Spring, Summer, Fall Logs 2000
Winter log 1999-2000 Spring, summer, fall 1999 Log Spring summer fall 1998 Log
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I am finally back from an overseas business trip! that traveling things is not as glamorous as everyone thinks! I am just whipped! But I am back and it is TIME to fish! the tough thing is the time of year. We will be in search of that elusive first SAFE ice. Last year we were ice fishing on October 31, and two years ago it was November 7th.
Now make sure that if you venture out on the ice you go with a partner and some safety precautions. A life jacket isn't a bad idea, and you should have a rope to pull someone out with. Of course the idea is that if it is that marginal you shouldn't be on the ice in the first place. now having said that, it always amazes me how strong ice is. I feel safe on a solid clear two inches of ice. but if its two inches where you tested it, it could easily be one half inch a couple of feet over. JUST BE CAREFUL!
So I am going to to go look. BE SAFE!!!!! I can't say it enough. BUT LET THE FUN BEGIN! Dang I love the winters here!
October 8, Big-Su
The final fishing day for my friend before she headed back to Japan. I asked her what she wanted to do and she wanted to go see if we couldn't catch a different species. Seeing as she likes to take pictures, I thought the grayling would be a good candidate. After visiting one stream and finding salmon but no trout or grayling we eventually worked our way to another area where a stream joins the Big-su. The water level is pretty low when compared to the salmon season. But we tossed #1brass vibrax and #2 chrome vibrax spinners. Not hot action but we managed 3 beautiful grayling of about 16 inches and 5 rainbow trout. They average about 18 to 20 inches but we caught one monster that had to be 25 inches and 4 pounds if not more. The big rainbow battled like crazy nearly spooling her ultralight rig with 6 pound test on a couple of occasions. It didn't leap much but that's okay all the other trout we hooked looked like they were on a trampoline! It was awesome. We releaed all of the fish. I wish we had a picture of the big one but here's picture of the 20 plus inch fish!We got to the stream late and the best time was definitely as the sun was going down. I may have to try this one more time before it freezes up!
October 7, Mat-Su Valley lake
This weekend was one of my japanese friend's last weekend so we had to go fishing..right? Well looking for something we hadn't done yet, we decided to take a canoe to a small Mat-Su Valley Lake and try to find a few more rainbows and Dollies. This time year is typically hot for trout as they go on a feeding binge in preparation for the winter time. We did relatively well trolling various hardware. The best spinner was a brass blade black body panther martin spinner. I did the best using a 2 inch long Yo-Zuri pin minnow. Doug being the kind of guy that changes his lure every other minute caught them on virtually everything he threw out there. Looking at my logs we have maybe 2 to 3 more weekends before the ice starts forming on the lakes. Its a gret time to get out and hammer a few. We were fishing a stocked lake and kept a few in the 12 to 16 inch range and fried them up when we got back. They were pretty TASTY!
October 1, Swanson River
Well after the pathetic showing on Saturday,I decide to take the same two guests down to the Kenai Peninsula for some rainbow fishing. Much better day! Went and fished by the canoe landing in sterling and managed to constantly hammer rainbows from 8 to 16 inches all day long. Single eggs under a bobber did the trick. pieces of nightcrawler worked pretty well too. The trick is definitely to use a bobber since the grass makes it tough to fish any other way. Nothing huge but with ultralight tackle it was a blast! In typical rainbow fashion, they would jump as soon as you hooked them. fishing with ultralight tackle also made hooking the occasional silver a blast! They were dark red and didn't have too much fight to them but an 8 pound fish on 4 pound ultralight is always fun!
September 30, Big Lake
Talk about some SLOW fishing when it should have been good! I took two Japanese guests out fishing on Saturday to Big Lake. With the weather getting colder, you would think the rainbows would just be on a feeding binge fattening up for the winter. Well that's the way it always seem to be this time of year. Well not on Saturday. The three of us trolled around in 5 to 20 feet of water ALL day long and we had one rainbow to show for it! I have no idea what the problem was. We didn't see any fish on the sonar and we certainly didn't see any fish on the end of our lines. We tried everything from spinners, to spoons , to earthworms on a spinner harness. At the very end it was a yo-zuri pin minnow (an expensive version of the rapala) that ended up getting the one fish of the day. I may try it one more time but it'll be hard to drag myself out there considering how bad the situation was. I don't mind not catching fish, but it was pretty lame fishing! Hmmm....what to do???
