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Thread: Southeast Rainbows?

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    Default Southeast Rainbows?

    I'm planning our 5th trip to Alaska for Summer of 2013. Every time we've done something different - this time it is going to be Southeast Alaska - a new area to explore for us. Here's my question - are there good spots to fish for rainbows in Southeast Alaska? Right now our itinerary is wide open - we like wilderness and doing things on our own, but a guided trip is OK, but we're not into the high dollar all inclusive lodges.

    All help is welcome - thanks in advance!

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Rainbows wouldn't be my target of choice if I were aiming for Southeast (unless you're specifically speaking of steelhead), but they do reside in fishable numbers in some areas. I was just reading this past week about rainbow fishing on Prince of Wales Island, though I don't have any first-hand experience with it.

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    Default Southeast Rainbows?

    There are some. Any drainage with steelhead will have at least a few resident rainbows. Few (if any) places in SE produce the number and size of rainbows seen elsewhere in Alaska.

    We do have lots of coastal cutthroat, however, which are great fun on light tackle. They're found in pretty much every creek, lake, and beaver pond with access to the ocean.

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    Glad I asked - I haven't really heard of any rainbow fishing in SE Alaska - although Steelhead are good too - I didn't mean to exclude them. The cutthroats sound interesting though - I'll have to check that out.

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    Talk to Mike at Coffman Cover Adventures, a DIY kind of trip, they provide cabin, car, meals, etc.. Thinking about taking the wife there in June myself. Been wanting to go for years, just never got around to it. Exploring the many rivers on POW in an SUV full of fly rods sounds like a blast. Very affordable trip with easy logistics as well. Fly into Ketchikan, the quick flight (or ferry) to POW, Mike picks you up and you are set. Many good fishing rivers to choose from, some very close to the cabins. Did two trips in this area for spring steelhead in the last 3 years. Will be making many more trips to SE Alaska. Spectacular opportunity there for fisherman with a sense of adventure.



    Check out the "River Fishing" package...

    http://www.coffmancoveak.com/fishing_adventures.html




    -Dan

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    Quote Originally Posted by torchroadster View Post
    Glad I asked - I haven't really heard of any rainbow fishing in SE Alaska - although Steelhead are good too - I didn't mean to exclude them. The cutthroats sound interesting though - I'll have to check that out.
    If your going to the SE AK steel is what you should be chasing……….if your a trout bum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    Talk to Mike at Coffman Cover Adventures, a DIY kind of trip, they provide cabin, car, meals, etc.. Thinking about taking the wife there in June myself. Been wanting to go for years, just never got around to it. Exploring the many rivers on POW in an SUV full of fly rods sounds like a blast. Very affordable trip with easy logistics as well. Fly into Ketchikan, the quick flight (or ferry) to POW, Mike picks you up and you are set. Many good fishing rivers to choose from, some very close to the cabins. Did two trips in this area for spring steelhead in the last 3 years. Will be making many more trips to SE Alaska. Spectacular opportunity there for fisherman with a sense of adventure.



    Check out the "River Fishing" package...

    http://www.coffmancoveak.com/fishing_adventures.html




    -Dan
    Hi Dan,

    Sounds like you are heading to the Island again. We want to go too and are gearing up (tying) for a trip there to do mostly the river trip idea, steel head, dollies/rainbows if possible. Can you suggest some fly patterns we should tie for those species and maybe salmon that work well on POW?. Any suggestions from anyone would be great! Thanks!
    That country was so hungry even the ravens were packin' a lunch.... HUNGRY I tell ya'!!

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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Sorry man, too new to the area to have a firm opinion. We went in late April early May for steelhead. Took some flies for cutthroat as well, but main focus was on steel. As with any trip to a new area, variety (flies and technique) is my suggestion. Below is what I took on last trip. Might give you some idea. While ignorant to what works, don't work, etc.. my fly box was put together with lots of research and talking to people that know quite a bit about fishing this area. If nothing else, just email Mark or Brad at Alaska Fly Fishing Goods in Juneau. Great fly shop and website is killer. I buy more flies from them than anyone. Top shelf operation they got









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    Thank you, Dan. Mike from the lodge also called me and he suggested cone-head flies in white or almost white, black leeches, olive leeches and wooly buggers (proly in the same colors).

    It was very nice of you to send us the picture. Thank you again! +1 to you sir!
    That country was so hungry even the ravens were packin' a lunch.... HUNGRY I tell ya'!!

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    Charterboat Operator Abel's Avatar
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    There's a number of drainages in the Ketchikan area that are full of rainbows, although no where near teh size you'll find up in Central. I would love to get back on the Naha.

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    There are a few creeks near Petersburg that have rainbows, but as other's said the size was lacking. Biggest I've ever managed was 14". Sea run cutthroat however can be had in much bigger sizes. I've caught plenty of those in the 18-21" range.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

  12. #12

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    Alaska Woodsman -

    Missing from Dans box that was a proven performer in my steelhead box this year was MOAL leech patterns. I lost the one that I bought from Alaska Fly fishing Goods and then promptly tied up a half dozen more myself. White and Pink with heavy cone-heads to get them deep quick seemed to be the ticket as me and my fellow trout addicts hooked the majority of our chromers on them. I also floated the Tikchik River, Nuyakuk River, and Nushagak River this fall and the pink and white conehead MOAL was my terminal tackle of choice the entire time. Caught laketrout, rainbows, grayling, pinks, coho, and what I think might have been a pike - it broke me off before I could see it. Coho love pink but sometimes you gotta get it right in front of them - the heavy cone does the trick. Good luck!

    torchroadster -

    Cutthroat are all over SEAK in fresh water but I've found they are tricky to find and sometimes it is hard to hook up with one without catching a few dollies first. The coastal cutty's are also fun to catch in salt-water, where they are pretty much all summer. They can be really aggressive during outgoing tides in estuary areas where there is deep water or eddies. They seem to like to ambush from below. Anything that looks like a smolt, little herring, or sandlance elicits aggresive strikes- if you get into em thick poppers on top will give a great aerial show! If you search for them in fresh or saltwater be prepared to deal with bears - I live on Chichigof and had encounters with bears nearly every time I went fishing. Usually bring bearspray, but my .44 mag or .300RUM make me feel a little better, especially if it is only me and one other person. Tight lines!

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    Thanks again for all the replies - right now I'm looking at Prince of Wales as a destination, will check out the Coffman Cove link provided as well as the forest service cabins. Seems like a few of the forest service cabins have road or road+short hike access. If anyone knows of a good one I'd appreciate any info that would be helpful!

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