--First Post--First Trip To Alaska--
I am going on my first trip to Alaska July 29-Aug 6. I plan on staying in Anchorage, Cooper Mountain, and Seward while there. I plan on doing a lot of bank fishing and booked one charter in Seward with Profish N Sea for a Hali and Coho Combo.
I have been going through this forum for the past week and got a lot of helpful info. I even bought Alaska Fishing On a Budget but have not received it yet. Based on all the info so far I plan on fishing North of Anchorage for Silvers and The Russian River and Kenai for Sockeye while sticking to the Bay in Seward.
If you have any tips or suggestions for an Alaska newbie please let me know! Yes I will bring bear spray and eye protection!
Consider booking a halibut trip with a charter south of Anchorage, from a Kenai Pen. spot: Seward, Ninilchik, Deep Creek, Homer; you can find those charters easy or if not, post questions here.
It is not too uncommon for all anglers aboard to limit out on 2 halibut per day and the smaller ones (30-40 pounders) make the finest eating and/or the larger ones make much more great eating.
Halibut is the most expensive fish to buy in the store here, and for good reason, its the best fish there is, except for the times that salmon is the best.
The most important thing when you are new to fishing up here is enjoy the scenery. Especially with salmon, sometimes the fishing is great, sometimes there are no fish at all. The best bet is to go on a charter. That is as close to a sure thing as you can get.
Even as an Alaskan that is somewhat experienced, I spend a lot of time staring at the water and the mountains while fishing.
Your timing should be pretty good for the Russian river. Also make sure you check the Alaska Fish and Game Emergency Orders often. Sometimes if the fish are running well, your bag limit increases. Sometimes they close waters if they are not doing well. Don't keep fish if you are not going to eat them. Don't waste our fish!
You might be a little early for silvers in the Matsu Valley. If you can bring a laptop, get on the forum and the AF&G EO's before you make a long drive somewere to fish. Bring a fishing regulation book with you everywere. You can also tell where the fishing might be good by looking at how generous the regulations are on a certain creek. When you are bank fishing, watch the other fisherman on the water for a minute when you first get there. You can learn by their example and blend in a little better.
Also plan a few days of not fishing (site seeing or hiking or something) If the fishing is bad you might want to have an idea of what else there might be to do. There is so much to enjoy in this state.
One more thing (I promise) book your charter early in your visit. The captian and deckhands might give you tips on fishing later in your trip. Shop local for your fishing gear if possible. Small bait shops can usually give you better advise than Fred Meyer or Walmart. Stop by the fish processers too, they have a stake in you catching fish. Just Beware of Fish Processers that also sell retail fish. It is not unheard-of for them to take your nice fish for their small fish.
These might help you a bit:
May catch the silvers that come on in to ship creek. It'll be around that time. Hit the high tides, best bet to stay out of the mud, since the mud can be dangerous if you are not use to it. As you get closer, just keep an eye on the reports. If the silvers are in Ship, save the gas money and stay right in town. I went out on the 7,8,9 of Aug last year at high tide, limited out everday.
Get yourself a few vibrax in # 4 or 5 and you will have a ball.
I just did my first trip to AK last summer. Here are a few things I learned: 1) Fishing equipment is about the same price in AK as everywhere else, if not cheaper so you might as well support the locals. Most places have a huge selection of AK specific gear (colors, sizes etc..). 2) Bring a lot of batteries for your digital camera and a disposable waterproof camera (for the times you don't want to expose the dig camera, missed a lot of rafting pics because of this). 3) Get food/drink at the Moose Tooth Brewery in Anchorage, great pizza and incredible beers. 4) People in Alaska were really very nice, at the end of your trip give away all of your stuff that is a pain to pack or that you may not use in the future: bear spray, bug spray, local flies (don't use flesh flies too much where I'm from). 7) Be careful with the bears, but don't be too paranoid, we ran into a bunch (brown & black) and had no problems.
My only definite plans include a Charter in Seward on August 2nd, and a Kenai Fjords tour August 1st.
I also hope to catch a Russian or Kenai Sockeye. The Sockeye here in OR are small.
I rigged up a heavy rod with 30lb mono and plan on using 25lb leader tied to a 3/8" gap hook with some yarn drifted it over the flats.
Besides that it is all by ear!
Thanks For The Tips!!