David...GOTTA' DO IT!
If you are targeting salmon...timing is everything!
I had the distinct pleasure to experience great fishing and even better hospitality at the Alagnak Lodge.
'Want to be a repeat offender (soonerorlater)...maybe next July?!
Check them out at www.alagnaklodge.com and tell Tony I said Howdy and not to eat any yellow snow!
I have hit a lot of web sites, but as you know they paint it up pretty rosy to sell the deals. We are coming a long way with no prior knowledge and would like to be in with a chance of some sport. Any ideas of the best periods for fly fishing and when its not to busy ? I dont fancy the combat stuff. We will arrive in Anchorage and are prepared to travel a reasonable distance(200 miles) to be in the right place. Any advice would be greatly appreciated on areas and prospects of using long rods in the truly Scottish style.
Having lived in Alaska for 26 years and chased steelhead for most of my life all 50+ years:
I spent 13 years living in Ketchikan and loved it.
I would highly recommend Price of Wales Island,
If I were you I would contact the FIREWEED LODGER (http://www.fireweedlodge.com/) or BOARDWALK LODGE (. http://www.boardwalklodge.com/).
These are two very good places to start.
If you would like I will try to locate the Right Reverence Steelhead of Joe Oliver and pass your info on to them.
Steelhead Run in the months of April and May,
The Streams to target are the Thorn, Eagle,Logjam, Staney and Klawock.
These are all-accessible from the road and offer excellent fishing.
You have a lot action from Dolly Varden and Sea Run cutthroats at this time of the year all so.
Just bring a trout and 8or 9 (of course I prefer speyrods 6 or 7 weigh and a 14 for a 9.
Floating lines and sink tips, there is not a lot of trypical steelhead water there but lots of fish.
Much of the fishing is done with indicators and glowbugs.
Glowbugs match the hatch every thing from bight Orange to pale Cream in color about size 4 Tied Teimco 105.
Eggsucking leaches and number of other standard patterns,
I suggest the larges size would be 2/0 for the leaches.
Keep you trout flies to Elvin patters and small baith fish type.
A small amount of dries will help also.
If you need more lest me know
David If it was me I would look in the flying into King Salmon from anchorage they have dailey flights between these two cities.. In king salmon you can catch a float plane into Illiamna and fish for large rainbow trout up to 18 lbs. and fish that average 4-8 lbs. If you choose to stay in King Salmon the Naknek river is right at your door step and is very suitable for the long rod. The naknek is very famous for large rainbow trout. You can hire a guide there or even rent your own boat. September is the time to go. Here are a couple of operations for you to look at. one is a full service fly out lodge, the other is one you can rent boats or get a guide or take fly outs if you want. www.rapidscamplodge.com or www.beartraillodge.com
Here is a large rainbow trout caught on a Illiamna area River.
I have made two trips to Alaska and, although centainly not an expert, wll offer this advise. Alaska weather is unpredicatable so make sure you bring a good (breathable) raincoat with a hood. Needless to say waders and shoes.
Because of the unpredictable weather, it is best not to have to depend on bush planes to get to the fishing. They (bush planes) are nice in that they provide the opportunity to cover more area and be able to find the fish, but if they can't fly you want to have alternatives other than sitting aroud the lodge waiting for the weather to clear. I would not recommend a float trip because you have to cover a certain amount of water in a pre-determined time in order to rendezvous with the plane to fly you out. There are some outfits in southeast Alaska doing "mother ship" trips that could be interesting. I also would prefere not to go too far (50 river miles max) inland. The fish are fresher closer to the sea.
Timing is everything so you need to know about the runs in the area you plan to fish. Most of the lodges can provide this information. On the Alagnac (Bristol Bay area) the Kings start showing up in mid June and continue thru July. Chum salmon follow and by mid July are running pretty good. Sockeye come in along with the Chums and are great sport when you can locate them. Coho's arrive in August/September and are highly sought after beacause of their highly acrobatic style of fighting. Humpies run ever other year ( even numbers I think) on the Alagnaak. The Rainbows are there all the time however, when the Salmon are really thick in the river, the Rianbows get pushed out. If you want to target the big rainbows, go in Sept or Oct. The trade off is the Salmon will all be dead or dying, but the bows will be big and fat, having gorged on roe and decaying salmon all ssummer long.
There are a lot of good books on fly fishing Alaska. Do your home work before going. Decide which species you want to target, study their habits and go from there. Many times you will luck out and have oopportunities at multiple species. Usually, long casts are not required and I'm not sure the fly makes all that much difference either, with the exception of pink. And, in the case of late season Rainbows, you will need glo bugs, flesh flies, egg sucking leeches and deer hair mice. Presentation, I think, is the key. Bring lines with interchangeable tips.
You can do Alaska in high style or you can rough it. Lots of opportunities still available. What ever turns you on.
haven't fished Alaska , but my brothers have been many times. Check the area you plan to fish about regulations on personal protection devices. A respectable guide service can help you with this. It's my understanding that one of the biggest dangers is not bears, but moose, especially cows with calves that come to the water to drink...stay away...they can be unpredictalbe. It may be best to contract a guide service as they are regulated by the state and have are trained to handle any tense situation that may come craching through the underbrush. Be safe, be aware...tight lines!!!!!!
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