ken culver

Third Annual Outdoor Chic Clique Trip!

Another successful Outdoor Chic Clique trip goes down in history! 2016 was our third trip out with Ken Culver on the Tequila Too in search of Rockfish, Lingcod, and salmon. Each year there are new girls and old girls, girls in their teens and girls in their 50’s, girls from Westport and girls from other states. New friendships are made and old friendships grow stronger. It’s once a year that we get to surround ourselves with other women who are there just to support each other.

Amy Spoon created The Outdoor Chic Clique Facebook group as a place where women can go to feel supported by one another and meet others who share their same passions. We get tips from one another, we share deals and new product information with one another, and most importantly, we create friendships.

Morgan, Amy, Ashley, Kari, Bryanna, and Jamie

5:30AM came early this year and the marina was full of groups of girls with huge smiles on their faces, and large coffees in their hands. There was a lot of pink and a lot of camo and a local fishing company called Fish Cute was very well represented. We bought our derby tickets and got ourselves situated on the boat as we got our first set of instructions of Captain Ken Culver. Off to get rockfish first!

As always, it was a quick and easy limit. The teamwork started right away as we helped each other get fish in the boat and get tangles undone. The deckhands had their work cut out for them today, although I’m sure they don’t complain much with a boat full of fun girls. We hit a few spots to find salmon and before the bait got to the appropriate depths, the deckhands sat back and watched our surprise as salmon started biting. There were a couple coho that were released without harm and quite a few kings that made it to the cooler.

Jessica with her rockfish!

Brittany, Ashley, and Kari with their rockfish!

Amy with her rockfish!

Amy, Bridgette, and Rachel with their rockfish!

Bryanna with her rockfish!

Debbie with her rockfish!

Jessica, Jamie, and Morgan

Brittany Church set the bar high with the first king to the boat which also won the derby for the day (wahoo!):

We moved around when the bite down fished with the current. We headed to areas where we could catch both lingcod and salmon and Ashley Chaudiere was the only one to get all 3 species in the boat:

As always, our crew was nothing less than amazing. The deckhands and even the captain were on board helping fish get in the net, keeping our hooks baited, and keeping us away from the other side of the boat – we seem to magnetically draw ourselves to each other. They worked relentlessly and didn’t just do the job. They took the time to teach us and show us. And even though they laugh at our steelhead hooksets, each year we get better and better. They help us feel fulfilled and accomplished no matter how annoying we might be; they don’t seem to mind.  We are so grateful that Ken has allowed us to take over his boat every year. They get to do this stuff every day, but they make it seem like a special trip for us. They know what it means to us and even though they did the same thing the day before and will do the same thing the next day, they continue to create a fun and exciting environment for us.

Rich teaching Amy how to bait the herring that was going to catch her the big one!

Bonus: A few of the girls (even one all the way from Canada) made a second trip with Kerry Allen with Offshore Northwest to catch some tuna the next day! These girls rock:

 

Here are a few things that a couple girls had to say about our trip:

From Morgan Nicks:

“I am beyond blessed to have gotten to know these talented women over the past few years! Social media definitely has its pros and cons, but it has allowed me connect to this hilarious, smart, adventurous, fun and crazy group of gals! Each of these women support each other and want to see the next succeed. There’s always friendly competition, but with these ladies it is so positive and uplifting! In a world of so much hate and sadness, it is a wonderful feeling being connected…” to so much happiness. I am constantly seeing amazing hunting and fishing posts from these women and I can’t help but get butterflies for them as if I was part of their day ☺️ Life is good in the PNW!

 

From Kari Smith:

“Fishing isn’t just a hobby, it’s a lifestyle. I am so thankful I have so many wonderful ladies to share this adventure with!! From out of state to out of the country, The Outdoor Chic Clique has created bonds that can never be broken!! Thank you ladies for another amazing trip to Westport for bottom fish, ling cod and salmon with Ken Culver on the Tequila Too. Followed up by a second day trip offshore for some killer tuna fishing with Kerry Allen from Offshore Northwest!”


Thank you Amy for continuing to organize this and continuing to support other women! It’s because of you that we grow as anglers, as hunters, and as friends. Thank you to Ken Culver, Joel Krebs and Rich Graham (and we missed you Dan!) for giving us such a fun trip – These are memories that we’ll never forget! Thank you to all the girls that continue to support one another with our passions!

Second Annual Outdoor Chic Clique Ocean Trip

Amy Spoon created this amazing Facebook group called the Outdoor Chic Clique (go join if you’re not already a member) a couple years ago and last year, she organized an all-girls bottom fishing charter on the Tequila Too where 24 of us ventured out into the ocean together and caught species of fish we’d never heard of before. She brought along the crew from Horns and Hooks to film and the episode aired this past spring in Horns and Hooks TV’s second season. She rounded up sponsors and was able to give out fantastic prizes throughout the trip and a grand prize for the biggest fish.

Amy helped build a bond and create new life-long friendships through this trip and our trip this year was even bigger and better. A good mix between new faces, and veterans from the previous year traveled from all over the upper left corner of the US to reunite and make new friends. The trip doesn’t start when the boat leaves the dock, but rather the weeks leading up to the final date. Girls communicated and reached out to find ways to carpool and share houses with complete strangers who have one thing in common: the love of fishing.

