August trip to South Central Alaska



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  • August trip to South Central Alaska

    Two couples flying in from Connecticut will be traveling together, but in separate rental campers ,from August 5th to August 15th. We plan on some fly fishing and sight seeing on the way to Denali and then on the Kenai. I spent two years stationed at Fort Richardson in the sixties and am anxious to trace my steps on the Kenai I have never seen the Denali area except for a fly in to the Deska River in 1963. There were no roads from Anchorage to Denali at that time.
    I have lots of questions for you. To start with, would the fishing for Silvers and Rainbows in August be better north or south of Anchorage? Where would you suggest we fish? Any suggestions for RV rental companies? Guides? Tackle? Protection from No See Ums?

  • #2
    start fishing cohos early in your trip
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.


    • #3
      Great time of the year for valley fishing

      Tally, IMHO, you are coming to AK at an excellent time. As you make your way to Denali, you can stop and hit the Parks streams. The first week of August is great for Coho and Bow fishing in those streams.

      For Coho, if you fish Sheep or Sunshine creeks I would suggest a #5 vibrax in either red or blue, if you bring casting tackle. Montana Creek I'd go with an ESL (egg sucking leech). You also be here for the peak of the Pink/Chum run which are always fun to catch as well.

      Bows will be agressively feeding off the decaying flesh and eggs from the Kings that entered the waters in late June and early July. I've found that articulated leeches work well as well as white flesh pattern flies. Walk upstream from the bridge and you will find numerous runs and holes where the Bows hang.

      If you are planning on going with minimal equipment, I'd suggest a 7wt as it can handle all of the species mentioned.
      Proudly Serving Since 1997
      The circle is complete again, finally. The force is once again balanced!
      "Only a Sith deals in absolutes in regards to fishing!"


      • #4
        Some general thoughts,

        For bugs, nothing but 100% Ben's.

        For fishing, too broad of a question. There are some books you should get that would help tremendously.

        One comes to mind with your trip, "Fishing the Alaska Road System" (or similar). It is for sale in the forum store, under the fishing section. Click "Store" in the top right of this screen.

        Also, "Alaska Fishing" by Gunnar Pederson is a great book. Each chapter is on a species.

        My favorite book perhaps, "Flyfisher's Guide to Alaska" by Scott Haugen. It has over 100 maps. This is THE book for telling you where to go, when to go, and how to get there. A very valuable resource and each chapter is a different geopgraphic section of the state. This is a must read.

        I am only familiar with the Kenai and can't comment on the other area of your trip. But the books above, with the input from others here, should get you in the right direction in no time.

        For renting a RV, better get on that soon. I have seen an ad in Fish Alaska magazine many times for "ABC RV Rentals" or similar name.

        Below are some ideas for other things to do on the Kenai.

        I have fished on the Kenai Penninsula and can recommend Puffin Charters in Seward for halibut. I had a great trip with them. If in the Seward area, consider getting up to Troutfitters in Cooper Landing and having them take you out on the Upper Kenai one day. This could be a very good day of fishing. They are top notch and have a website with lots of info. If in that area, be sure to stop by Gwins Lodge and get a burger and look around. That is a famous spot for fisherman. Which reminds me, as you are heading south out of Anchorage, you will go by a small town, Girdwood. If time permits, stop by a restaurant called Chair 5 and have a halibut sandwich or burger. Nice microbrews too. Cool spot for lunch.

        If time alllows, take a one day site seeing cruise along the fjords near Seward with Kenai Fjords Tours. Did this twice and the second time (last May) we went on the "Captains Choice Tour". It was a smaller boat than the others and got closer to wildlife. We saw all kinds of wildlife. Something you and your family would never forget. I will be doing this trip again myself. Below is a link to some images from that trip. All the wildlife and glacier images were from that day cruise. Awesome trip.

        While in Seward, be sure to check out the Sealife Center. By the small boat harbor there is a restaruant with windows overlooking the boat harbor. Got the best crab legs I ever ate there. On the way down to Seward from Anchorage, near Portgage, you will see on the right side of the road a wildlife refuge. Bears, moose, eagles, elk, etc.. can be seen there. Drive through, pay like $5 or something and spend 30 minutes checking out the animals.

        Also, near Seward, check out Exit Glacier. You can walk right up to it. Maybe a 1/4 mile hike to it from the parking lot. And if dog mushing is of interest, Mitch Seavey (former Iditarod champ) has the Iditaride in Seward. Check out his website. You can go there and see the kennel of 50-60 dogs and a take buggy ride pulled by the dogs. Neat stuff for anyone wanting to learn more about mushing.
        The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.


        • #5
          RV Rental

          I would suggest Great Alaskan Holidays for RV rental. They do a great job. Don't wait too long on getting your reservation in. They have a good sale going on now. See their web site.


          • #6
            Agree - better rent that RV soon

            Agree with Dan - better rent that RV soon. RVs, guide services, and if planning a park tour, Denali tour bus reservations, Denali campground reservations -- all go quick.

            We also had an excellent experience with Great Alaskan Holidays:

            PM me about CruiseAmerica if you want. I personally would avoid them.

            A guided fishing experience sounds like a good fit for you - the gear, complex regulations, potential hazards along some rivers - and probably higher % success for your alotted fishing time.

            A guided trip might provide waders (if needed), rods/reels, flies/lures and handle all the transportation/pickup and access issues, plus keep you from meeting any of our enforcement officials - something worth avoiding.

            Hope you have a great trip.
            No habitat, no hunter.


            • #7
              Additional question's

              Is Ben's a brand of insect repellant?
              Is there a place in Denali to hook up an RV ?


              • #8
                Ben's is bug spray. The name is synonomous with bug spray in some remote Alaska towns like Nome and Kotzebue. They call it bug dope, but it is Ben's. Hard to even find any other products sold up there. It is in little orange bottles. I prefer the spray on type. It is liquid, but sprays like a cologne bottle. Cabelas and Campmor sell it online. Works great, but it will make your lips numb if you get it on them. Also, burns the eyes. Don't get near those areas and keep it off plastic. It will eat up sunglass's and watch bands. Keep it off of small children. But it works, plain and simple.

                As for the RV, better get on it man. The slow economy may help as less people have money to travel. The flip side, people may be opting for cheaper vacations and the RV's may be more popular then usual. Who knows. But get on it soon. They have a tendency to book up fast from what I have heard.
                The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.


                • #9
                  Getting on it

                  I will be renting that RV within 24 hours. Do you know if there are hook ups at Denal?
                  I will also get some Ben's to take up with me. Are those no see um bug coats worth their while? My wife is really concerned about no see ums. Someone else had recommended them t o me for no see ums.
                  I suppose I will need a bigger net than I carry on the back of my vest. Should I buy a larger hand net up there? It might be easier.


                  • #10
                    In my experience, I've never had a problem with no seeums in the parks road system area or the Kenai Peninsula. Only had problems with them out in the bush. Bug dope should be fine to keep the mosquitoes at bay.
                    Denali park I believe is self contained. You can check it on line. Only three campgrounds within the park and they are near the road. There are private campgrounds with full hook-ups nearby.
                    Along the Parks Hwy. you can also get guided fishing on the Little Susitna River and guided or drop-off fishing on the Talkeetna/Clear Creek area. Google the rivers and I'm sure the guides will pop up. A "Mile Post" would be handy for your RV.
                    Have a great trip.
                    To bead or not to bead, that is the question... :confused:


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