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Thread: Gulkana River over Labor Day Weekend

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    Default Gulkana River over Labor Day Weekend

    I am Planning a float trip there from Paxson Lake down to Sourdough over the Labor day weekend. I got a caribou permit to fill and I thought what better way to do it than to plan a float hunting/fishing combo trip with two of my sons. I am anticipating the rainbow fishing should be fairly good since the red salmon will more than likely be spread throughout the river with plenty of spawn and carcasses in the river. I have a fairly good selection of beads and flesh fly patterns. I was wondering if anyone on here has done this float in late August/early September, and if so, what tips do you have on flies I should bring for rainbows, lakers and grayling.

  2. #2
    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    With spinning gear I'd also put single hooks on several Kastmaster lures. We were on a different lake and creek in the area last year and that lure was a steady producer. Just no treble hooks allowed on the Gulkana.

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    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    There are no Bou nor Fishing in or around the Gulkana that time of year! Just keep moving and walk away slowly!

    On a side note you will not have to worry about extreme low water Ugh! You will find the outlet from Paxson will be slime covered or long slow grass and Algae covered. However that being said if you find your-self going over holding Reds stop and fish the East Fork in fact plan on it even thought he Lake Trout fishing has slowed there are ample numbers of Bows available in that portion of the river. Over the years I have found Egg Sucking Bead Leech works well and of course if you like to fish beads and flesh they do produce. For blind or structure fishing I like to Fish Sculpzilla's it seems to out produce just about everything else (IMO) for that type of fishing on that river. When you reach the confluence of the East and Middle Fork take some more time if the Reds are there and fish it a mile up and a half mile down. The rest of the river will show itself like it normally does.

    Enough said! Have fun!!!!

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueMoose View Post
    There are no Bou nor Fishing in or around the Gulkana that time of year! Just keep moving and walk away slowly!

    On a side note you will not have to worry about extreme low water Ugh! You will find the outlet from Paxson will be slime covered or long slow grass and Algae covered. However that being said if you find your-self going over holding Reds stop and fish the East Fork in fact plan on it even thought he Lake Trout fishing has slowed there are ample numbers of Bows available in that portion of the river. Over the years I have found Egg Sucking Bead Leech works well and of course if you like to fish beads and flesh they do produce. For blind or structure fishing I like to Fish Sculpzilla's it seems to out produce just about everything else (IMO) for that type of fishing on that river. When you reach the confluence of the East and Middle Fork take some more time if the Reds are there and fish it a mile up and a half mile down. The rest of the river will show itself like it normally does.

    Enough said! Have fun!!!!
    Thanks for the tips Bluemoose. Your advice is always very helpful. I had almost forgotten the sculpzillas and then after you said that, I remembered one time while on the Gulkana nothing else was producing and my son put on a sculpzilla and he started slaying them. Needless to say it didn't take me long to switch over. I'll have to go pick up some more this week.

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    I was at BPS last night and the young lady I spoke with hadn't heard of the sculpzilla pattern. Of course I hadn't either until I read this thread. It looks like a good streamer to have. Is there a place in Anchorage that sells them?

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    Member DannerAK's Avatar
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    Mossy's fly shop. No need to go anywhere else in the Anchorage area for your fly fishing supplies.
    "The North wind is cold no matter what direction it's blowing"

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    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    Worse case our friends at Alaska Fly Fishing Goods can bring them in. That is where I place my order every year. The gents there always seem to be able to assist when asked. Mossy's as well if I was in Anchorage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushwhack Jack View Post
    I am Planning a float trip there from Paxson Lake down to Sourdough over the Labor day weekend. I got a caribou permit to fill and I thought what better way to do it than to plan a float hunting/fishing combo trip with two of my sons. I am anticipating the rainbow fishing should be fairly good since the red salmon will more than likely be spread throughout the river with plenty of spawn and carcasses in the river. I have a fairly good selection of beads and flesh fly patterns. I was wondering if anyone on here has done this float in late August/early September, and if so, what tips do you have on flies I should bring for rainbows, lakers and grayling.
    How'd it go?

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by KMac View Post
    How'd it go?
    Really good. Got a small caribou. Nothing to brag about but more meat for the freezer. I brought my 9 year old son with me and we saw a really nice shooter at one point along the river but my son didn't take the shot quick enough. So the next day I went ahead and filled tag with a smaller bull. The rainbow and grayling fishing was good. Not as good as I had hoped, but the fishing on the Gulkana is always better than your average river in my opinion. Sculpzillas worked good like Bluemoose said. So did beads, globugs, wool head sculpins, and nymphs. Flesh patterns did not work for me. 90% of the fish were above the Canyon. And the elusive steelhead eluded me. Although my son caught a decent rainbow right at the sourdough take out that was questionable. Thanks to everyone for the advice.

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