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Thread: SodaBiscuit's Longest Report EVER!!!!!!

  1. #1

    Default SodaBiscuit's Longest Report EVER!!!!!!

    This whole idea of an Alaskan fishing tip began right after my girlfriends bday dinner. I sat in our hotel room and I thought to myself: “I miss fishing for stripers. I want to go to Long Island, and fish Montauk! No, Massachusetts has better striper fishing…no, I want Tuna…I wanna go to S.Cali and fish for Tuna…No No No... Alaska. Yes. I want to catch Pacific Salmon and Halibut in Alaska.”

    My first thoughts of striper fishing were almost knee-jerk reactions. Its what I knew, its what I was comfortable with. However, now that I had been on the road for almost 2 full months without a home, with minimal habits formed, I thought: “Why do I have to wait to make that trip of a lifetime? I met a lot of people who waited 10-20 years to do this, so I thought that I had to do the same. Who says you cant do it when you’re 28 yrs old??”

    After a brief discussion with Rose, we both agreed that we would spend a good 8 weeks in AK. That’s when I joined this forum!! Man do I not regret the decision.

    We arrived on May 25th.

    Our first fishing trip was for trout.
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=31797

    Our second major trip was out of Deep Creek:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=32118

    My next experience was the Lagoon:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=32619

    Next, was the Russian River with BrianM and Meat Purveyor:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ht=sodabiscuit


    PIC 1 - Rose and Lien didnt feel like fishing so they sat around drinking beer cheering on whoever hooked into fish. What a great atmosphere it was. Even though it was only 5am! HA!
    PIC 2 - Can you spot the fish??! How could you miss them!!
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  2. #2
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    Great reports. Glad you had a great time up here.
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  3. #3

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    THE RUSSIAN

    Now that Ive left Alaska, I have to say, from both my perspective (fisherman) and Roses (not so much of a fisherwoman), there is something magical about the Russian. I know the fishing is great, the scenery is spectacular etc. but honestly, there is something more that I cant quite explain.
    Every time I pull into that driveway, and see that pay booth, I feel like it’s my first time there. Not once have I ever felt any sort of negativity at this place. Whenever I remember Alaska, I’ll think of the Russian. Its clear water, plentiful fish, the great people Ive met there and that something…that something I just cant describe. Yes I know there have been some bad people there, bad situations, combat fishing, bears etc. The way I experienced the Russian though, is like having Christmas/new year/birthday for the very first time at the age of 29. (I turned 29 on June 4th before my first Russian Trip) Having BrianM show me how to get away from a crowd helped, but still, some of my best times there were fishing next to complete strangers who became ‘good people’ in a matter a few minutes after good conversation.

    Here are a few pics of us at the Russian and of what we do with our catch!!! SASHIMI!!! Well, we actually made cones with this but you know what I mean.

    In one of the pics, you can see my brother staring at a brown bear and its baby. That bear literally pushed us off of our rock!! Everyone across the river started screaming at us: “ BEAR BEAR!!! GET OUT OF THERE!!” So I freakin’ jumped in the water!! I went neck deep into water!! Luckily my bro jumped right next to me and pulled me up! HAAHAH!!! I was soaked but happy that my face wasn’t eaten.
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  4. #4

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    MORE RUSSIAN

    You can see my bro falling in the water! HA! I dont know if its cause I had a fish on, or someone screamed " BEAR!!!!"
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  5. #5

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    JULY 1st LING TRIP

    On July 1st, we did an amazing charter out of Homer with Capt.Doug from BLAZING REELS charters. He is such a good captain and a really good guy. He made us feel comfortable right off the bat with his good humor and great attitude.

    I don’t think we could have asked for a better day. It was so clear out that we could see the smoke from Augustine and I truly believe that the very few clouds in the sky were there only to embellish the pictures we took. The water was as calm as it could get and we just knew the fishing would be good.

    It took about 2 hours to get into Ling territory, and it did not take long to feel tugs. My brother Phil had a 25lb halibut in the boat about 5 minutes after Doug said: “Drop ‘em”
    5 minutes after that, I sighed so hard, and was so excited to see that shake and movement of my first Ling ever through the clear blue/green water! “YES YES I THINK IT’S A LING!” I couldn’t shut up! I had never caught my own Ling before so this was exciting for me. Doug lifted it out of the water without gaffing it because he wasn’t sure if it was the right size. He measured it with that stick and…HOURRAY! Keeper!
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  6. #6

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    MORE LING TRIP

    After about 50 minutes, Phil and I were the only ones who landed fish. Rose and Lien were getting hits but just weren’t setting the hook properly. So Doug helped them out and a few minutes later, Lien landed her first ling! And it was bigger than both Phils and mine! HAHA! She laughed hard at that one.

