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Thread: Visiting AK this summer, Would like to Fish.

  1. #1
    Member MICHoutdoors's Avatar
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    Default Visiting AK this summer, Would like to Fish.

    Hello, I am rather new here and am trying to plan a 10 day RV trip through Alaska from July 8th through the 18th. I have reserved my RV and have determined that my I would definitely like to explore Denali (via shuttle bus), Fairbanks, Valdez, Anchorage, The Kenai Penn. and everywhere inbetween. I would really like to do some unguided stream/river/lake fishing for Trout, Doilly Varden, Artic Char and Grayling. Having never been to AK before I dont even know where to start. Alot of the info I have found regarding fishing has to do with the Kenai Penn. and Salmon fishing.. Dont get me wrong, as I would love to fish for salmon on the Kenai, but something about "combat fishing" with 1 million other people elbow to elbow doesnt sound too appealing for a relaxing vacation.. Would it be possible for anyone to give me any info on fishing for Trout, Char, Grayling and Dolly Varden? Rivers, lakes to try? Internet sites to look at? Is it possible to "roadside fish" and do OK? I am just looking for something a bit more peaceful than Fishing the Kenai for salmon perhaps without spending the money to take a fly in type guided charter. Also.. I dont expect anyone to give up their "honey hole" but any suggestions for a New guy traveling to Alaska would be great.

    I appreciate any and all suggestions.
    Thank you.
    Jeff

  2. #2
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    Default Alaska guidebooks...

    There are several of them out there, and the bookstore on this website carries them all. Milepost deals with comprehensive data, Highway Fishing deals with fishing locations and presentations, and the Budget Books deals with all aspects of trip planning and money saving tips.

    For the good planner me, I advise all three...

    http://www.alaskanauthor.com

  3. #3
    Member monello's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MICHoutdoors View Post
    I would definitely like to explore Denali (via shuttle bus), Fairbanks, Valdez, Anchorage, The Kenai Penn. and everywhere in between.
    I appreciate any and all suggestions.
    That looks like a pretty agressive driving schedule for 10 days. In '05 & '06 we spent 2 weeks in a rental rv and never made it off the Kenai peninsula. We fished from Seward to Soldotna. Spent more time fishing and less time behind the wheel. Fished the russian river, quartz creek, resurrection bay, resurrection creek, vagt lake, meridian lake, crescent lake, portage creek, and of course the Kenai river. Caught rainbows, dollies, grayling, reds, pinks, silvers, halibut, yelloweye and dogfish.

    I would eliminate Fairbanks/Valdez first of all, due to the distance. But it's your vacation.

    Make sure you include a halibut charter. Can go out of Deep creek, homer or seward.

    Pinks will be in so go to the town of Hope. They are easy to catch and will take just about any lure or fly.

    Maybe I'll see you up there this summer.

  4. #4
    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    Default Nice Trip

    monello is correct in that traveling 10 days in getting it all in might be some what difficult but then again IMO if your first goal is to see the sites and fishing is a secondary activity you should be able to have a decent trip.

    As an example:

    Soldotna to Fairbanks in an RV will take you a full 10-12 hours depending on traffic.

    Fairbanks to Valdez will take you 6-8 hours again depending on road conditions and how you drive

    Valdez to Anchorage will take you 6-8 hours.

    Fishing Spots in Fairbanks: Chena River look up Chena Hot Springs Rd go to 38 mile park your RV on the banks of the River and let the fun begin Grayling no guide required and lots of fish.

    If your going into D Park for a day of seeing the Park expect to spend a full day 8-10 hours.

    Your Timing is good for fishing the Parks Hwgy system streams Willow and Montana Creek as well as the Gulkana and Klutina on the Richardson Hghwy heading to Valdez.

    Pinks should be getting thick in Valdez as well as just about every stream that has them.

    If you come up to Fairbanks give me a shout if I happen to be free a couple of hours would love to show you the ropes concerning Grayling on the Chena if I am not there one of our shop employees can break it down for you.

    Tight Lines and Best Wishes.

    Blue Moose

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    Default Sight-seeing #1, fishing #2 . . .

    You're getting good advice. . . that is a very ambitious schedule for only 10 days. If it were me, I'd prioritize the sight-seeing and fish as you're able. Fishing is pretty much fishing—here, Michigan, wherever—but you'll never see Alaska's beauty and grandeur anywhere else.

    Enjoy. . .


