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Thread: Barren Islands

  1. #1

    Default Barren Islands

    I've not made the trip but have wondered what the fishing is like at the Barren Islands. Does anyone here have fishing experience and spent time prospecting around the Barren's sport fishing? Setting aside the cost of fuel, are the fishing grounds worth the effort and time to make the trip?
    Last edited by pontiac-chief-51; 01-26-2010 at 11:24. Reason: typing error

  2. #2
    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    It has good fishing. That's all I know. Weather is rarely good enough to get out there though in most private angler boats.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

  3. #3
    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    Default Love the Barron's

    Big fish,big fish,big fish... Need I say more?
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  4. #4

    Default Weather @ Barren Islands

    If the weather at the Barren's does tank are there anchorages to hide over night for a day or two? What is the "safe" size for a pleasure boat venturing out to fish the Barrens. Are there sports boats that fish the Barrren grounds or, ideally, the purview of charter operators with larger craft.

    There's been a few days when the Barren's stick out beautfully and look close enough to touch, water's flat, weather forecast good, skies clear, and I wonder about making the trip.......but, no. Not, yet.

  5. #5
    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    Default You can forget about hiding in some anchorage cause

    The tides really rip through there. Tony demechelli on the 28 foot sea Otter used to take me there every season. With twin deisels(?) we used to make the trip in @2 hours, give or take. Just keep track of your weather and seas, you should be fine.
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  6. #6
    Member homerdave's Avatar
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    there are safe anchorages in the barrens, but you need to know the area.
    sometimes the fishing is awesome there, sometimes it is a waste of fuel and time.
    knowledge of tides is crucial to success out there, slacks will be unrelated to "book time".
    i would not head out there with anything less than a twin-engined boat in the 28'+ class.
    there is also at least one sea lion rookery that you need to be 5 miles from.
    Alaska Board of Game 2015 tour... "Kicking the can down the road"
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  7. #7
    Member power drifter's Avatar
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    Default Ok

    So when are we going?

  8. #8
    Charterboat Operator
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    pontiac;
    from the Elizabeth/Pearl island area its only 12-14 miles across to the Barons, as most have said, MOST of the time there is some pretty incredible fishing, sometimes it is just fishing. if you can get to the Pearl area, most times the weather is good enough to get all the way to the Barrons. it is a LONG way to go but it is FUN fishing in a different area than you are used to. As most exploratory fisheries, the more time you spend there the better the success rate usually is!

    I still find it amusing to think about how MANY fish we run over to get to the area we THINK the fish are going be
    PB

  9. #9

    Default 2010 Barrens

    When are we going? I suppose when I find a way to stretch the boat to 28' or longer, the weathers good and I can fill the boat with guys who are outdoorsy enough to want go for a long day.

    Currently, my ride is a 2625 like this: Kingfisher,http://travel.webshots.com/photo/139...33928905fnyBkd

    I have canvas dodger over the back, (don't want to get any rain on the fish)....twin 130 Honda's. Is this to small for a day trip in good weather?

    There might not be anyone over there on the the day I want to go. I'd rather hook up with someone else headed that way and tag along with them for the day, make the journey a little safer.

    You guys are right though, if its about catching fish, its not necessary to go that far. There's plenty of halibut inside.

    To me, when your boating around Perl and Elizabeth it feels like your out there on the top of the north Pacific. Just today I was trying to calculate how much fuel I would need to cruise Homer to Seward, stop for an overnight or two and dink around. I'd have to pack extra fuel and I'd want to travel with another boat.

    I used to have a buddy that would be up for some fishing almost any weekend the weather would cooperate. But for the last year of so he spends all his time working, including every weekend, and, as far as I know, he has lost all of his fishing and outdoors interest which used to be his natural tendenciy. Maybe if he reads this he'll realize that piles of money and financial success aren't everything. What say you Power Drifter.

  10. #10

    Default

    While many will say you have to have this huge 30 foot boat, and it is nice for comfort and probably even safety on a lot of days, you really don't as once upon a time the native folks used to run around out there in bidarkas.....And while I just said it, you would not catch my but out there in one. I'm in the 30 foot charter boat.....Those guys in the bidarkas were too brave for me to even comprehend.....

  11. #11
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    I have a friend who's run his C-dory 22 out around the Southern Tip of K-bay, and I presume out to the barrens. He said the fishing can be phenomnal, if the weather is perfect enough to get out there. He also said that the weather turns fast, so as soon as you see things turning, lines up and head back to port.

    Then again, this is the same guy that took his C-dory to Montague from Seward to go deer hunting. It's been a few years since he told me the story but as I recall he said the trip back was sporty. When he finally got his boat tied up and got on the dock, he laid down and kissed the dock. Then he made his way to the bar and drank until it closed.

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    Default Charts And Planning

    As I've been noted for in the past, I'll drop you a couple of web sites to plan your trip. I've been to the Barren's in a 21' foot boat and we did just fine, but only because of good planning and a wary eye for weather in all directions. The fishing is pretty good most of the time, I've only had one bad trip out there out of about a dozen or so.

    www.sailvector.com a good overview of the charts online

    www.wunderground.com

    OR

    www.noaa.gov

    The key to any successful trip is planning; the rest is just semantics. Good luck and post the pictures of the nice fish you will catch. FYI, bring LOTS of bait. There are halibut, lings, eels, yellow eye and blackies that will gobble you up.
    "He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit is better than he who takes a city." ~ Proverbs 16:32

  13. #13
    Member chico99645's Avatar
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    .....Those guys in the bidarkas were too brave for me to even comprehend.....