September 17, Kenai River Silvers
I went fishing on the Kenai river with a guest from Japan. The drive down to Kenai was amazing. Summer's definitely over but the fall colors were out in force. The trees were definitely turning yellow and it made for some awesome scenery when you mixed it with the green pine trees and the red vegetation on the mountain areas. Oh yeah, I guess we talk about fish on this page...
Well the fishing was SLOW! We fished for about 6 hours and we hooked two fish but lost both of them...DOH! The river was clear and the river was low! I will most definitely be buying another propeller next year since I had a nice encounter with a gravel bar in the middle of the river. I have fished the river for years and its the first time I found a gravel bar there! Be careful if you go! The two fish we hooked were great examples of the second run Kenai River silver salmon. Both HUGE and mint bright. The bigger of two must have gone 16 or 17 pounds..nearly as large as many of the Ship Creek kings. And boy did they battle. Both were hooked at the Pillars with a standard spin -n - glo and roe combo rigged on a slip sinker. After talking with a park ranger, other people were having just as difficult time of hooking up. I may try it one more time. Especially if I go down and try some steelhead fishing in the Anchor River or Deep Creek net weekend. I may switch over to the rainbow fishing on the area lakes. They should be getting hot right about now. We'll see.
September 10 Deep Creek freshwater
I had an invite from Fred Bahr to come down to Ninilchik and do some fishing. The unique aspect of this trip was the flies we would be using. Fred is Native Alaskan and has access to polar bear fur. Now before anyone goes ballistic, let me tell you that these bear skins are sitting in coolers around Alaska basically going to waste because there is no market for them. They are harvested for subsistence purposes strictly in accordance with subsistence laws. Now having said that, I looked at the flies and there is an incredible shine that almost makes the fur look artificial. They make some GREAT looking flies. In the sun and under the water, the white becomes a combination of almost iridescent colors.
So after watching Fred tie up a variety of patterns, off we head to Deep Creek to see if we couldn't find a few steelhead or silvers that might be interested. It was kinda rainy and miserable but you could see the fish in the water. Mainly silvers and pinks but a few fish looked like steelhead. The silvers were about half turning color with the other half still mint bright fresh out of the ocean. It too a while to get the hang of things, I haven't used a flyrod with flyline in years. Many of you know my favorite rod is a flyrod for salmon, but I rarely cast a flyline with it. I prefer straight mono with a bit of weight in the fast flowing Alaska streams.
These flies work great! I must have 6 or 7 fish on in a matter of a couple of hours. Of course not having handled a flyrod with fly line on it for a while, I would lose all of the fish as I tried to get excess flyline off the water and back onto the reel. Still with perseverance I land a nice hen silver and a nice pink salmon. It was awesome! I can't wait to try these flies out elsewhere. The only problem is they are hard to get. In fact, Fred was just being nice and gave me a few. These flies retail as gift items for $20 to $25 dollars a piece. They make great gifts but I'm not sure I can afford $25 everytime I snag up!!!! Still they worked great. I'm trying to pry out of Fred a few of the flies in case any one out there would like them. he is putting on the finishing touches to his home page and I'll have the address for all of you in the near future. What a cool experience, fishing on a stream for Silvers and steelhead, nobody around using flies tied with polar bear hair. Have I ever said "I LOVE THIS PLACE" What an unique experience! I hope Fred invites me back!!! Oh yeah, not only can Fred tie flies, but he is dang good at cutting hair. I look more civilized now that he helped lop off the excess growth on top of my head. THANKS Fred!
