Fairbanks & Interior
Howdy folks. Gary here, new forum member. Currently in Medical Lake, WA but enroute to Eielson AFB in March. Could never get to the great state of Alaska in my 22.5 years with Uncle Sam's Army, but my Air Force wife managed to save the day. I am absolutely stoked!
I have, of course, done plenty of research on local lakes and rivers, but would like to hear firsthand from some of you folks when you've got time to spare. I'm a stillwater nut....chironomids, baby! Yeah, I stare at indicators! I also have plenty of time on rivers, swinging away.
What can I expect from the Interior in the way of lakes, rivers and the species that inhabit them? My understanding is there's not a lot of salmon and steelhead that far north. Is there a lot of good water near Eielson when I only have a few hours to burn?
A few beat up salmon make it into the Chena an Salcha rivers - Not much of a fishery but lots of people still fish it. There are grayling in both of those rivers that are fun to catch. A few local lakes are stocked with rainbows & silvers as well. My favorite fishing in the interior is pike but you have to travel a little for the better fishing. Welcome to the forum and the interior of AK.
You have options and those you spend time on the water and doing the research are rewarded. You have the option of checking in with the Base DNR which has a complete list of lakes that hold fish on Base Lands. Moose, Manchu, Grayling, and Trout Lake are some of your main areas available concerning on Base lake fishing. You will find Bows, Char, Grayling, and some Pike available. Just off Base Lands you have 28 mile pit about 20 miles down the road you have a large lake in regards to interior standands called Harding, and a couple of smaller lakes Littler Harding, Scout and Birch then about 60 miles away you have Harding. Most of the bigger lakes have lots of boat trafffic but if you pick your time i.e. 0400 in the AM you will find summer fun.
Local Rivers include Pile Driver Slough, Badger Slough, Moose Creek, Chena and Salcha rivers. On the back side of Army and Base land you have some more remote options such as Beaver Creek and the South Fork of the Chena. All of Grayling, White Fish and Burbot. The Chena and Salcha get runs of Kings, and Chums.
Once you hit 90 miles out heading East / South East you get to Delta and the Delta Clear Water which is one of the Top Grayling streams around they also have a late Silver run the end of Sept and Oct.
For River fishing concerning Bows you either will have to travel down to the Gulkana or other tribs off the Copper River Systems on the Richardson or 4-5 hours the other direction on the Parks Hgwy to fish the Chulitna system and its tribs.
There are some stocked lakes you can fly in that also offer outstanding Bow and Grayling fishing.
Welcome to AK when you get here! I hope you and your spouse have a very good assignement.
Tight Lines and Best Wishes
Richard "Moose" Mousseau