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Thread: Favorite river to fish for Kings

  1. #1
    Member akfishfool's Avatar
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    Talking Favorite river to fish for Kings

    Me I like the rush from a gulkana river king they fight well and have just enough water and current to make things interesting. I never fished for kings on the Nush, but the numbers sound like fun. The only other contender for me is a king taken in coastal salt shallow water, waht a fight!

  2. #2
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    I'd love to fish the Nushagak sometiime, but for what I've experienced thus far I prefer saltwater king fishing to any river.

    -Brian

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    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    I have to vote for the Gulkana but I might be a bit biased since that is the only river I have fished kings besides one trip to the Kenai years ago.

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    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    If I weren't working there I love the talachuitna
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  5. #5
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    Default Nushagak but there are others

    Seeing Nushagak Bay from my office window I would definitely put that river first. I know folks have all heard talk of 50 fish days on the Nush but that would be a backbreaker of a day and not sure it's even possible. A buddy and I tallied our best day last year and it was 15 and 12 kings landed in about eight hours of fishing....plus plenty of whiff's etc. And this was backtrolling two guys in my lund, no eggs, no anchor. But the day before we scratched to get 5 a piece. There's lots of water to fish, crowds can be avoided and as long as 3000 fish hit the river that day there's no reason you can't put ten fish on per rod. (imagine the 20,000 fish days.) Unfortunatley there is little for shore fishing for kings and the water is rather muddy (visible depth to two feet tops). Most fish run from 10 to 30 pounds, with little chance of a whopper over 40.

    I've fished several western rivers for everything plus kings but really enjoyed some up on the Kuskokwim. THese tributaries are small and shorefishing is the rule. My first king was on a jig I was fishing for grayling with....that was a blast.

    I've also fished the Kenai and I've gotta say that from a driftboat on a Monday, it's pretty fun. I didn't land anything but a couple huge smacks on my rod and watchin someone land a 60 pounder from a nearby boat was pretty cool. Rugged wilderness it's not, but it's neat in it's own right as well. Not to mention, the weather on the KP is much much nicer than Bristol Bay.

  6. #6

    Thumbs up Favorite King River(s)

    The Aniak River is by far the best I have fished for kings. Nice size and plenty of fish (some exceeded 40 lbs). The scenery is majestic - mountains are readily visible from most sections of the river. Rainbow, char, grayling, sockeye, and chum can be caught at the same time as kings. Very light use.

    Second favorite river for kings is the Talachulitna. The size of the Tal kings will wow just about anyone and the river sees relatively light use.

  7. #7
    Member skybust's Avatar
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    For me any river Im fishing because that means Im not at WORK

  8. #8
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    Default favorite king fishing

    The Kenai in July is fun. I get a kick out of watching all the bumper boats and the look on peoples faces when they get hold of a 40+ pound king for the first time.

    But I have to say I enjoy the Kasilof the most. Either from a driftboat or on the shore. They might not be the biggest fish, but I've had some good number day's. Also love the fact that you don't have to listen to motors all day and night.

  9. #9
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    i don't know what my fav river to "fish" kings is cause i haven't fished all the top rivers out there, but i know for sure that my favorite to "catch" a king in is the Kenai hands down. there's nothing like those big ocean fresh kings in big water and an 8 mph current. i've seen big kings make grown men look like little girls out there - it's amazing.
    sure, there are other rivers that have a handful of big fish as well, but none that can compare to the average size of a Kenai king... there's nothing like a BIG fish on the end of your line; the feeling of knowing that you have absolutely no control as to where that fish goes or what it does... you're completely at the mercy of the king. it's awesome
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    Quote Originally Posted by markw3 View Post
    i don't know what my fav river to "fish" kings is cause i haven't fished all the top rivers out there, but i know for sure that my favorite to "catch" a king in is the Kenai hands down. there's nothing like those big ocean fresh kings in big water and an 8 mph current. i've seen big kings make grown men look like little girls out there - it's amazing.
    sure, there are other rivers that have a handful of big fish as well, but none that can compare to the average size of a Kenai king... there's nothing like a BIG fish on the end of your line; the feeling of knowing that you have absolutely no control as to where that fish goes or what it does... you're completely at the mercy of the king. it's awesome
    Actually, Last year I saw some little girl that fished like grown man LOL .

