The 2014 Tyee Season is officially open! Once upon a time there were plenty of Tyee hooked in July but these days most rowers don’t start to get serious until they turn the page to August—which is just next week in case you forgot. But we can’t forget about 2005 when Paul Breukers caught the biggest fish of the season on July 29th. But many of the rowers like to go out and work the bugs out before August rolls around so if you enjoy watching the rowboats glide back and forth you will probably seen a few of them on most July evenings.
Meanwhile, weighmaster Bob Goodwin doesn’t have too much to do this time of year outside of chatting with the occasional guide or answering questions for the parade of visitors that wander into the clubhouse.
But once the big fish start getting hooked, Bob’s life switches into high gear and his day runs from first light to last. Every rower wants to have a close encounter with Bob because he is the one who determines whether your fish becomes a registered Tyee or not. When you bring your catch to the beach he is the one the puts the loop around its tail and weighs it, and even if it is over thirty pounds you aren’t in the clear yet. He then measures your rod to make sure that it is between 6 and 9 feet long. If you pass that test, you next must have your line tested. He wraps it around an ancient old pulley contraption and then ties the end to the official weight. He turns the handle and if your line doesn’t snap before the weight comes off the ground, you fail and your fish is disqualified.
If you pass all of these tests you get to ring the bell, once for each ten pounds of fish and Bob puts your official weight up on the big board, usually to a round of applause from those gathered around. Then people buy you a whole bunch of shooters and you have a story for the rest of your life.
Until tomorrow, keep on rowing