Salmon set-netting consists of using a gillnet that is ‘set’ or anchored, one end near the beach and one end further out in the water. Set-netting isn’t just a way to catch salmon, a whole lifestyle revolves around it.
Because set-netting is essentially a land-based operation it is one of the most family friendly forms of commercial fishing. We have a cabin (which just doubled in size from one room to two!) that we spend the summer based out of.
Our fishery is unique because unlike most set-net fisheries we are not governed by the tide. We fish two predictable ‘openers’ per week that are 48 hours each so we fish day and night, picking fish on regular intervals. We go out in a small boat, called a skiff, to work our nets. It generally takes an hour or so for each net and we pick them all regularly so we fish literally all summer long!
We catch generally small quantities of fish, compared to other styles of commercial salmon fishing, and so are able to take care of each fish really well. This also gives us the opportunity to share our lifestyle with you! With Salmon Annie’s you can come right along with us in our skiff and work right alongside us, learning about the parts of the process that interest you the most, including identifying the different species of fish.
Our fishery is also unique — we have regular twice a week 48 hour intervals.
In June we are mostly catching King Salmon, also known as Chinook. King salmon are the largest of the five species of salmon and are a very prized fish. They are high in oil content and very flavorful.
Towards the end of June the Sockeye Salmon, or Reds, start to return as the King Salmon taper off. Red Salmon are aptly named for their bright red, firm flesh. The peak of the Red run is early in July. Throughout July we start to see more and more Chum Salmon, also called Keta or Dogs.
As July comes to an end, in addition to Chums and Reds, we start to catch lots and lots of Pink Salmon. These smaller fish are fun to catch and actually quite tasty, especially when they are super fresh!
August means Silver Salmon season, as the other runs come to an end. Also called Coho Salmon, Silvers are like Kings, a larger, oily fish but with a more mild flavor. They are wonderful for eating fresh (or fresh frozen of course) but especially shine smoked.