    Next, Rose hooks up and she says: “OH MY! Its big!”
    We all laughed and shrugged it off, because, at 200 feet deep, anything feels big!

    But she kept going: “OH CRAP! Seriously! I need help its big”

    So, I put my rod down, and helped her hold her rod up. The whole time I was chuckling though. I was saying to her: “You realize this is one of 4 fish you’re gonna have to reel up??”

    I laughed until I saw her Ling. HOLY #@$% it was BIG!

    Through that clear blue water, we saw this gigantic thing that just dwarfed any other fish we had landed that day, and it was surrounded by those black rockfish. It was as if Rose caught a whole fleet of fish! I had never seen anything like it!! The Ling was the mother ship and those rockfish were battle ships HAHAHAAHHAH!! WOW! Even writing about it now makes me excited!

    It was the first time that morning that we saw Doug take the Gaff out. He did NOT want to miss this fish. So he sinks the gaff in the Ling but says: “I cant bring it up…” So Im getting ready to help him and he’s grunting! LOL. Finally, he gets in on the boat and this thing was so big, it didn’t squirm. It just did these gigantic heavy slow thumps. “BAM BAM BAM” on the boat floor. Of course at this point, we’re like a bunch of kids jumping around a campfire! YEAH YEAH YEAH!!

    Doug says to us; This thing’s gotta weigh close to 60lbs. I couldn’t even lift him!!

    Rose still rubs it in my face a month later.

    The rest of the day was just as fun. Our adrenaline never quit pumping and we just had an amazing day.
    We limited out on Ling, and halibut.

    Next year, July 1st, Im booking with Capt. Doug again.
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  7. #7
    Member coho slayer's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the good reports, the good karma, the sense of camaraderie that is hard to explain to "outsiders." I'm glad you all had such fun, were successful, and had a good trip. You are the kind of tourist that we need to convince to stay, forever, for the good of us all and the sport of fishing.

    Take care, tight lines, and don't let 'em spool ya.

  8. #8

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    PINKS IN VALDEZ

    On July 9-11th, all 4 of us were in Valdez. We wanted to catch some pinks but Lien was the only one who got one. Go figure! I was able to make a King bite in the Lagoon where they normally eat crazy glue, but I cant catch a pink. HA!
    She was so happy though because she told her brother in Toronto that she would catch a salmon! And she did! Tasted awesome on the BBQ 2 hours later!

    As you can see by one of the pics there were no fish around to be caught. That’s why I didn’t get any. None I tell you! NO FISH AROUND!
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  9. #9

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    VALDEZ WITH DAVE

    On the 11th, Phil and I met with DAVEINTHEBUSH. I had contacted Dave a few weeks before because I knew he was the man in Valdez. When I noticed he had an ‘open seat’ post, I jumped on it.
    We headed out around 7am and wanted to go to Montague. The water was a little too choppy so we stayed in closer. Dave told us he knows of a spot that normally produces but that we should try some other spots first. Phil and I agreed. We didn’t care. As long as we were fishing we were happy.
    Dave dropped the anchor and it took me maybe 5 minutes to get a small halibut. Sure, Ill take it!! Next, Phil got this nice yellow eye. I was so happy he got one because I had never seen one before. Man they taste good beer battered!!
    For the next few hours, we were picking up a fish here one there. Things were pretty consistent, but nothing big.
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  10. #10

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    MORE VALDEZ WITH DAVE

    So Dave decides that we’re going to his favorite hole. When I saw this place, I understood why he loved it. Not only for the fishing, but the scenery was spectacular with tiny icebergs floating by. Not only that, but the water was crystal clear and so calm. It was like a mirror out there that day.

    So Dave sets the anchor and we all drop. As we’re dropping, Dave says to make sure our drags are set because they’ve landed some pretty big fish there before. Not 2 minutes after saying that, Dave’s rod bends in two! FISH ON! And wouldn’t you know it…the fish is big enough to take drag!! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
    So all 3 of us are obviously excited now. This is where it gets funny:

    Dave: “Jonathan! Go underneath my seat. There is a little grey box. Open it up”
    Me: “Ok, I got it Dave.”
    Dave: “There is pistol in there with some bullets in another bag”
    Me: “Sure, OK, Pistol...Bull…Wait? What?”
    Dave: “Bring me the gun and the bullets”
    Me: “ Uhhh..Ok”
    Dave: “ Load it”
    Me: “Load who?”
    Dave: “Load the gun!”
    Me: “Dude! Im Canadian!!! I don’t know how to load a gun! Ask me to throw a hockey puck on that gigantic ‘but of yours, sure! I can do that! Hell, I can probably throw that hockey puck at him while chugging some 8% beer! Canadians just don’t know guns”
    Dave: “HAHAH!!! I bet ya if we had a curling stone you’d be handy with that too!!”