September 9 Deep Creek Saltwater
Took Bob's boat out and tractor launched off the shore of Deep Creek. After running about 5 miles Southwest of Deep Creek, we decide to throw anchor and try our hand at halibut. Though Bob had caught a few fish two weeks prior, we both knew that the halibut were starting to move further off shore. Still we hoped to be able to pick up a chicken or two. Well the action was slow! With the small tides we were able to fish for most of the day using 2 pounds of lead. We had absolutely no action until the tide slackened up. Then all of the sudden Bob's rod doubles over and the battle is on. Oooooh it's a good fish! It rips out line and Bob is huffing and puffing as the we "see color." Looks big, looks brown, looks flat, looks like uh...skate??? Wow it was a monster skate that had to go at least 70 pounds. It was massive! We repeat the episode twice more, once for me and one more time for Bob. Both times we pull up some monster skated in excess of 50 pounds. great battle but not worth keeping so we cut the line and let them go. Finally Bob hooks up to a fish acting much smaller and a bit different but it gets off before we can do anything. Hmmm...I guess the halibut fishing is over for the small boats off of Deep Creek. I have heard that further south if you can find some kelp beds and structure you can pick off the occasional halibut for a bit longer.
September 3 Big Lake
Went out with Douggie and one of his buddies from back home. Decided to troll Big Lake to see if we couldn't catch anything. We got off to a late start at around 5 pm. Well it was slow. During the first 30 minutes we hook up to two nice fish, but lose them both. Well at least they are biting today...we thought...no, they were biting those 30 minutes because it took us forever to catch another fish. I got skunked, Douggie caught a nice 6 pound silver and a trout, and his friend did the best landing a couple of nice rainbows. It should only get better but that sure was disappointing! Well ya gotta have your bad days to appreciate your good days!
September 2 & 4 Ressurection Bay, Seward
Took a buddy out fishing to Seward on his last day in Alaska! We left early at 3:30am so we could fish all day. As we were driving out, we saw a spectacular display of the northern lights! It was a full 180 degrees around us! At any rate, the fishing...
It was pretty slow! The silvers were jumping everywhere! But there was no pattern, place, or anything that would help us catch fish. Well we both opt to cover as much water as possible so we put on some big spoons. After about 3 hours of casting I finally nail one on the first cast after tipping my spoon with a small piece of herring. As my arm was about to fall off from all the casting, I decided to be lazy and fish herring under a bobber. First being lazy, I snap on one of those stupid big red & white round bobbers. Why I had one, I don't know. But at any rate, they have to be pretty big floats since you need a bit of weight to cast your rig with herring on it without tearing into the fish. So as I rig the cheapo float, I notice its a "really cheap" cheap bobber. So I wrapped the line once to keep it from sliding around because the springs were pathetically weak. WHAT WAS I THINKING?? Of course I hook a fish to only have the line snap instantly. BAM, BAM, BAM...that's me pummeling my head into my desk for being so stupid! So I dig and dig and dig through my car and I find what I am looking for, a large slip bobber I used for Pike. Its amazing how much fishing gear a fully loaded truck can haul. Other people have "Plano" tackle boxes, mine is my truck....
A slip bobber is a must for this type of fishing!!!!! Its infinitely easier to cast, you can adjust the depth to 30 feet or more (try casting THAT with those stupid red bobbers), and they offered MUCH less resistance when the fish took the bait. Since I got the hit on the snap on bobber with only 4 feet of leader, I adjust the slip sinker relatively shallow at about 8 feet. Well in the next two hours, I caught three mint bright silvers! Too Awesome!
My guest didn't catch a silver, but he did manage several species of rockfish, a greenling, and a bunch of miniature ling cod (got to let them go in Resurrection Bay!). The rockfish and greenling were pretty tasty fish though! Other highlights included watching a couple of sea lions toss salmon around while feeding. they would grab the fish and flip it 10 to 15 feet in the air as the tries to break off pieces to swallow. Entertaining but I'm sure the silvers left the area for a while during all the commotion!
On Monday I head back but it was just too windy. There was surface chop and the wind was blowing at you which made casting next to impossible. I got a lot of small strikes but none that would take the bobber all the way down. I wonder what they were? I noticed a few small "salmon like" fish jumping around about 12 inches long though. I did not get skunked as I caught two mint bright pinks on herring after the wind died down a bit. Still it was fun. I'll be back sometime again for sure.
