Silver Salmon Derby


Winning not required We’re idling along on a glassy sea. Somewhere ahead of us water meets sky, but a thin veil of fog renders the horizon indiscernible at times. Behind us, the town of Valdez has revved into the full swing of its 55th annual silver salmon derby.  I’m with my brother Chris aboard the Cape Corona, a vessel of his own handiwork, thanks to the events of 2020. While many of us flocked to the stores to garner toilet paper, Chris procured gallons of fiberglass resin and rolls of the various fabric that comprise the laminate. With months of downtime on his hands, he gutted a 22-foot hull to its bare bones and built what he hopes is the ultimate saltwater fishing machine. With us today is 26-year-old Sarah Minturn, whose dexterity at untangling lines and agility on deck are at once enviable, if not a grim reminder that…