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Strawberry Kokes (again)

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Strawberry Kokes (again)
The weather wasn't good, but wife and I decided to brave the elements at Strawberry. Last visit was 5/12 when we got 4 nice kokes around 3 pounds ea. Today (5/19) got boat in about 8:30a and started on the Soldier Creek side about half way to the narrows. Bad choice, very few fish for the next mile. Wind was calm. Water temp was 42.5F. Used 2 jet divers (with Amish Outfitter releases) and one downrigger. Had 5" dodgers on the divers, one with a squid and the other with a spinner. Downrigger had an 8" flasher with squid about 10" back.

No hits until we got to the narrows, then picked up our smallest koke. Got another on the South shore. Both came on the downrigger so I put the divers up and put out the other downrigger with two rods 7' apart. Orange dodger was on the bottom at 40' and the upper was silver/pink dodger with pink squid. Set both downriggers at 40'. Wind came up about 10:00 and the kokes started to turn on. Wind got stronger out of the West and lots of whitecaps very cold. The kokes really got into it now. Kept us really busy and had a triple once. Landed all three.

Interestingly saw very few fish on the sonar even with the range set to 80'. We limited on kokes by 12:30, but never got a trout. I think they were hanging out in the warmer water near shore.

Just a couple of other boats on the water. One was using a planer board and I think it was "likestrolling". I've met him up there before and he is a fine koke fisherman. It was a good day for us. Just too bad the kokes waited until the wind kicked up.

Going to smoke these in my new smoker and I really don't know what I'm doing there. About a month ago someone posted what looked to me to be a super smoking recipe with a honey glaze. If anyone remembers the post I would sure appreciate knowing the date so I can find it again. Best regards and good fishing to all. Trueblue
image/jpeg IMG_0875.JPG (1.11 MB)
image/jpeg IMG_0879.JPG (1.74 MB)
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Very nice, thanks foe sharing. I'll have our Trophy slipped this weekend, so for the next month I'll be a Koke-a-hollic. This will be our first time really focusing on Kokanee at strawberry. Hopefully our time spent at Flaming Gorge will help us do the right things.
Adding gulp maggots to the recipe this year hoping that helps with a better yield.
(This post was edited by ReelMasta on May 19, 2015, 3:36 PM)
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Re: [ReelMasta] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
I use the white gulp maggots and fill the jar with kokanee scent. If you send me a pm I'll give you more info on location of the school.
(This post was edited by trueblue2 on May 19, 2015, 4:47 PM)
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
try this I don't know if this is the one you saw

Smoked Salmon Step by Step
It is best to always freeze your salmon before smoking as the freezing process breaks down the muscle tissue allowing the fish to brine better.

After the salmon is thawed get your ingredients lined up and ready to go.
Next make your brine, combine all these ingredients in a large bowl. Remember this is a dry brine there is no liquid involved here.
2 cups brown sugar
1/3 cup salt
1 tbsp onion salt
1 tbsp garlic salt
1 tbsp celery salt
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp white pepper
1 tbsp dried hot mustard
1 tbsp dried lemon peel
1 tbsp dill weed
Combine all the ingredients and mix well.

You will need a large container to stack the fish. I use a plastic drawer from an old fridge. First you want to make a layer of brine on the bottom of your container, next place a layer of fish, then a layer of brine... continue stacking. I like to pack the brine as I go.

Stack your fish meat to meat with packed brine inbetween.
Place in the fridge for at least 24 hours. If you leave the fish in the brine longer they will turn into fish candy! I have left in brine up to 36 hours, it is best to try different lengths of time to see what you like best. In 12 hours or so the brine will turn to a liquid so make sure you baste and/or rotate your pieces of fish so they all get the same soaking time.

Your dry brine will soon turn to liquid.
When you are done soaking remove the fish from the brine and place on your smoking racks... DO NOT RINSE! Let stand for an hour or so until the fish becomes tacky. Place in the smoker and smoke.