August 27, 28 & 29 Kenai Peninsula
Had a friend fly in from Malaysia for a week of fishing. I took Monday and Tuesday off from work to tag a long. What a great couple of days. First we got to my favorite small stream fishing hole and just HAMMER silvers. We easily caught our two fish limit. Spinners and bobber and roe did the trick. On Monday we head back and repeat the same thing. The silvers may be dwindling in Bird and Ship Creek, but I know a few of the streams on the Kenai Peninsula are still LOADED with silvers. I had another report from another fishing buddy that he hit another small stream on the Kenai Peninsula and caught over 20 silvers on a fly rod! We also saw another Black Bear at this fishing hole. Some guys were chasing it away and firing a gun around it. That kinda pissed me off. They said it had acted aggressive toward a camper but when I saw the bear, 4 or 5 photographers were chasing it down the bank. Didn't seem that aggressive to me and if there were that many people around, I think it was all BS and a case of testosterone idiocy if you ask me. But I wasn't at the actual campsite so maybe it was. But if the bear is already departing, why shoot at it? Especially since these morons were coming awful close to the bear. The way the photographers were hassling the bear, I'm surprised it didn't turn around and maul them. Idiots....
Okay, more fishing. On Tuesday, we hit the Kenai River to see of we couldn't find a few silvers. As I am running up a small slough, I hear whap, whap, whap...for a 25 yard stretch....huh? I know I am not bottoming out, so I look around and behind me I see a bazillion pinks going berserk on top. WOW! I have never seen such a concentration of pinks in one place on the Kenai River. We tried for silvers and just couldn't keep the pinks off the line. So we switched over to our ultralight tackle and we hammered pink after pink. It was AWSOME. Pinks get a bad rap but that's because everyone fishes them on their regular salmon rod. Go down to 6 pound line and give it a try on ultralight gear....it's a blast. Of course its even more fun when the occasional silver slams your lure. We had two on but couldn't land them. The line didn't break, the hooks just popped free. Oh well...... There were so many fish in the water that we saw a lot of eagles and we even saw a big seal up by Eagle Rock. We also saw a nice bull moose. Couldn't tell if it had 3 tines or not but we weren't hunting so it was safe! Truly an Alaskan adventure for my guest!
I guess there is still a week or two of silver fishing left. May have to keep at it! Man my hands are all torn up from releasing at least 50 pinks! I guess I shouldn't whine about being able to catch and release so many fish! You gotta love this place!!!
August 19 - Sheep Creek - Silvers.
Took a guest from Japan out fishing for Silvers. It rained all the way up but after we started fishing, it was sunny all day! My guest had fished a few times before but I figured her best bet was with roe. So I set her up with a standard roe rig and I am casting a pixie spoon on my ultralight G Loomis with 8 pound test. the rods are rated for 2 to 4 pounds but with 20 pound chums lurking about and a few rocky snags I cheated and bumped my line up a bit. Well of course after an hour of watching her rod tip do nothing, I asked her if she'd like to try her hand at casting. I hadn't caught anything yet either, and no one else had around us except for a chum and a pink. Well I hand her my ultralight and I tell her I am going to to the car to get a few more lures. I get back and she has a nice 8 pound silver on the bank! Huh? How did you do that??? When did you do that? Who did you pay to buy that fish???
Okay, it's gotta be just coincidence that this year, everytime I turn my back on my guests, they catch fish. Well to make an embarrassing story as short as possible, she manages to hammer two more nice silvers with the largest going well over 12 pounds. The big silver was already turning colors with a massive hook nose. A great picture, but we let it go! Still she manages her two fish limit keeping some nice fish. All three were caught on a red and silver pixie on 8 pound trilene xl, on a G Loomis ultralight outfit. It was a major battle to get every fish in! She did a great job!! Just to make sure no one thinks I got skunked, she let me use the ultralight and I managed a pink salmon. Yipee!
One thing I noticed was that most of the silvers I saw hitting spoons were hitting them right at the bank. They must follow the lure in and whack it when they start running out of space. Keep the retrieve going all the way into the shore line. It was awesome watching fish strike lures in 1 foot of water with two feet of line dangling from the tip of the rod. Conversely, I was amazed that I didn't see anyone break a rod tip when the fish hit so close.