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    Member garnede's Avatar
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    Your destinations are a little ambitious. I would recomend either leaving from Anchorage and fishing the parks hwy. Then Denali park. Then Denali Hwy to the Richardson Hwy to Valdez. Finaly Take a ferry back to Whittier and end your trip in Anchorage. There are lots of salmon and rainbows in the parks Hwy streams. You can find the grayling on the Denali Hwy. And hit the salt in Valdez or Whittier.

    OR

    Leave from Anchorage and head tp Kenai Pen. and spend the whole trip there. Everything you are looking for can be found on Kenai, except Denali.
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.

    http://wouldieatitagainfoodblog.blogspot.com/

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    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
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    My first trip to Alaska it took just over 2 weeks to do the sightseeing thing with no fishing at all. Luckily I was in Alaska for a month. There is a ton to see and do. My first trip went like this: cross border at Poker Creek, spent an hour in Chicken, stop in TOK, Fairbanks, 4 days in Denali. (take the short bus tour, no need to go all the way), few hours in Anchorage, on to the Kenai peninsula, float trip with Alaksa Troutfitters, 8 days fishing the Kenai, 4 days fishing the Anchor, Halibut trip out of Homer. Drive back home. I was pretty worn out by the end of it all. I would cut back the amiount of travelling as you're only there for 10 days. Maybe Denali, Anchorage, Portage Glacier, Seward, Cooper Landing, Soldotna and Homer.
    This will cut down on your driving time and allow you to get a little relaxation in, after all it's supposed to be a holiday. You will want to return to AK and you can see more places and sites the next time around. Don't try to do it all in one trip, you will miss too much.

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    Check out http://www.dukeoutdoors.com, They just finished a "how to, where to" Roadside fishing video for DIY'ers. might give you some ideas.

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    Member MICHoutdoors's Avatar
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    Default Thanks so much!!

    Many thanks to everyone that responded. I know that some of you mentioned that I have a rather long list of places to visit in only 10 days. I am aware of this. I think I needed to be brought down to earth. I have the "do everything, see everything, fish everywhere" attitude and think I may have needed a reality check. I am 31 yrs old and am taking this trip with my 28 year old brother and my 58 year old mother. 2 years ago my father was tragically killed in a car accident. One of his dreams was to go to alaska, rent and RV, soak in the state and fish along the way. Eventhough he isnt here anymore We figured that we would take the trip to Alaska.. I am sure he will be with us in spirit.
    So all of you that chimed in and gave suggestions, places to fish, books to review... I appreciate that. Now.. I know there are probably better sites for this but if any of you have suggestions on places to see I would glady take all suggestions!!

    Thanks again.
    Jeff

  10. #10

    Default Places to see

    Jeff,

    This state is so stunningly awesome, it won't matter where you are you will have absolute "must see" opportunities!!!

    There are certainly attractions that are good, but no matter what, I don't think you will be disappointed. Here is a list of common (and excellent) sites to see:

    Out of Seward:
    Kenai Fjords out of Seward. Take the 8 hour trip. Seward SeaLife Center. Exit Glacier (a short hike but paved trail).

    Out of Homer:
    Homer Spit, Coastal Center (relatively new, I haven't been there yet, but I suspect it is very nice), Norman Lowel Studios (Anchor Point), Kachemak Bay, Alaska Wild Berry

    Kenai/Soldotna:
    Kenai National Wildlife Refuge visitor center, Visitor centers for Kenai and Soldotna (Les Anderson's world record king salmon is at the Soldotna center), Kenai River, All of Cooper Landing.

    Many cultural venues in Anchorage. Girdwood (must eat at Double Muskie if you like cajun),

    Mat-Su Valley, Independence mine, multitude of streams, Denali (City and Park), Talkeetna (take the drive to the town... much living history)

    Valdez is a good drive, see the pipeline and oil terminal, spectacular scenery

    Fairbanks, Alaskaland, many historical venues.

    If you can swing it, take a fly-out fishing trip, even to the west side of Cook Inlet... It will probably be crowded but seeing this state from the air is indescribable.

    So, that is a good start, others can chime in on more suggestions

  11. #11
    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Heck I live here and planning things goes like this. Plan, plan, plan. study the plan all winter. Review game plan. Call buddies go over plan. Meet buddies at sports bar drink beers talk about the plan and lie about last year. Get plan set in stone with buddies for kings, 1st run reds, trout openings, 2nd run reds, silvers and of course the fall rainbow season. Make 1st trip according to plan. Pull into camp and put plan in fire and burn it. Weather, fishing, fun and friends change everything. I dont care where your fishing weather it is up north for grayling on the kenai for reds or what. If it is a nice day, fish are hitting and life is good, sometimes you just cant pull yourself off the water. Im lucky, my boss knows if I call him on sunday he just laughs and says I know I know see you tuesday. Somtimes you just have to be able to change a bit and adapt. Great state but no need to rush all the time
    Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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    Well here are a few suggestion, if you are going to Valdez check out fishing at the Klutina on the way for Kings and Sockeye. On the way to Denali fish Montanna Creek for Kings , this is a great stream and you can sight fish, make sure you have a good pair of polarized singlasses. My favorite stream is still the Kenai, there are are a few good spot where you can catch fish and stay away from the crowd. PM me if you need more information.

