From Our Editors
Fisherman Travis Choquette's work begins long before he ever steps foot on a boat. The expert angler, who owns and runs Fish Hunters Guide Service, prepares for every trip weeks in advance. He researches current river conditions and checks records from past fishing seasons, which helps him uncover the hiding spots of salmon, sturgeon, and other species. Finally, he crafts homemade bait that's designed to attract each targeted species like a magnet attracts whatever magnets eat.
All of this work pays off on Mr. Choquette's 25-foot, Alumaweld Columbia Ride Master Vee. Aboard this vessel, he takes small groups out into the Columbia River, where they can go after chinook, coho salmon and steelhead in the summer and fall or winter steelhead in colder months. Or the anglers may target what Mr. Choquette considers the region's most sought-after fish: the spring chinook, a salmon that averages 20 pounds. Groups often find success regardless of what's at the end of the line. Mr. Choquette's online gallery reveals the beaming faces of many anglers, some holding catches that stretch more than half their body lengths.