August 12&13 - few silver rumors...
Well the silver season seems to be going great! My guide buddies on the Kenai are having no problem finding fish, and even my urban fishing buddies are hammering fish out of Bird Creek and Ship Creek. I think the urban fishery will start to die off here but silvers will be available through the month of September.
Does anyone know why they would close the silver salmon season on the Kenai River in October??? The late silvers in the Kenai are AWESOME fish. They look fight and taste different then the silvers we see in August and early September. they are usually twice as big. I'd go fish them even if the limit was one fish!
The streams up north appear to remain productive. I am hearing more trout being caught in streams like Montana & Willow Creeks. I've heard there were a few bears around the streams so go with a group and make lots of noise. for the most part the bears will act much like the one I encountered a couple of weeks ago. They tend to be more scared of you then you are of them...if you can believe that! Still if you plan on walking through thick brush, carry some pepper spray and always let other people know where you are going and when you will be back.
August 5, Caswell Creek & Sheep Creek -pinks, pinks, chum, pinks, chum...huh silver?
Took two Japanese guests up north to see if we couldn't catch a few fish. First stop was Caswell Creek. The water was low and slow. Despite being able to see hundreds of pinks, we couldn't get them to hit anything. Its pretty typical, without current, the fish seem to be very passive. One of guests manages to hammer a nice silver on a #5 fire tiger vibrax before we leave and we manage to hook maybe 3 pinks in 2 hours. next stop was Sheep Creek. Bingo! Pink after pink after pink. It was a blast! Mix in the occasional 15 pound chum and you have some excitement. I even manage to pull one nice silver out of the creek with a pixie. It was actually pretty cool, I was simply ripping the lure in as I thought I was done with the cast and as I was picking the lure out of the water, the silver just came out of nowhere and smashed it! Too cool. I saw it all and it was literally two feet from my feet. Awesome.
As the paper was saying this is a GREAT time to get out with the family. Pinks are out in force and they are the perfect fish to introduce them to salmon. Lots of places to go. up North, Hope, the Kenai Peninsula. Not to be the bearer of bad news, but we have August and September for silvers, then October for trout and if you check my logs from last year, we were ICE fishing October 31!!! Still a bit early to sharpen the ol'Auger blades....but it's not too far off!
July 30 Kenai Peninsula Silvers
THE SILVERS ARE IN! Hammered the silvers on a small stream on the Kenai Peninsula! In a span of 3 hours, I managed to land over 20 silvers. Most of them came in a short 30 minute flurry. I usually don't catch release silvers because the higher mortality rate, but I was careful as possible to release them unharmed. The ticket was roe and bobber and I made sure to set the hook early so they wouldn't swallow the bait! I also had a close bear encounter! The distance was about 10 yards, both the bear and I froze as I rounded the corner and came face to face. After getting my wits about me, I screamed at the bear and it took off in the other direction. Whew! You gotta love Alaska's wilderness...but you also gotta respect as well!
July 15-25 Kenai Peninsula Vacation! **revised**
Okay, what a GREAT vacation I just had! Of course I only caught one red and two silvers from July 8 to 25, but that's okay! HUH? Well I had some bigger fish to fry this vacation. I remember in my logs a year or two ago about how fortunate I was to not have any responsibilities other than my own. Lemmee see...oh yeah, you can find the statement I made here in my logs of 5/24/99. Well I guess that will be coming to an end. Can you believe it, I got engaged! Her name is Aki and she's great! I hope it all works out. What can I say? She loves to fish! That's good enough for me! Still no one here wants to read about my personal life, the topic of the day, on this site is still FISHING!!!!! Click on the pix for a bigger JPEG image!
Fortunately for all of you, a couple of my frat brother's happened to be in town during this week as well so they caught plenty of fish. I thought mixing my fiancée and frat brothers would be like oil & water but they got a long great! I'm starting to compile a vacation page. For a lot more pictures go to: . Picture Highlights of the 2000 All Zete Fishing Tournament right here!
