Santa Barbara Channel, USA - Emerson M

We had been on the charter boat for almost three hours. It was the summer of 2018. We had been awake since 5:00 am and the time now was 10:00 am. The Captain had told us to put some bait on our hooks and wait at the side rail for him to tell us to drop our lines. There I was, my hook baited up and I was waiting patiently at the side of the boat rail. When all of a sudden, I heard the captain's voice over the PA system “Drop your lines into the water.” As my line sank to the bottom of the Santa Barbara Channel in the Pacific Ocean, I started to think about food. The only food I had eaten that morning was a BLT on the boat. I was starving. Then all of a sudden, my line went slack. I had hit the bottom. I reeled my line up a bit to get rid of the slack. But I still wasn’t really paying attention, my mind was still on food and how hungry I was. But my hunger disappeared when I felt a tug on my line. I started to reel. It was at that moment that I knew I had a fish on my hook. I began to reel faster and harder until soon enough, there it was, my first fish caught in the Pacific Ocean. It was a Red Rockfish. Then, the hunger was back, but not for food but to catch more fish. I went to the bait bucket and put even more bait on my line then the time before, dropped my line, felt a tug, reeled up another fish but this time it was a Lingcod.

Amazing. Just amazing. Again repeated those steps: Bait up, dropdown, wait for tug, reel up. Fish! Again and again. Until we moved to another spot and there were even more fish. Now, obviously, there was the odd time where I didn’t catch any fish when we stopped over a reef. But for me, those were the best times because those were the times that I realized how lucky I was to catch a fish all the other times. That day, I caught 2 Lingcod and 11 Rockfish for a total of 13 fish. That was an amazing day that I will remember forever, I hope to go back again one day to fish there again.

Trinity College School
Alison Elliott
Emerson M