One Last Cast – Chapter 64

One Last Cast
From Alaska Outdoors Radio Magazine
By Evan Swensen
Chapter Sixty-Four
One In a Row

From reading books and writing reports as part of his school studies, John Rosedale got the idea he wanted to come to Alaska. As John talked about Alaska, his father, Miles, conceived an idea for a father-son fishing outing. Miles’s business schedule demanded him to fly monthly from his home in Arcadia, California, to Oregon. These trips accomplished two things that brought about an Alaska fishing excursion. First, it built up miles on his frequent flyer program, resulting in two free Alaska tickets. Next, while on the airline, he read articles and magazine advertisements, which gave him enough information to search for a place to go. He sought a lodge which would be comfortable with a youngster in camp and would assist him and John in having a good time considering their limited ability as fishermen and one that met his budget requirements. As Miles put it, “One that talked the most knowledgeable about fishing and not just bragging about the lodge.”

After reading, letter writing, and telephoning, father and son found the place they were looking for. They found one that seemed to know Alaska and appeared very knowledgeable about fish and fishing in the lodge’s area. Reservations were made.

Through careful planning and a little luck, all arrangements made by their travel agency were correct, their flights were on time, they were recognized and greeted by lodge personnel when they stepped off the plane, their luggage arrived with them, and the lodge itself was as they imagined it would be. Once in camp, it took little time for the city to slip off, wilderness to slip on, cares of business and school to go away, and fishing to begin.

They backed-trolled Glory Hole and drifted Slough Hole for kings, had sockeye doubles on most of the time in the lower one-third of the Fish and Game hole, lost the biggest fish of the trip in Cooks Hole, learned fly-fishing at Mosquito Point, got skunked in Aquarium Hole, and had their best day at Tin Shack Hole.

John landed his first fish in Alaska and his first salmon on a fly rod while fishing just off Mosquito Point. He was assisted by fellow fisherman Grant Petherick from Hasting, New Zealand. His father recorded the event with the camera to show Mom back home and for the benefit of any of John’s doubting school friends.

Father and son agreed that their first trip to Alaska was just one in a row of many yet to come.

Evan, who lives in Anchorage, has 9 children, 25 grandchildren, and 6 great grandchildren. As a pilot, he has logged more than 4,000 hours of flight time in Alaska, in both wheel and float planes. He is a serious recreation hunter and fisherman, equally comfortable casting a flyrod or using bait, or lures. He has been published in many national magazines and is the author of four books.