    There is a fine line between brave/crazy/Ignorance. I think mother nature is a little kind to some folks in the above catagory. I personally don't like to give her upper hand. Pick you days, watch your weather, have a game plan and don't gamble with other peoples lives and if you get yourself in a pickle, don't expect someone to "always" come bail you out.

  14. #14

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    I have a friend who's run his C-dory 22 out around the Southern Tip of K-bay, and I presume out to the barrens. He said the fishing can be phenomnal, if the weather is perfect enough to get out there. He also said that the weather turns fast, so as soon as you see things turning, lines up and head back to port.

    Then again, this is the same guy that took his C-dory to Montague from Seward to go deer hunting. It's been a few years since he told me the story but as I recall he said the trip back was sporty. When he finally got his boat tied up and got on the dock, he laid down and kissed the dock. Then he made his way to the bar and drank until it closed.
    I know that story from somewhere.....and it aint mine. Perhaps a C-Brat meeting???? But I go over towards Montague on nice days very frequently from Seward in my CD 22. I figure that if it is iffy in front of Day Harbor you may as well try out in front of Fault Point for a while as there just isn't much point in going. It beats the boat and just isn't worth it. Or better yet, if it is that bad, go chase salmon that day in the Day Harbor or Resurrection Bay... But if you can get over to Fault Point there is fish there most of the time so why not? If things get bad there is is just a quick hop up to Bowen's Anchorage to fight the dang flies. And you count on them to be there in just about all conditions......If you get out to Johnstones and it gets crummy, it is just a short hop around the Cape into Puget Bay where there are decent anchorages. And if you made it that far, now you've got to worry about gas a bit getting back in my boat.....No, I think going down to the Barrens is totally different. There are levels in confort in boating. For example in PWS there are lots of little spots to hide and I feel very safe there. For the most part, it is a very short trip to protection. In the North Gulf those little spots are few and far between, but you probably will get there unless you fished far too long and pushed it. Out by the Barrens, well good luck if something kicks up with that tide, the winds coming in/out of the inlet, and an unfavorable wind/tide forecast. It could really spell serious trouble since there is little cover. And the cover that is present is very far away.....I was joking about the bidarkas....Once again I am on the 30 foot charter.....

  15. #15
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    I went out last year. Nice rollers going out, but as the day went on the water was flat as glass.
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    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  16. #16
    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    We have a 22' Hewescraft and we regularly go down to Perl and Elizabeth when the water is nice. We've had days out there where we easily could've gone to the Barrens but chose to fish closer.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

  17. #17

    Default I'm jacked, if it all comes together

    I have the NOAA weather report for the Barrens and vicinity sitting on my monitor, apparently I'm more serious than I first thought. As I consider the matter, the more interested I am in the idea. Yet, there's a fair piece of ground to fish and explore between Homer and Perl.....when I seroiusly think about it, I've barely touched all that there is to see and fish closer to port.

    Having all the other factors in line and in my favor like weather and seas is the minimum. If I can find someone heading that way that I can stay in touch with in case of a sudden love connection with a dead head is important, too. Hooking up with a few other experienced fisher types that want to ride along for the adventure and to keep an eye out will help with the comfort level.

    Thx, for all the tips, links, and recommendations, see you out there......
    Last edited by pontiac-chief-51; 01-31-2010 at 12:10. Reason: typing error

  18. #18
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    It's all about weather and ocean conditions. We have run our 24 Sea Sport out to Pearle before without a hitch. My weather guide is if the seas allow us to fish and have fun it is safe as I hate fishing in rough water. On the other hand my son doesnt get phazed by it. Probably the worse part about running out of the bay and heading towards Flat or Pearle is as soon as you make that left hand turn and enter all that "soup". Doesnt last long but can be bad enough to make you rethink your plans.

    My son is the adverterous one when it comes to fishing, always wanting to fish that new hotspot. Decided to venture out to the Barrens this coming year as well, any tips on what water to fish?
    Tennessee

  19. #19
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    I fished the Barren Islands two years ago with a charter out of Homer. The weather was perfect - cloudy but dead calm. It took us three hours, one way. We were not the only boat there, which was comforting. The fishing was good, but not great. Lots of halibut in the 30-40# range. Most of the time, the bait never hit the bottom. A halibut would take it first. The biggest we landed was 75#'s. We fished in about 150 feet of water with herring and salmon heads. Take lots of bait. We went thru to boxes of herring (6 anglers).

    Lots of whales and sea birds out there. Even the guide said it was rare to see it so calm. You could see Afognak Island easily. It was a great trip!

    However, we also saw many more boats swing south towards the Chugach Islands. Apparently, that area has alot of lingcod and rockfish, to go along with the halibut. If it's calm enough to fish the Barren Islands, it's calm enough to fish the Chugach Islands, which seemes like an attractive alternative.

    Best of luck.

  20. #20
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    i've fished the barrens twice with alaska coastal marines overnight charter. we slammed the chicken halibut till the current picks up then you need a handfull of bricks to hold your bait down..tons and tons of little halbit, we never boated anything over 50lbs...but i'm sure they just take us to the chicken hole to fill the boat...was flat twice in the evenings and super rollers the morning tides...70 something foot boat sound right? the islands themselves are pretty cool...no rockfish or lings where we fished, north side of the islands.
    Www.blackriverhunting.com
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