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Life By the Tides: An Alaskan Fishing Story

David Mattox | Kasilof, Alaska, United States

Setting buoys in preparation for the start of the season.

Alaska can elicit for many the idea of wonder, adventure, risk, and financial reward. And the Discovery Channel has surely done more than its part to bring into our living rooms the many dramas its cameras have followed over the years. For me, these images tell an entirely personal story about fishing. For others it will surely be a different story unfolding before their eyes. And undoubtedly many will even hear the deep narrative voice of Mike Rowe explaining the drama and significance that is captured in their frame.

It is my intention however to tell a much more simple story: a story about humans and the work that they do; a story about how their parents taught them this work, and how they pass it on to their children; and ultimately, a story about how that work connects them to the beaches and the water that it occurs on. This is the Upper Cook Inlet of Alaska. This is the sustainable commercial harvest of wild sockeye salmon.

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