  13. #13

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    I wouln't waste your time fishing up here. There's lots of bugs, lots of bears, and the fishing just isn't that good. Southeast Alaska is way better. Good sunny weather, warm temperatures, and way better scenery. Just my two cents....

  14. #14
    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Default Wow

    I forgot about sunny southeast. I thought southern Cali was dry but southeast alaska is bone dry. I have never needed a raincoat, got wet no bugs, and no people. LOL It is a beautiful place and so much different than the anchorage/kenai/homer/seward/denali/fairbnaks. Southeast is just an amazing rain forest, with great beauty, awesome fishing, and alot of native history. The only thing about SE alaska is your need more time than you do in south central alaska to explore and appreciate all of it. A lot of native heritage and culture there. Just had to throw my 1 1/2 cents in there
    Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default yep...

    Lots of options. Depends on where you are going to be. There are two books on the forum store under the fishing category. One listed below and there is another "Fishing from the Roadside" or similar. Definately a good place for you to start. Tons of info and options.

    http://www.outdoorsdirectory.com/sto...33a0cff036af98
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  16. #16
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default book...

    If you fly fish, get "Flyfishers Guide to Alaska" by Scott Haugen. It is the best book I have bought yet for fishing Alaska. It breaks the state down into sections and tells you the specifics of each place. Maps and directions to boot. Great resource for anyone fishing in Alaska. Equally valuable for spin fisherman as it tells you where to go and how to get there. Very detailed book. It is available on the forum store as well.

    Here is the other one...

    http://www.outdoorsdirectory.com/sto...33a0cff036af98
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  17. #17
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default Scott's book...

    Buy this...

    http://www.outdoorsdirectory.com/sto...33a0cff036af98


    Some info in this book very useful for you....


    "General Run Timing for Road-System Fisheries, The George Parks Highway, The Richardson Highway, The Glenn Highway, The Denali Highway, The Tok Cutoff, The Alaska Highway, The Steese Highway, Chena Hot Springs Road, The Elliott Highway, The Dalton Highway"
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  18. #18
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    Lots of options, your best bet is to hike farther than everyone else. I'd reccomend definately getting a guide for one day just to get the hang of everything. Have a good trip and pull over when you have cars backed up behind you.
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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    Default Visiting AK for fishing

    Just a few suggestions. For one thing I would not waste a day in Danali Park. You will have all the beautiful scenery you want as you travel the hiways. We saw a moose & mt goats which you will see many places. Very seldom will you see The Mt. in the park.There is a lodge just south of Talkeetna if you drive up to there parking lot you a lot of times see The Mt. You will see it as you travel the road north. My husband likes stream fishing. Bird Creek is south of Anchorage. Lot of people fishing when the fish are in but polite. North is Willow, Montana, & Sheep Creek. Also the Little Su. You can fish all from shore. Catch & release trout in Montana but a lot of them. If you want to take your chances there is Ship Creek in Anchorage. Husband never had much luck there. (By the way notice what hooks,etc others are using to catch fish where you are). Also notice the signs where out of state fisherman are not allowed. Some places you can snag the salmon & other places not.
    I don't want to sound like a know-it-all just a few things we have learned.
    Spent the last 2 summers north of Anchorage from WI & traveled around in conv. van other summers. If you find a small bar or Legion or VFW club the natives have info about their area,(husbands favorite source)
    Good luck Happy travels You will find it is too short a time to get everything in.

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    Member Mainah's Avatar
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    Hi Jeff, I am another new member planning my first trip for May/June. Its 13 days and "only" extends from the Kenai Penn up to the Denali Highway and I am having trouble figuring out how I'll do it all. Luckily the only salmon species I have to think about catching are kings; I can't imagine trying to prioritize my fishing time if I was up there in July or August! Anyway, I've bought a few books but this forum is an amazing resource - I have only reviewed the posts back through July 2007 but have learned so much. There are many great people on this board. Good luck planning and hopefully our trips will be all we expect (probably more!)

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