Bridger Card's Outdoor Wish Fishing Trip

Below is an e-mail I received from the father of our latest Outdoor Wish Kid Bridger Card. With the help of Ed Schlief of Alaska Bowhunting Supply and folks like yourself Benefit4Kids was able to send Bridger and his family on a week long Alaskan fishing trip. Our sincerest thanks to all of you that help us help kids.

Steve Pray, Benefit4Kids

Here is Bridger's Dad's diary of their trip.

What an amazing trip! Ed was fantastic and put together an incredible trip for Bridger. He will never forget this experience and his love for life and the outdoors will be with him forever! I'll give you a run down of how it went and attach some photos. I'll also make some hard copies of pictures and send them to you as soon as possible.

Day one: We flew into Anchorage and Ed met us at the airport with the motor home, We picked up some groceries and then drove down to Portage Glacier to our first camp.

Day two: Ed picked us up at Portage with his boat and we made our way to Whittier by way of a 3 mile long tunnel (an experience in its own right) put the boat in at the marina and headed out to look for Chum Salmon. On the way out to the fishing grounds we came across a pod of Minki whales and enjoyed them and the beautiful scenery. After a 1 hr boat ride, we started to troll for Salmon and it didn't take long before we started to hook up on Chum Salmon and had a great time. In one area we saw about 30 Bald Eagles feeding on salmon all around us. After a few hours of salmon we went to a new area to fish the bottom and we were able to catch many Greenling and a few rockfish. What a great start. We then put the boat back on the trailer and made our way back to camp. The boys had to hike up to a snow cave along the way that was beautiful. We got back in the motor home and drove to Seward where we spent the night next to the ocean.

Day Three: Woke early and walked along the beach and saw our first Sea Otter and watched him play in the ocean for a while then went and found Ed at the marina to start the next day of fishing. Another hour boat ride with amazing scenery and we started to troll for Silver Salmon. We started to pick up fish here and there and Bridger was in heaven. As we trolled near shore, Bridger caught a black Rockfish about 5 lbs and thought he might want to get serious about them in the afternoon. After a few more Silvers and another encounter with a whale, Bridger talked us all into fishing for Rockfish. What a great idea that turned out to be. We moved to a new area and started to jig for Rockfish and caught 5 pounders as fast as we wanted. We also started to drop a big jig to the bottom and started to hook up on large Ling cod. Up to 40 Lbs!!! What an amazing creature. We practiced catch and release for the majority of the afternoon and had a ball on some big fish. After all that we made the long drive to Homer.

Day Four: We woke early and fished the Homer fishing hole on our own and managed to land 6 King salmon of about 15-25 lbs on our own (The big one got away). We then got on the water taxi to Seldovia that took us buy bird Island with many varieties of birds, Sea Lions, Otters, and again some amazing scenery. We got checked into our hotel in Seldovia and then decided to try our hand at some King salmon in Seldovia slough that afternoon. We managed to land 2 about 30 and 35 lbs. They are progressively getting bigger!

Day Five: We Got on the boat with Bill and Bob to fish for Halibut and had a wonderful day of catching one after another of delicious bottom fish. We kept enough to fill a cooler and had a great time doing it. The best part is, none of us got seasick. After cleaning our catch we got back on the "taxi" to Homer and the Motor home and then made our way to Soldotna.

Day Six: 5:30 am we got on the boat with Jon Sheffrey and went after the mighty Keni River Kings. What a great guide he was and we can’t thank him enough for the time he showed us. We caught 7 kings that day including a monster of 48 lbs, 50" long and 27" around (what do we need to do to get a glass mount of this fish?) It was the big fish of the trip and we were all very excited to say the least. This was a morning none of us will ever forget. We drove from there to the Russian River campground and spent the evening fishing for Red salmon. Hooked a few but kind of slow.

Day Seven: Slept in today as I think we are all a little beat but then fished for Reds and a few Rainbows, caught enough to keep it interesting but then we took a hike to the Russian Falls to watch the Salmon leap up the river toward their spawning grounds. What an incredible place Alaska is. We then drove back to Anchorage and met Ed again. I can’t tell you enough how wonderful he was to us the entire trip. This is truly a great man and outdoorsman. We feel we have made a friend for life and would like to send our warmest wishes to him and his wife. Thanks again for all you did for Bridger and our family.

B4K Notes: Bridger's trip was arranged by Ed Schlief of Alaska Bowhunting Supply.
Travel expenses for Bridger and his family were paid for in part by Lee Morrow of QuantumAI.
All other expenses were covered by Benefit4Kids