Fish is ready to remove from the smoker...
Take your fish out before you normally do and place on cookie sheets. It is a good idea to coat the cookie sheets with some kind of non-stick spray before hand. Now generously coat the fish with honey... goop it on real thick!

Try honey, maple suryp or japeleno jelly for a coating.
Place fish in a 325 oven until the edges of the fish start turning dark.
Take fish out and try not to eat it all when it is warm. I have to tell you it is the very best smoked salmon you will ever eat in your life and it is 100% better warm!
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Re: [liketrolling] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Thank you so much". By the way, was that you in Soldier a Creek today?
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Super jealous right now, love them kokes! The are pretty big this year so far! I can't wait to hit soldier creek again this year!
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Thanks for the info on the kokes, it's exciting to here of people catching them already. Just wondering how cold it was up there in the morning when you got there?
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Re: [Fishassassin] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Air temp was 39F when we arrived and warmed very slowly due to the cloud cover. Got really chilly when the wind picked up to 10 - 12 mph. Had some significant whitecaps from 11:00 on, but that seemed to activate the Kokes and we really did well then. Fishing was very slow when the water was calm.
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
If you have a Bradley smoker, I can help you out.

Smile
Bob Hicks, from Utah
I'm 77 years young and going as hard as I can for as long as I can.
“Free men don't ask permission to bear arms.” - Glen Aldrich
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don’t mind.” - Dr. Seuss
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Very simple and my favorite way to smoke salmon.

Brine:
1/2 cup salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 quart water

Increase quantity of brine if needed to cover all fillets. Brine fillets 24 hours in fridge. Lay on smoking rack and sprinkle with fresh coarse cracked pepper.

Smoke with natural furit wood (peach, cherry, apple, apricot) for 2 - 2.5 hours at 185 degrees (that's the temperature my smoker shows, may vary by model).

If needed, finish in your kitchen oven at 185 degrees. It is possible to have too much smoke flavor, that's why I finish in the oven if its not quite done. Don't over cook and dry it. You're not looking for fish jerky, rather just barely done.

I can tell when its done when a few spots of liquid comes to the top of the fillet and turns white.

Hope that helps. Easy and fool proof method to start out with. From there you could try any combo of spices an glazes that you want.
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Re: [WestFork] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
That's almost the same recipe I use to poach our wiper and walleye with, we call it poor man's lobster.

1/4 cup salt
1/4 cup sugar
1 quart water

Bring to a boil and poach fish for 3 minutes

Then use clarified butter seasoned with, fresh ground pepper, garlic salt, onion powder and dill weed.

When I'm low on wiper or walleye and only have a precious few fish, I will strip the filets and then boil the head and carcass in the "poor man's lobster".

mmmm I'm getting hungry.

Masta out!
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
My belief is that the waves impart vertical jigging to your offering as the boat moves up and down. In 2 ft. swells, the bait is moving up to 4' vertically in the water column, especially if you fish just behind the ball as I do. The farther behind the ball= less vertical travel.
Some believe the waves refract the light more and turn on the bites. I know that is true for walleye, I don't buy that theory for kokes though.
What do you other koke-o-nuts believe?
" It's all fun and games until someone loses an 'eye'".
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Re: [SBennett] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
I have had wave action stimulate the Kokanee bite over and over again, both at Strawberry and at the Gorge. Same thing for trout in Deercreek. When the waters calm ... no action. Soon as the waves get over a foot or so the fish turn on.

I always thought it was the light refraction, but when the Kokes are at 40' like yesterday it would seem to rule that out. The up and down motion might have something to do with it, although I had a long set back on the downriggers, probably in the range of 40 to 50 feet that would minimize the up/down motion.

