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Thread: Lake fishing for rainbows in September

  1. #1

    Default Lake fishing for rainbows in September

    I plan to make my way up to a particular lake that has rainbows in it tomorrow, but no salmon run. I have fly fished for steelhead throughout my life, but that's almost the only time I break out the Sage (except grayling).
    I don't even know how to fly-fish a lake very well except to throw out a dry fly. Maybe someone could recommend a few good lake flies for this time of year. I'll have an old-school float tube and some gigantic diving fins.
    Hike faster. I hear banjo music.

  2. #2

    Default Leeches, Zonkers, stuff like that

    I like dark colored leeches, zonkers, and other streamers. The fish should be feeding very good right now in the lakes.

  3. #3
    New member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006

    Default If this helps in AK...for what it is worth...

    I was a enthusiastic pond fisherman in MT prior to moving here 10 years ago. I always did well with subsurface nymphs like the a number 12-16 Copper John, bead head prince, rabbit ear, or soft hackle brown hackle olive. For smaller fish, I have done well with these flies for char and rainbow in lakes on the road towards Tok (?the Glenn?) and near Lake Louise. I have yet to catch big fish in AK on small flies -and buggers probably work better here for the big fish. However, in MT, I have caught many 5# plus fish on these nymphs.

    Sometimes slowly stripping in these nymphs results in hard pike-like hits!

  4. #4
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Eagle River/ Juneau


    this time of the year you need to be fishing on hot days, if its hot and sunny bugs will be hatching and trout will be rising, thats the best because then you can throw dries at em... With wild fish match the hatch with stocked fish throw something that floats and is durable to where you see risers. More likely the weather will be cold and wet and that is where the wooly bugger comes in. If you tie make sure you use dry fly hackle for your lake buggers that way they will displace more water as it come through the water (kinda like a spinner). My favorite colars are peacock and brown, ginger and black, plain olive, and plack all with a conehead or gold bead in about a size 6. I like to troll with a couple or 3 bb splitshot or a type 6 sink tip. At any rate you want your fly close to the bottom, target weed beds, lilly pads and dropoffs. My favorite lake close to anchorage is Long Lake in Kepler Bradley it holds monster fish...

    As for big fish on little flies, not so much in lakes however this pig

    was caught on a sz. 14 prince nymph tied on a 2x short shanked hook
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  5. #5


    I've found lake dragons in black and olive leechs, and buggers in black and olive seem to work the best.

    More so in the spring summer as when summer hit I was done with lakes and trout.

    Also a pearl scud works well. Dont ask I aint telling . Naw, it's easy to do. Find any yarn with a pearl hue to it, cut it up, make dubbing out of it, mix it with some rabbit fur if you like and go. I use the long stringy icicles you by for haning outside at xmas time for the pearl shell back. They are 1/8 to 3/6" wide and you get a LOAD of them. You heat them up and they curl for the icicles. Works well for shell backs and gives it more flash.

    most of the lakes have freshwater shrimp in them, hence that pearl scud.

    I've also found that a unweighted small (size 8 10 or 12) deer hair muddler seems to work very very late in the evening. Use a fairly long leader, and something a bit heavier then 6x tippet, I prefer 10 or 12 pounds...and strip like crazy creating a wake like a injured or scared baitfish....seems to work. Just be aware they very well may HAMMER this thing!

    I also strip the lake dragons pretty fast. They will hit it HARD so dont set the hook, just lift the road gently but firmly or you'll break off every time.

    The typical minnow patterns will work well also, zuddlers for getting deeper, zonkers etc.

    Olive, black and occasionally brown seem to be my best colors for everything if you haven't caught that already .


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