Wesport Marina is busy at 5:00 AM as the captains and deckhands prepare for the trips, and the fishermen and women make their final payments, purchase salt water tickets, purchase derby tickets, and try to remember all the items they need to make the venture out into the Pacific Ocean. As we get ready for departure to head out on the Tequila Too, Captain Ken takes a headcount, Amy ensures the camera man is aboard, and the deckhands un-tie us from the dock. The clouds are looking gloomy and the waves are a little bigger than the predicted 2 ft swells as we cross the bar.

We mingle and reminisce on last year’s trip as we ponder what this year will bring. 2 hours out and we finally get to our first destination: Yellow Tail Rockfish. Captain Ken gives 24 ladies the instructions to effectively catch a rockfish and he casually brings up 2 healthy looking rockfish to start off our limit. We hit the rods and with a few tangles and a lot of help from our deckhands (Dan and Joel), we land our limit of rockfish in about an hour.

In addition to the limit of rockfish, we got 2 beautiful Chinook salmon caught during this stop and both successfully landed by Grace Phillips and Morgan Nicks! You can tell by the smiles on these girls’ faces, that this trip was pure happiness!

Captain Ken had a little surprise in store for us. We expected to go ling cod fishing after the rock fish but because of the perfect water conditions and how quickly we caught our rockfish, he was taking us Tuna fishing! Given that the boat was full of live anchovies, I think he had this surprise planned all along :)

2 more hours out into the Pacific, a few naps in between, and we were finally in the area to start finding some Tuna. We took a random drawing to see who would be able to get the jig rods that we were trolling while we found a school of tuna. It took about an hour, but when we hit the first school of fish, we had 2 fish on the jig rods and everyone else ran out to start fishing the live bait. We hooked a couple more before the Tuna moved on and we went back to trolling to find another school.

Couple more schools and 9 Tuna total and we had to start heading back to the coast. Miss Grace Phillips again was able to land the big Tuna and won the prize for the biggest fish of the day – a $125 gift card to Sportsman Warehouse!

The ride back was full of laughter, pictures, giveaways from all the wonderful sponsors, new memories, and the deckhands even showed a few of us how to fillet rockfish; and it’s about 100x harder than they make it look! :)

While most of the girls headed their separate ways back to their homes, a few girls had ANOTHER amazing opportunity to go on an all-girls Tuna trip with Kimber Roberts on Kerry Allen’s boat! She already had a trip planned for the following day and once she found out the all-girls bottom fishing trip was just the day before, she made an all-girls fishing extravaganza and was able to coordinate a boat full of girls to join her in 2 full days of Ocean fishing!


The end of the day is always a bittersweet part of the day. We are sad the day is coming to an end, but we’re all exhausted and ready to get to sleep. We made experiences that we look forward to repeating in another year and we build bonds with women from all ages and walks of life. I have several new friends this year because of this experience and we have been able to build an amazing support group of women not only for fishing, but hunting and your everyday girl issues. We have many girls that don’t get the opportunity to fish regularly, but love the outdoors sports and hunting is their passion. Through the Outdoor Chic Clique and trips like this, we build and incredible bond and a huge pool of resources as we learn, grow, and experience our passion for the outdoors.

Ken Culver from the Tequila Too and his entire crew: Cassie, Dan, and Joel graciously take on this trip each year knowing how much work it can be having a boat filled to max capacity, being filmed while trying to just do your job, and the pressure of fulfilling the expectations of all the girls who look forward to this trip all year. Ken and his crew are patient, efficient, and a pleasure to be around. I haven’t seen many people laugh and smile like them while just doing their job, but they truly make the experience fun and light-hearted. Whatever stresses they have, they are left at the dock and it’s nothing but positive encouragement from the entire crew. They are riddled with questions from our curious minds and Ken always leaves an open door for anyone that wants to come chat during our long travels to our destination. They know the ocean, they know how to catch fish, and they know how to take care of boat full of ladies <3

A huge thanks to Horns and Hooks to join our adventures, try to film the entire event and then to put all of our favorite memories into a TV show that we not only get to share with our friends and family, but a keepsake for us to remember these adventures forever. Brady Palmer was a fantastic camera man this year and somehow managed to be everywhere all at one time and captured the most memorable moments. He made the 4 hour long journey with a boat full of girls not to nap or catch fish WITH us, but to capture these moments FOR us.

The biggest thanks goes to Amy Spoon who somehow finds the time to get this trip planned and makes sure that we get the experience of a lifetime. Her passion and knowledge for fishing is shared with every girl and it’s evident how much she enjoys seeing other women get to have experiences like this. She is a role model and a huge resource to women in both fishing and hunting.

Shout out to all of our amazing sponsors that provided free gear for us to win during our trip!

Girls With Guns: http://www.gwgclothing.com/

They provided each and every girl with a T-Shirt and hat as well as water bottles, headbands, key chains, and stickers to be raffled off during the trip

Badlands: http://www.badlandspacks.com/

They provided bad ass cups to be raffled off that I’m sure I’ll see around at hunting camp this year!

Mountain House: http://www.mountainhouse.com/

They provided trail mix to be raffled off to help keep our hunters nourished and full of energy on all of our outdoors adventures

Gamakatsu: http://www.gamakatsu.com/

They provided shirts, hats, and hooks to keep us fishing with the best quality hook!

Fish Cute: http://fishcute.com/

They provided a gift certificate for a hat and jewelry to be raffled off so that we can still feel girly, while fishing hard

And of course: Tequila Too!! http://tequilatoo.com/

Oh, and the most accomplishing part: unlike last year’s trip which had at least 50% of the group sea-sick, we were vomit free this year!!!