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Thread: AK Fishing Newbie

  1. #1
    Member BigLew's Avatar
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    Question AK Fishing Newbie

    The only fishing I have done is freshwater in Texas - bass, catfish, and bluegill. I just use the cheap gear, spinning and spin-casting reels and my girls use their little pink Barbie fishing rods. I've even caught decent sized cats on those tiny pink rods We have caught a lot of fish and I've never had the need to buy the more expensive stuff.

    My wife and girls (4 and 7) and I are RVing through AK for the first time this summer (July) and I need to study up on AK fishing, which is totally different. Can you all recommend a good resource for me to learn the basics - like what kind of gear and bait/lures for what types of fish, and what types of fish to expect in certain areas? I plan on fishing as much as I can, but I'm not looking for trophies or a large catch - just enough for dinner most nights for 4 people.

    I'd like to catch a salmon, trout, and grayling since I have never fished for those. I do have a 1/2 day halibut charter our of homer already scheduled, but I will be fishing at different spots along the highway or at campgrounds, whenever we get a chance.

    Our RV rental place has fishing gear they'll let us use for a small fee. I'm not sure if that is adequate or not or if cheap stuff doesn't do well with the bigger fish in AK. I have never done fly fishing, but I'm considering getting a fly rod and learning in the next couple of months.

    Our tour is something like this:
    Anchorage -> Lake Louise -> Delta Junction -> Fairbanks -> Denali -> Talkeetna/Montana Creek -> Anchorage -> Portage -> Cooper Landing -> Homer -> Seward -> Anchorage

    We'll be stopping at other places in between.

    So, I was looking for an educational resource that could give me enough info about fishing not too far off the highway system (all bank/shore fishing) and maybe some shore fishing in Homer and Seward (or some spots in-between). I can't hike too far out because of the kids.

    I found these books:
    http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/a...emires&cPath=5
    http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/a...novsky&cPath=5
    http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/a...dersen&cPath=5

    Got any preferences or other recommendations?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    The Highway angler is a must have book. You cant make that trip with out spending a day or to fishing the kenai for reds since you will be there in july. I wouldn't waste your time fishing kings. Pick up a couple 8'6 bait casters spool them with 30lb mono, stock up on weights and 2/0 hooks and a bag of yarn and start flossing. It may benefit you to hire a guide if you have never sockeye fished. There is a definite knack and pattern and if you don't have it down just right you might be surrounded by guys catching fish and not hook one legal fish. I have seen it happen plenty of times.
    For fly rods rig up a 5 or 6# with a floating line and stock up on flies and beads when you get here. OR a 8-10 weight if you want to fish sockeye with it.
    For the kids you should go down to the end of the homer spit at lands end and cast a large (3-4) ounce sinker with a 3/0-4/0 hook with a chunk of herring. prop the rod up and let it sit. Get it out as far as you can. Fish by the poles in the water and you will keep busy catching pollock and cod. They are full of worms there though so don't expect to get a good fish fry out of it. good luck and have a great trip. If you have another questions feel free to shoot me a pm.

  3. #3
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    You might also consider some of the Road and Recreation Maps we carry in the store. They cover the entire Kenai Peninsula, Southcentral Alaska, the Anchorage Bowl and the Parks Highway. Lots of fishing information on those maps.

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  4. #4
    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by live4chrome View Post
    The Highway angler is a must have book. You cant make that trip with out spending a day or to fishing the kenai for reds since you will be there in july. I wouldn't waste your time fishing kings. Pick up a couple 8'6 bait casters spool them with 30lb mono, stock up on weights and 2/0 hooks and a bag of yarn and start flossing. It may benefit you to hire a guide if you have never sockeye fished. There is a definite knack and pattern and if you don't have it down just right you might be surrounded by guys catching fish and not hook one legal fish. I have seen it happen plenty of times.
    For fly rods rig up a 5 or 6# with a floating line and stock up on flies and beads when you get here. OR a 8-10 weight if you want to fish sockeye with it.
    For the kids you should go down to the end of the homer spit at lands end and cast a large (3-4) ounce sinker with a 3/0-4/0 hook with a chunk of herring. prop the rod up and let it sit. Get it out as far as you can. Fish by the poles in the water and you will keep busy catching pollock and cod. They are full of worms there though so don't expect to get a good fish fry out of it. good luck and have a great trip. If you have another questions feel free to shoot me a pm.
    ditto on the homer spit fishery. Try octopus or squid for bait; a little pricey, but won't come off the hook. Hookups are almost guaranteed.

  5. #5
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    The "Barbie" rods will work for grayling. You shouldn't have any trouble finding some between Lake Louise and Delta Junction. Use the smallest spinners you can find. For a new b fishing the Kenai (for reds, rainbows & dollies) the best advice is to hire a guide. It will save you countless hours of frustration. Most RV fishing equipment rentals are a mis-mash of rods suitable for silver/red fishing. Catching a grayling or trout on one will be akin to fishing bluegills with tackle meant for saltwater. Get a copy of "The Highway Angler". Get it now so you have plenty of time to look it over and compare its recommendations with your trip timing.

  6. #6
    Member shimano 33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by live4chrome View Post
    They are full of worms there though so don't expect to get a good fish fry out of it.
    So fish with worms has to do with their relation to location? Depth difference? Food source? Just curious..

  7. #7
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    Im not sure honestly. It may have to do with the fact they are eating the refuse from the processing plant there. That said every pollock or cod I have kept or caught near k-bay has been loaded with them. You can see the worms in many of them with out even cleaning them.

  8. #8
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    Send me a pm when you get to Kenai and I'll show you how to flip for reds if they are in. Free fishing from the bank too.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9
    Member BigLew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    The "Barbie" rods will work for grayling. You shouldn't have any trouble finding some between Lake Louise and Delta Junction. Use the smallest spinners you can find. For a new b fishing the Kenai (for reds, rainbows & dollies) the best advice is to hire a guide. It will save you countless hours of frustration. Most RV fishing equipment rentals are a mis-mash of rods suitable for silver/red fishing. Catching a grayling or trout on one will be akin to fishing bluegills with tackle meant for saltwater. Get a copy of "The Highway Angler". Get it now so you have plenty of time to look it over and compare its recommendations with your trip timing.
    Thanks for the advice. Just ordered the Highway Angler.

  10. #10
    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Whatever you use for bass will likely be suitable for the 4 non chinook salmon. Rods in the 8-15# to 10-20# rating, 7' or better. Some of the tackle will also work well for silvers and chums. The jigs, spinners and crankbaits all have their place.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by willphish4food View Post
    Whatever you use for bass will likely be suitable for the 4 non chinook salmon. Rods in the 8-15# to 10-20# rating, 7' or better. Some of the tackle will also work well for silvers and chums. The jigs, spinners and crankbaits all have their place.
    True. I used some of my bass lures for pike.

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