Early in the vacation the reds were in the rivers in force. Fishing above the Soldotna bridge, it was no problem the first couple of days to hammer the reds. Looking up and down the banks, we hooked up and landed fish at a rate of 2 to 1 over the other fisherman. When I was checking in on them, I walked up and down the banks to see what we were doing differently then the rest. The answer was pretty simple. We were using gamakatsu hooks and everyone else was using the 39cent Russian river flies. Take a size 1/0 gamakatsu octopus hook next to a factory turned Russian river fly and take a close look. You can fish whichever one you want, but if you want to catch fish...it's a no brainer. Things to look for are sharpness, diameter of the entry point, hook gap, and amount of material used to tie the fly. The funny thing is that the gamakatsu hooks are cheaper! Yup, in 100 lots, you can get them for under 40 cents each. By a 2 dollar package of yarn, and you have 100 Russian river flies that will outfish the cheap factory stuff 2 to 1. Be careful though! In flyfishing only areas, you'll have to use smaller gamakatsu hooks since there is a gap restriction in many areas. even with the smaller Gamakatsu hooks, you'll double your hook up rate. If you have to use the Russian river pre made flies, here's a great trick. The material is there to get the angler to buy the hooks. Take nail clippers or scissors and clip off about half of the material used to tie the fly. Also make sure there are no hairs obstructing the hook point. It'll sink better and the result is greater hook ups. Other difference included we were using a longer leader length ( up to 4 feet) and we were fishing right up against the cut bank shore line while everyone else was flipping 20 feet out as far as they could comfortably flip. REDS ARE BY THE SHORE! The reds then proceeded to dwindle until the last weekend when my dipnetting buddies caught a total of 10 fish in three separate trips to the Kasilof and Kenai River.
Kings were a little better. the problem was that we encountered some really high water volumes. The clarity of the water wasn't bad, but the volume of flowing water made it hard to fish. The first couple of days, we got nothing! But a couple of my guide buddies were scratching out a few fish. Well by now you know who I turn to for the best advice on catching salmon and that's Danny France of Salmon Herder Charters. Another on of my friends chartered with him over the weekend and hammered two really nice fish! Thanks again Dan. You can see the two fish on the left. He had told me that spin & glo and egg combo was working great. the only problem was that the standard 20 foot jet planers were just not stable enough in the high water. He of course was right. With the smaller planers, everytime I made an adjustment on the boat you can just see the line dipping side to side as the small planer worked hard to dive to the bottom. We solved the problem by going to a size 40 (versus 20) Luhr Jensen jet planers. We opted not to use the massive large planers because they just pull to hard for a few of our rods. We also lengthened our leaders by an extra couple of feet. the planers tracked truer behind boat and the result was the next two times out, we caught 3 bright chrome kings over 40 pounds!!!!!!!! All of them caught backtrolling spin & glo and eggs near Eagle Rock.
Here are the three fish Scott and Jim P caught. The thing was they hammered two of the fish by themselves! here I am supposedly showing them how to catch fish and the one day I am not on the boat, they limit out! Thanks guys!
Maybe the most interesting news was that the SIVLERS ARE IN! I have reports from Ship Creek that the action is starting to pick up. But better yet, I managed a couple of nice silvers from secret spot and so did my frat buddies. Nothing fast and furious but they are in the rivers and they should be fishable at least through September!
We also hammered the Pinks in resurrection Creek. What a beautiful place Hope is! And better yet, we were fishing a fast section of the creek and the pinks were tough! We got spooled once with 16 pound line. I think we hooked over 100 fish in 2 hours between three people. quarter and half ounce pixies were the ticket here.
Great vacation! Weather was brutal but we caught fish. I've already caught grief from my fishing buddies about me chasing something other than salmonoids on this vacation, but fear not! Lifestyle remains status quo! When I asked the big question, I am pretty sure it was prefaced with something like "my fishing is not to be interfered with." She accepted and like I said she loves to fish and is a great photographer to boot. Maybe I'll have more and better pictures!