    I was in a friend's drift boat when this fella with his two early teen daughters in a Willie hooked a whopper, instantly the unhooked gal jumped on the motor, dad grabbed the net and started clearin tackle and they were off to the races. I think that gal circled the boat three times handing the rod over and under stuff to keep with the fish while the other expertly kept the fish out of the main current and away from boats, no cursing, only sheer yells of joy from all three participants. They got the monster right up to the boat and we all got a good look at it's head but then the hook popped out.....they all laughed and hugged and set their lines out once again.....very very cool, made my day.

    Even with the Nush so close, I definitely see the allure of the shot at a 70 plus pound king...maybe someday, I've only got 19 hours in so far...doesn't it take 20 .

  11. #11
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    Default Kenai for me

    Fighting a giant king nothing like it. Kenai river home of the world record.

  12. #12
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    Default one for the kenai king

    I have fished a bunch of the known king salmon rivers in the state. Some are in remote beautiful settings, some have tons of fish, some have some big fish. But for me everyday spent on the kenai, crowds or no crowds, gets my heart pumping. Every pass made, from early May til the bitter end, could result in a new world record. I never tire of the chase. Its a challenge and some days they don't come easy. But when they come I'm gonna be there!! I might also add that if you take the time and effort to learn how to navigate it in may and early june it is possible to seem like you are in a remote setting. We have caught hundreds of kings over the years when no one was looking! The Kenai, because of the sheer size of its Kings, gets my vote. Bigger is better...lol.

  13. #13
    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gotfish? View Post
    I have fished a bunch of the known king salmon rivers in the state. Some are in remote beautiful settings, some have tons of fish, some have some big fish. But for me everyday spent on the kenai, crowds or no crowds, gets my heart pumping. Every pass made, from early May til the bitter end, could result in a new world record. I never tire of the chase. Its a challenge and some days they don't come easy. But when they come I'm gonna be there!!
    Ditto for me!

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  14. #14

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    Imagine, if you will, a river whose waters produce kings to rival the Kenai, where you can fish for days without seeing another fisherman, and where you are allowed to keep three kings per day ....... day, after day, after day. Imagine a hookup on every cast, and fighting so many fish that you finally just sit down on the sand because you're too tired to do anything else. The Kanektok River, above and below the village of Quinhagak, is such a place.

  15. #15
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    Default Ship creek

    and Clear Creek are the only two i have fished for kings in. I hate ship creek...hate might not be a strong enough word. I have a blast on clear creek. The crowds are minimal and the fishing has always been good.

  16. #16
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    2nd vote for Clear Creek!

  17. #17
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    Kenai for big fish; Nushagak for numbers of fish.

  18. #18

    Default Nush

    Nushagak......
    Marc Theiler

  19. #19
    Supporting Member bullbuster's Avatar
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    Default Not my favorite...

    But no one has mentioned the Klutina. I haven't fished it in years and hear it can be a zoo from shore now. It can produce lots of big Kings. My brother & I brought in 22 in one great day. Quite a few over 50 and a couple of 65s.
    Gets a good Red run too.
    Dang, now the memories are flooding in. Hot sunny days, lots of friends and the fish running faster than the beer. We always left a flat bottom & motor at Grumpy's (who always had a unique homemade wine). A buddy would run a small camp trailer down to the beach and when we got in it was fish like hel for a few days.
    Big water, big current and lots of meat rockets. Definitely in my top 5.
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  20. #20
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    My favorite river for kings is the one that I am fishing for kings in on that day...
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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