My love for fishing started before I could walk. My parents would bring me on the boat and out into the creek drainages and I loved being out there.
Captain Colby Slanaker
When I was 3 years old I won a youth trout derby, at the age of 6 I placed in the top 30 in our annual king salmon derby. When asked what I wanted to do with my winnings, I told my mother and father "I want a Lund skiff" so we went and found an old Lund with a 25hp evinrude outboard. Within a couple of years I was out on my own catching salmon and halibut.
At the age of 9 I started deck handing on charter boats (mostly with my father). On the days he didn't have a fishing trip, I walked the dock looking to go fishing. If I couldn't find work... well I grabbed my fishing rod and went and fished from the dock. After 6 summers of that, I decided to start my own business. I saved up my money, and at the age of 15 I bought a boat and a salmon trolling permit. This allowed me to go catch fish and sell them to the markets. I trolled salmon every summer until I graduated high school.
Next I jumped into the dive fishery business, which is a winter fishery that stays busy year-round. This opportunity helped me to gain access to a couple of bigger boats and more permits. After years of getting beat up by brutal winter storms and being gone 11 months a year, I decided it wasn't working for my family. I sold my commercial operation and went to get my masters captain license so that I could guide in the summertime.
I kept one salmon permit to be able to lightly fish in the winter with the option of still guiding in the winter time. I was born and raised right here in Ketchikan Alaska. I love every minute of it and don’t plan on going anywhere. I spend a minimum 250 days a year on the water. My extensive experience on the water has honed my knowledge and insight on where the fish are moving and their feeding patterns.