Last year when my buddy Abe and I drifted into the spot known as “Pineapple” by Prince of Wales Island locals, I finished off my peanut butter M&M’s before sending the herring plug into the depths. We proceeded to reel in 30-35-pound king salmon on every pass. It was absolutely absurd. The next time we went out, more peanut butter M&M’s, more king salmon.
This June, when Abe and I went to the outside of Baker Island I had no peanut butter M&M’s, and in the mess of a sloppy, rainy, windy day we caught kings too small to keep, lost kings next to the boat and brought up no halibut worth keeping.
So what did I chew up just before catching the biggest rainbow trout of the trip on a dry fly at Eagle Creek? Peanut butter.
What about during the 30-fish afternoon at the Dolly Hole on the Thorne River? Pea-nut butter.
So it goes: peanut butter shall be had in candy form, or suffer the consequences. This is not just another superstition like avoiding the foul line, the hockey playoff beard, or special game socks. Nor does it validate the consumption of candy in the name of catching fish. This only works when it is meant to catch fish, not to sneak treats.
Anyway, before two friends visiting from California (Danny, Derrick) and I met Abe for our day on the ocean, we purchased a family-sized bag of Reese’s Pieces, and as you read a few weeks ago, slayed salmon, halibut and red snapper.
At the river a few days later, Derrick was having a slow start.
“Get more peanut butter in you.” Derrick listened to Danny’s order and hooked up.
I had already primed my digestive system with a few handfuls of the peanut butter M&M’s we bought once the Reese’s were gone and before you can say, “sugar-induced head-ache” I had my limit of silver salmon.
I urged the latest duo of fresh meat from California Eric and JJ, to keep their spinners off the rocks, work the angles and don’t forget the peanut butter!
When Eric sank hips deep into a muddy creek near Klawock Lake without warning, some might think him a fool for not being more cautious or wearing waders, but his candied peanut butter deprived body probably contributed to his soaking.
JJ, knowing full well the power of the peanut in butter form and as an ingredient in candy, chose to defy it even after being privy to its power. He bought a Butterfinger, but left it in the car alone and untouched at Neck Lake Sunday. He struggled while Eric and I dominated fish for the first hour. It was one of the more ridiculous salmon bonanza’s I’ve had snagging.
When snacks were purchased for Monday’s ocean trip with my buddy Raf of Tranquil Charters, peanut butter was obviously involved. It should then come as no surprise that JJ and his king-sized Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups killed the cohos. I went with the Reese’s Pieces and caught my biggest halibut of the summer as well as my limit of cohos and Eric who walked a fine line by thinking that the peanuts in an extra chocolate Snickers would do the trick got his black bass, halibut and salmon but maybe suffered more than he needed to.
So when asking friends how their fishing in Alaska was, the proper question will not be “How many fish did you catch”, but rather, “How much peanut butter did you eat?”.
Columnist – Manteca Bulletin Manteca, California
website – www.jlundoutdoors.com