    Man did we have a laugh. Anyways, Phil ended up loading the gun, and Dave shot that sucker 2 times to calm him down. We tied him up, and back to the fishing.

    We were still laughing at the previous incident when Dave’s rod bends over AGAIN!!!
    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
    When he finally brought it up to boat, he knew to load the gun himself! LOL
    This time though, the fish was even bigger! Dave shot that sucker I don’t know how many times and it just got angrier and angrier! Anyways, he beat that thing up for a good 15 minutes until finally, it was too tired to fight.

    Of course, now with Dave having caught 150lbs of halibut in 30 minutes, he had to make fun of Phil and I with our 15 lb halibut! No worries, it was an awesome trip.

    Heading back to shore, Dave was kind enough to be a bit of a tour guide. He brought us by that seal/sea lion beach so we can take some pics. That place is LOUD! I couldn’t count the amount of seals/sea lions. Very impressive sights and an all around excellent day.
    Next time I head out with you Dave, Ill have a sling-shot with mini curling stones! HAHA! Thanks for the good times Dave.
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  11. #11

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    ILLIAMNA

    That night, still on the 11th, Phil and I drove back to Anchorage. We were so tired though so we stopped to take a nap on the side of the road. We had to get back by 1pm though because we already had another trip planned with yet another forum member.
    AK_MOOSE_HUNTER posted in the open seats a few weeks back about him FLYING to the Russian on weeknights. I told him that I would be willing to join him. However, after a few back and forth emails, we decided to plan a trip to Illiamna for some reds. I knew about Illiamna because BrianM and raved about it. He showed me a few pics and we tried to set up a trip there but the man is now a father, so it was a little difficult for him to make the trip this summer. Next summer though Brian! Next summer!

    So AK_MOOSE_HUNTER (Also a Brian), Phil and myself organized a day trip there.
    I wish I were poetic enough to describe how beautiful the flight was. Unfortunately, the words that pop into my head are: “HOLY ****ING **** ITS SO ****ING BEATIFUL! I CANT ****ING BELIEVE THIS ****!!”
    HAHAHAH
    Seriously though, It makes your 'country' , in all its grandeur and all its wilderness, seem a bit smaller, when you look out one window and see the Little Su, then look out the other, and see Ship Creek.
    The most impressive thing about the flight was the amount of detail you can see. Its just close enough to the ground that you can really see the details in the streams and rivers, or the change in the trees and vegetation.
    When I was heading to Valdez a few days before, I found myself staring at the silting water, pouring into a tiny pool formed by all the melted water. I remember thinking that this kind of beauty can only be witnessed when you pay attention to smaller details. But, when I was on the flight, I saw the exact same thing, but instead of a 2 inch stream it was a 4-5 mile river pouring into the cook inlet! Just beautiful, really.
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  12. #12

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    2 ILLIAMNA PICS FROM THE FLIGHT\

    next is the fishing!
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  13. #13

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    REds in Illiamna

    When we arrived in Illiamna, as we were walking to the river, Brian asked if we ever play any little competitive games while fishing. Phil and I said ‘sure’. So here were our rules:
    First fish = $1
    Biggest fish = $1
    First to limit out = $1
    So the games began! I noticed our walking pace picked up a bit after we set the rules!
    When we finally saw the stream, there were fish EVERYWHERE! The river was packed with their blue backs everywhere. Stringers full of fish, carcasses flying through the air…It was quite a sight.
    So Brian spots a pool full of fish and says: “SHOTGUN! My pool!”
    Darn…I better hurry up! Within 2 minutes (or less) All three of us had screamed: “FISH ON”
    But guess what? I was the first to land! WOOHOO!!
    I must say though, these fish are HUGE. And the current is STRONG! I was so under prepared for this that my first fish actually broke my rod on its first run! No joke! You can see it in the picture.
    He was a big boy. If I had to guess it was at least 11-12lbs if not more. I was used to the 7lbs at the Russian! Luckily I brought an ugly stick back up! Alaskan Author warned me!!