July 4 - Montana Creek- Kings
My buddy Kurt needed one more King to catch his 5 kings for the trip. So what else can you do but give it a last go. So after work, off we headed to Montana Creek. The action wasn't fast and furious but both Kurt and I manage to hook and land several Kings before deciding to keep some nice fish. I landed a 40 pounder and Kurt nailed a 25 pounder. Both fish were caught on a small spin n glo over single hooks. No bait is allowed, but the kings will whack just the spin n glos. Talk about a battle! A 40 pound fish from the shore in the raging current of the Big Su river tested my equipment to the limit! I actually snapped my 20 pound line on a previous fish so I moved up to my Big water rod which basically has 40 pound test. It still took a half hour to get the fish in!
Well from here to the end of July I anticipate that I will be fishing about 90% of the time on the Kenai River. Get ready for them reds! They are a blast! Of course we'll do our best to land that first triple digit sport caught king. 100 pounds? It can be done! It might as well be on my boat! While we have seen a bunch of small fish and jacks, I have also heard reports that the big fish are bigger this year! Ooooh, one sure thing! THE FISH ARE IN THE WATER! Gotta get out and wet a line!
July 1 & 2 - Kenai river - Kings
Well Bob, Kurt, & I head off for the Kenai River on Saturday. We sure didn't see too many big fish. We did however see an unusually high number of jacks caught including 3 by our boat. The Big Kings were scarcer. From 4am to noon, we saw maybe 5 fish total hooked up of any decent size. On the upstream run back to the boat launch, we did see 5 or 6 more kings hooked from the High banks to Eagle Rock. Our best hits came downriver at the "cow pasture". I had one great takedown....but I fell a sleep! Net thing I know my line is racing up river and everyone screaming! I set the hook nothing. Dang it! dang it! dang it! Oh well it'll teach me to drive all night and just jump in a boat. Is that why every other normal human being sleeps? Sleep is a luxury while the Kings are running! But I certainly paid for the lack of sleep! Live and learn!
Well the "Herder", Dan France of Salmon Herder charters comes through again! While we flailed and failed (like the 90% of other boats) Danny picked up a nice 58 pound king for Bob's wife Susan who was out with her dad. Nice catch Susan! Not to be outdone, Bob heads back out on to the Kenai on Sunday and hammers a 52 pounder! Too cool! Click on the image for a larger jpeg image. Both of their fish were caught backtrolling spin n glos and roe outfits in between falling in hole and Big Eddy somewhere.
Not to be outdone, Kurt heads off to the Kasilof immediately after we are off the Kenai and hammers himself a nice 30 pounder on a fenton fly tipped with roe. its late in the season, but the Kings appear to be still in the Kasilof in good numbers and I have heard reports of reds moving through as well.
I'm going to sneak up North to check out the fishing for the last couple days of Kings. the water is definitely going to be higher so I'm interested in seeing what the fishing will be like. I also just got done looking at site by Tony who has started up a web page like mine. great stuff! I mentioned it earlier but if you like my pages, you'll like Tony's pages. More info the better! Check his page out right here: http://www.geocities.com/Yosemite/Campground/4909/index.html
June 26 & 27 - Ship Creek
the run at Ship Creek has started to dwindle. Still there seemed to be a few fish around. The majority of the fish are colored but a few bright ones are still being pulled out. I can't say I have had much luck but I'm only able to fish a couple of hours at a time due to work! The Russian river sounds good. We'll be hitting the Kenai this weekend. Hopefully they will allow bait. we'll see. Lifting the restrictions was a good sign for the Kenai! Gotta give it a try!
June 25 - Montana Creek
Kurt-san from Arizona was up so I had to go do some fishing. Been a bit tuf to get out of the office after two weeks in Asia. Still Kurt-san is a fishing maniac so it was the right motivation to get me out. Well after working till 10pm on Saturday, I picked Kurt up and off we were to Montana Creek. After getting there early, the water was up high limiting the fishing holes. Everything seemed to be working. Kurt hooked up and landed five fish in a span of four hours. I opted to let him fish in the crowded spot. Of course I didn't catch anything. Should have brought some spinners. number 6 fire tiger vibrax seemed to be a hot offering. I got my guest hooked up so I was happy. I know there is fish in Ship Creek still and it sounds like the run on the Kenai is picking up! Time to fish those KINGS!!!!!!
