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Poor Specs All around! My guidance...
Posted by Brian Richardson on Mar 10 2006
I was cautious to answer your post until a few more details had been wrung out.

Based on this I’d say not a sound (pun intended) game plan at all but positively doable.  Even as a mid teenager I used to take a really good 12’ AVON w/ a crappy 25 HP Johnson and run to the outside of Perry and the likes.  Difference here is I was already to a certain extent quite skilled in big waves and water, familiar with the boat’s limitations through lots of mileage/experience.  I or a buddy needed only modest provisions.  There was not all this tech stuff, plus no definite time line to have to stick to that might have been on a par with poor decision making.

First – I’d really consider a drop off by larger vessel or an air charter… at very least even if no pick up.  This way you see more of what you are getting into, in addition have more contacts or options through someone that is hopefully not a layperson to PWS.

Second – If you choose to go in the 12’er go out on a day trip shake down cruising the Sound without all the hunting baggage and see how the boat does.

Next are the gear list revisions ---

#1 Anybody that says in their post that they are taking a pair of “jeans” for a PWS hunting expedition is just about not creditable of an answer to the inquiry.  Word to the wiser – ‘nough said!

#2 Way too much baggage!!!!  You have to damn near go as a gas scow to go out and back knowing far and away for certain you will not run out!!!  

Two bags of 115 liters and no more!  These can sun across you beam (width) and become a seat or backrest.

Keep the little skiff as simple and lightweight as possible my stripping it of any luxury extras like seats and so on.  

Get rid of the notion to take a hand gun and a shotgun.  Instead bring along only the rifles.  Place big-time emphasis on keeping them protected and waterproofed in padded soft case and a PVC gun bag.  

Food should not be all the MRE stuff – much too heavy & takes up a lot of space… think of supplementing a greater part of the food plan w/ freeze dried. Save the MRE ideas for lunches on the go.  Stove should burn unleaded fuel!

#3  With Today’s equipment and that you will be in a small skiff in potentially bigger waters – I highly recommend leaving the float coat at home and wearing dry suits together with real PFDs (life vests).  There is not a better, more proven mode of safety than wearing this combo.

The scanner alone that you mentioned is not sufficient at all.  If you go the VHF… get a submersible, waterproof, and even floating VHF two way radio for communications.  Take a GPS…  Know how to use it ahead of time, plug in some routes w/ waypoints including safe haven contingencies.

--- So to conclude ---  

Just about all the info I’ve seen related here so far from other posters should not be taken as doom saying.  Look at it constructively, comprehensibly, and critically.  The difference in the part of your post where you say “Whittier maybe Esther” is a major distinction.  My sense of it all is get out there and practice some dressed up with suitable gear in reasonable weather/water conditions before embarking on your hunt.

Best wishes -

Brian Richardson

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