos and small Steelies continued their all out assault on our spread of Flashers and King flies, but every one was shook off at the back of the boat. The last 3 fish needed to be big. Finally a 9# Steelie smoked the 2 color with the 00 Orange Jensen dodger and Steelie Stomper Mini Fly. We decided to keep him, when compared against 3# Coho he was a nice upgrade. Minutes later our tin can dodger bouncing bottom for Lakers started bobbing and we wrestled a 9# Laker into the boat. He went into the box as well. Now it’s 9:45AM and we can only keep one more. Well the last fish of the day came 15 minutes later at 10AM. A nice 12# King ate a Fishlander Electric Koolaid spoon on a 300ft copper. Amazingly this was our only spoon bite of the day.
So by 10:15 we had our 15 fish, actually we caught 26 fish on 35 bites. Obviously we made a big mistake by keeping too many Coho. Oh well, what a day, it’s hard to complain when you land 26 fish. Flashers and flies were on fire. Best rigs were the 8color and Chartreuse Protroll w/Milwaukee Minnow and the Green Bikini Dot Spin Dr w/Bad Apple on the 10 Color. At the scales we ended up with 64.6#’s of fish for the 10 largest we weighed. This put us in 14th place out of 42 boats. Not enough to finish in the money, but still a strong performance we were happy with. Big fish of the tournament was a 21.5# King, and there were multiple 18#ers as well. All fish looked nice and healthy so we should be in for a great season!