I, too, would like to others input on this interesting subject. Trueblue2
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Re: [dubob] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Dubob, my smoker is a Camp Chef Smoker Vault that my son bought me for a Christmas Present. He has an ulterior motive in that he's looking for me to keep him in smoked salmon and I have a lot to learn about that. Any help will be appreciated.
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Re: [SBennett] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
So SB when you say right behind the ball, how far back are you talking about?
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Re: [ReelMasta] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
The deeper the fish the less setback I allow, especially with a lot of boat activity so we don't cross lines. I also do a lot of 'whipping' the bow of the boat back and forth. With short lines during a whip my inside bait slows while my outside baits speeds up, quite drastically with short lines. Then you can quickly decide to increase or decrease your overall speed as you fine tune your process.I will run as short as 5 or 6' behind the ball deeper than 30 fow, especially on the top line if I am stacking. My bottom line will run out about 30' or so but never over 40'.
I think us humans naturally assume the ball is scaring the fish. I believe the ball is actually helping bring in fish more than 50% of the time from either visual stimulation or through vibrations through the water.
Last Saturday my most active line was only 20' behind the ball and most of the time only 20' under the boat.
I can't wait to get back up and experiment some more!
Have fun.
" It's all fun and games until someone loses an 'eye'".
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Re: [SBennett] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Ya you hit this humans perspective right on the nose.

Things that make ya go hmmm.

I usually always run back more than what your stating and never less than 30 back.

Plenty of time to experiment I suppose. Starting this weekend. I am spending the month of June dedicated to figuring out Berry and SC kokes. Then take lessons learned to Flaming Gorge in July.
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
I was on SC today (5/20). Weather was pretty good until about noon - fishing for me was slow. Only managed 1 bow before noon. After noon when the rain came, fishing picked up. Caught 2 kokes abd 4 cutts by 3:00 when I pulled out. Having fun experimenting - it seems different compared to last year.
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Re: [ReelMasta] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Koke fishing at the Gorge is pretty much almost like being in Heaven.
" It's all fun and games until someone loses an 'eye'".
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Beautiful fish. I too am jealous. Thanks also to those who posted the smoking advice/recipes. Good stuff.




I like fishing. A lot. I just wish I could get out more.
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Re: [liketrolling] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Thanks for the recipe buddy, I'm going to give this a try.


"Sunrise is always best on the water."
Todd Hall
Utah Disabled Veterans Fishing Foundation ><((((º>
Director
Anything Wet Fishing Team
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
True Blue, I think that was my buddy you saw up there on Tuesday pulling the planar board. He runs a river type Alumacraft Stryker with a sport jet. He was in that same area and texting me that he saw your boat. He didn't do as well as you. He was too shallow as the day before he did well at 20ft. They've been a little weird so far with the temps being so low, one day they're on top and the next at 40 and pretty scattered. They sure are nice fat fish when you find them though.


"Sunrise is always best on the water."
Todd Hall
Utah Disabled Veterans Fishing Foundation ><((((º>
Director
Anything Wet Fishing Team
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Re: [trueblue2] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Take a few of those Werthers original candy pieces, wrap them in a clean cloth and crush them with a hammer.
Sprinkle some of this crushed candy on your salmon pieces about half an hour before they are finished, for a nice glaze.
Don't use too much as you don't want a hard crust.


>>>> Listen to the voices in your tackle box <<<<
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Re: [SBennett] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
Wondering what size flasher or dodgers you are running with your setback so short?

Leave no man behind...

'Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.'
John Wayne
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Re: [Lundman] Strawberry Kokes (again) In reply to
My goose hunting buddy is Art Pearce, he started up and owns Kokanee Creek Tackle. He builds and ships all his tackle out of Sandy, Utah.
I only use his stuff for all of my koke fishing.
Art also has a line of very high quality walleye crawler harnesses that I use for walleye, wipers, and perch.
His MAD dodger that I use is about 1.5" x 3.25" and has a relief-cut relective sticker on both sides, not just on one side.
Try his stuff once, I think you will really like it.
If you are going to the DAV event let me know and I will lend you one to try.
Have fun.
" It's all fun and games until someone loses an 'eye'".
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