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Thread: Sockeyes-Where to go?

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    Default Sockeyes-Where to go?

    I would like to do some sockeye fishing on a trip I am planning to Ak. Where are some good places to go? I have read that they are hard to catch in rivers, and I need some education on fishing for them.

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    Russian River 3 week in June.

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    Member Hunt&FishAK's Avatar
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    hard to catch in rivers? obviously your source is not very unreliable and knows nothing about sockeye.....kenai river anytime in June/July



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    I'm not sure what you're looking for, but as Rode mentioned, The Russian/Kenai is loaded with them, as well as people mid June/ Mid to late July. I don't live in Alaska but have worked up there and I always try to get some fishing in, this site is great for tips. If you want a great trip, the best sockeye fishing I've ever had was out on Kodiak DIY. No people, and reds so thick you'd think they were Pinks.

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    Might want to check on recent Sockeye run numbers on Kodiak. The Sockeye runs on Kodiak have been somewhat spotty the last couple years. The Kenai might be a safer choice for Sockeye.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    What's your priority in respect to access/cost/quality of fishing? If you can swing it, head over to Bristol Bay to fish one of the many rivers over there. You can fly into Illiamna for a reasonable cost, and within a mile walk of the airport you can get into absolutely phenomenal fishing that will blow the Kenai/Russian out of the water. I do love the Russian, though.... Both areas have their advantages.

    Russian (far upriver away from most crowds):






    Illiamna:




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    Member Mark Collett's Avatar
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    Really nice pictures there Brian.Makes a guy wanna be there now..........

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    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Hey Brian...How old are those Pics..... Just messing with ya
    Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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    Member kenaibow fan's Avatar
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    1996.........lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rode Warrior View Post
    I would like to do some sockeye fishing on a trip I am planning to Ak. Where are some good places to go? I have read that they are hard to catch in rivers, and I need some education on fishing for them.
    As previously mentioned by others...The Kenai is probably going to be your easiest bet. Catching Reds is about as difficult as catching your fishing buddies boot, with a bare hook. Education will come quick...just watch the locals along the bank for about 5 minutes. Reds are Alaskan's Meat Fish...we rake 'em out of the creeks by the hundreds of thousands. Snagging a lot of them,,,if they are snagged outside the mouth then they are foul hooked...some keep them anyway and depending on where you are fishing, whether it is legal to do that or not. Some places you can keep a foul hooked fish and some places you can't...very regional in acceptability/legality. Watching the locals will be the best indicator as to just what you could reasonably expect to get away with. Key search words on the internet are: Lining, Flossing, Red Salmon, Russian River and Snagging Salmon.
    "96% of all Internet Quotes are suspect and the remaining 4% are fiction."
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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alaskachuck View Post
    Hey Brian...How old are those Pics..... Just messing with ya
    The top Russian River one is reasonably old, but I still find peace like that every year. The 2nd one on the Russian is from 2008 when sodabiscuit first visited. The pictures from the Newhalen are from 2009.

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    What rivers on Kodiak? I would like to go out there and guide myself.

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    Member SkinnyD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rode Warrior View Post
    I would like to do some sockeye fishing on a trip I am planning to Ak. Where are some good places to go? I have read that they are hard to catch in rivers, and I need some education on fishing for them.
    You don't catch sockeye salmon. You snag them. You snag them in the mouth. There are thousands and they constantly open and close their mouths as they swim upstream, which makes it possible to "catch" them.

    Hold your leader tightly between your thumb and forefinger... now pull one end. That is what it feels like to pull a leader through a sockeye's mouth. When you feel the line in the corner of his mouth, you set the hook. If your leader is too short, you will snag them in the back and have to turn them loose. Long leader, tight line, snag them in the mouth. If anyone tells you they are biting a chartreuse fly, they are lying to you. They are being snagged on chartreuse, red, black, white, and every other color.

    Leave your romantic notions of Alaskan fishing at the house in Iowa and bring a sturdy pole, heavy line, and yank them out like everyone else. If you want to catch something in a sporting manner, try pike or trout or grayling.
    Passing up shots on mergansers since 1992.


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    Very well said........ At least ONE person is willing to be honest!!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by SkinnyD View Post
    You don't catch sockeye salmon. You snag them. You snag them in the mouth. There are thousands and they constantly open and close their mouths as they swim upstream, which makes it possible to "catch" them.

    Hold your leader tightly between your thumb and forefinger... now pull one end. That is what it feels like to pull a leader through a sockeye's mouth. When you feel the line in the corner of his mouth, you set the hook. If your leader is too short, you will snag them in the back and have to turn them loose. Long leader, tight line, snag them in the mouth. If anyone tells you they are biting a chartreuse fly, they are lying to you. They are being snagged on chartreuse, red, black, white, and every other color.

    Leave your romantic notions of Alaskan fishing at the house in Iowa and bring a sturdy pole, heavy line, and yank them out like everyone else. If you want to catch something in a sporting manner, try pike or trout or grayling.
    Like!!! In facebook fashion.
    "96% of all Internet Quotes are suspect and the remaining 4% are fiction."
    ~~Abraham Lincoln~~

  16. #16
    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    The top Russian River one is reasonably old, but I still find peace like that every year. The 2nd one on the Russian is from 2008 when sodabiscuit first visited. The pictures from the Newhalen are from 2009.

    I remember when you took soda fishing my friend.....You now what fishing the Newhalen does to me...Just keeping you on you toes
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  17. #17

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    I'm also planning my trip to AK for Salmon, but will be there August 3-8. Will the Russian still be the place to be? I am just looking for good salmon fishing and it doesn't have to be sockeye so I may end up going along the Parks highway and fishing along the Susitna. What do you think?

  18. #18

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    The Buskin right in town has them, but I fished out at Pasagshak bay, and if you're leaving from the airport, and heading out to Pasagshak, there is a river called the American. I'm sure that was the name. WHen you cross it, on your right, there is an ATV trail, trail, 4x4 whatever you want to call it. Follow that back, it was a ways, but you will hit a river. At the time I took a bread truck back there. That thing was loaded with Reds.

    The American River had some huge Dollies the biggest I've every seen. We were getting them up to 20-24 inches.

    I should also note, i worked out there in 99 or so, so this info isn't current.

  19. #19
    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T. Chris View Post
    I'm also planning my trip to AK for Salmon, but will be there August 3-8. Will the Russian still be the place to be? I am just looking for good salmon fishing and it doesn't have to be sockeye so I may end up going along the Parks highway and fishing along the Susitna. What do you think?

    There still be reds in the russian...also the kenai should be stacked pretty thick with them from soldotna to kenai lake
    Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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    Member Mark Collett's Avatar
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    There should be a few silvers in the Kenai as well during your time frame......Fun fishing.

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