A Fisherman’s Prayer

Posted on February 1, 2012


Salmon on the Funnel by Ben Knight

Another season in Bristol Bay has come and gone. Another year of the tides replacing the time of the clock. Ebb and flow, in and out, breathe, pulse, set, pull, and pick. Elemental strength of nature harnessed within the objects of our harvest. They come in droves and sometimes it seems as if they are driving the tide instead of riding it in to their river of origin.

Each year of fishing in Bristol Bay is sometimes indistinguishable from one year to the next when enough years are stacked on top of one another, yet this is what brings us back year after year. We who participate in this harvest partake of not only a shared experience of the present, but of a pre-historic past. The salmon remind us of how strong we can be when we sometimes forget and I pray that this collective experience will continue far into our futures.

Salmon Amen

A Map of Bristol Bay by Tim Troll

This writing originally appeared in a Trout Unlimited Alaska publication called Alaska Fish Tales, the Winter 2011 issue. The Bristol Bay salmon fishery is the largest wild salmon resource in the world and has been commercially sustainable for over 125 years because of effective management by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. The fishery is threatened by the proposal of a large-scale open-pit sulfide producing mine with low grades of copper, gold, and molybdenum credits. To learn more about the proposed Pebble Mine and take action visit www.SaveBristolBay.org.


Posted in: Fish