    So we fish for a while with many many hooks up and many many lost fish. I was actually throwing back the 7-8 lbs fish in hopes for more over 10lbs but that was silly because Brian came up to us after 3-4 hours and said we had to leave in order to avoid a storm that seemed to be heading our way.
    No worries.
    Our plan was that Brian would prepare the plane, I would fillet the fish, and Phil would…well… FISH! Lucky guy!
    However, after 1 cast, he landed a fish! So I said; “Maybe you should stop fishing or else Ill never stop filleting and we’ll never leave!”
    We both laughed because we both knew it was true!
    What a dilemma! I love it. Too many fish too clean! HA! We ended up with 7 fish between us. No limits but such an amazing time.

    Well, our trip back was snag free. We had a good flight home and a great time with Brian.

    Brian, next year we’re doing the Nush for a day!! Great meeting with you!
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  14. #14

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    EXTENDED TRIP

    Well, afer that trip, I actually convinced my brother Phil to stay an extra week. (Thats a pic of phil extending his trip online)

    We were tired so we took a few days off to rest in Anchorage. Then this happens:

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=34883

    Thanks for this info Doc.

    “Pack your bags Phil, we’re going fishing!”

    Within a day of the Doc’s original post (thanks doc), Phil and I were gonna head down to Centennial Park for some big Kenai Reds. Phil got his limit within a few hours, and right at that moment, his extended trip was worthwhile.

    THE END

    I am now back in Vancouver. Ive got a freezer full of fish, and mind full of great memories. I am in almost the exact same position I was the last time I was here, but I feel like my mind and my soul are a lot more at ease. Its really funny how a ‘fishing’ trip can change that.
    Ive met some great people in your ‘country’. Some that I feel I will keep in touch with for a long time, even if seldom, and some that I most likely will never see again. To Chuck, BrianM, Dave, Marc, Brian (moosehunter) and anyone one else Ive met, thanks for taking time to meet up and teach me about your country. I really do appreciate it.
    Whatever person I crossed paths with in Alaska, I feel like it was worthwhile. Not once when I was on the water, did I try to avoid conversation, or try not to look someone in the eyes for a quick ‘nod of the head’ type of Hello. Rose said to me: “When you’re out on the water, its people that are the most familiar, not your car, or your cell phone, or the buildings etc.”

    Since Ive been back, I have this ‘bad’ habit here in Vancouver of saying ‘Howdy’ to complete strangers…I wonder where I got that from? Everyone looks at me like: “Do I know you?”. Well, if we were fishing in Alaska you would not wonder who I am, you’d just say ‘Hello’ right back!
    Well, Ill be back next year to catch more fish, take more pictures and to meet more people. Thanks for letting this tourist enjoy your country.

    All the best!

    Jonathan


    Oh yeah, that last pic? Its Phil's demonstration of where Cabezon/Irish Lords come from.
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    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

  15. #15
    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
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    Nice report Biscuit man!!!
    Maybe next year you can stay into September.
    It's a shame that you didn't catch any pinks in Valdez, but I can see why with all that barren water. She just must have lucked out!!!!

    Once you get away from the big city people still say HI to strangers. It's just the big cities that have become cold and unfriendly.

  16. #16
    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Great report soda man. Like I have said. You made the most of this forum and all the information and friends you met on here. The only thing I can say is next time you go fishing with Dave take your hockey stick. Just crack the halibut in the head with a slap shot and show them how you canucks do it. Great pics and thanks for sharing
    Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

  17. #17
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    Default Fizzled out?

    Hardly.

    You are demonstrative proof why guys like me do what they do.
    You are the same proof why forum regulars do what they do.

    Your effervesence is overwhelming, much like champange in the glass that rolls around and sparkles and bubbles to bespeak exactly what it is.

    Soda, we gave you the bottle.
    Soda, you pulled out the cork.
    Soda, may it ever continue and never go flat...

    Rosenberg/Florida
    "Two decades researching and defining fishing opportunities in the Last Frontier!"


  18. #18
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sodabiscuit12345 View Post
    Next summer though Brian! Next summer!
    Definitely! But before we get to Illiamna, we need to stop at a place that has the best grayling fishing ever.

  19. #19
    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    Definitely! But before we get to Illiamna, we need to stop at a place that has the best grayling fishing ever.

    Oh dear I want in on that one so bad. I do have money too Brian. Hint hint. Gas is nt cheap. Hint hint. I love Grayling hint hint.
    Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

  20. #20
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alaskachuck View Post
    Oh dear I want in on that one so bad. I do have money too Brian. Hint hint. Gas is nt cheap. Hint hint. I love Grayling hint hint.
    On one condition, Chuck. No canned MGD!

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