June 23 - Ship Creek
Good reports from Ship Creek. My buddies are hammering fish left and right. I've also had some killer reports from the rivers up north. This may be your best time to go out and hammer a king! Do it in downtown Anchorage or try for a bit bigger fish 2 hours north of Anchorage.
June 16 - Ship Creek The FISH ARE IN!
Well I'm back from two weeks in Asia. I haven't had the time to fish but I've got good news. Despite the restrictions on Ship Creek, the fish are IN! My buddies are down right now hammering fish. IT IS TIME! I've heard good reports from river up north as well. If ya want a King this is it. I heard I didn't miss too much though all of my buddies have all hammered a couple of kings already. Check Fish and Game's home page for details at: http://www.state.ak.us/local/akpages/FISH.GAME/sportf/geninfo/eo-nr/region2.htm
May 27-29 - Kasilof River
THANKS! to Danny France of Salmon Herder Charters. All weekend long we had 8 people fishing but we only caught three fish from the shoreline. But on Sunday Sean and I went out with Dan and had a great day. I hooked & landed 4 Kings! Sean hooked 3 Kings, and the other two guys on the boat hooked a total of 3 fish. We spent the day back bouncing spin n glo and roe rigs as Dan probed the holes. The line would skirt off to the side after a light tap and set the hook. Hold on tight! We fished in holes less than 3 feet deep and so you would only have 5 feet of line. Hooking a king on five feet of line is just WILD! Too much fun. The herder comes through again! I'm off on a business trips but I'll update more detail here when I get back!
It was tough fishing from the shore. Only a couple of our group landed fish. The fish are all mint bright and beautiful. We definitely got our chances but as always these first of the year fish are hard to hook up!
Douggie stayed in town but managed to hammer another King out of Ship Creek! Good job Doug!
May 23 - Ship Creek
I just got a message left on my phone that Douggie hammered a 33 pound King down at Ship Creek on the afternoon high tide! Amazing thing is Doug's recovering from a leg injury but at high tide he was able to battle the fish in! Givin his condition, I am sure he was still fishing a spin-n-glo and roe rig. Good job Douglas....the second king of the year for our group and its still May 23. This is a good start.
May 20 - Deep Creek Saltwater
Let's hear it again for "The Herder", Dan France, of Salmon Herder Charters. He generously took us out on his own time to "test the waters" of this fishery. Dan is always so busy on the Kenai and Kasilof Rivers, he seldom gets to around to this fishery. But heck, Who am I to say "no" to an offer of a test run fishing for Kings!
My father, Dan, and I head out on the afternoon tide in search of King Salmon. We start out trolling cut plug herring using a flasher and two ounces of lead down by the twin falls. It couldn't have been 20 minutes and I am hooked up to a mint bright king! SWEET-OH! After a good battle, I land my first King caught in saltwater! Too cool! It wasn't huge but it was a solid fish of around 25 pounds. It was so bright it almost looked black..it was kinda strange on how it could look so chrome from one angle and almost black from another. So we are starting to think...THIS IS EASY! But of course things never work out the way ya think. We trolled another 3 hours and we saw a total of four other fish caught in an armada of at least 75 boats. Good thing one was on our line! Who knows, they could have hammered them on the net tide series, salmon fishing is like that.
For the last couple of hours we head off shore for some halibut fishing. We didn't go to far since we were in Dan's powerboat he uses on the Kenai river. Still his boat handled awesome and we were full throttle on the water! We didn't hammer halibut but both Dan and I hammered a bunch of chickens. I think the biggest was 30 pounds. But after filleting the fish out, we had plenty of nice fish!!! This combo thing is too cool. Fresh Salmon and fresh Halibut tonight! Are we spoiled here in Alaska or what!!! We are definitely doing this as an annual deal! Dan's streak of tough fishing days with me continues...BUT his streak of putting my group onto fish continues! You NEVER guarantee fish in fishing, that's why they don't call it catching (how old is that joke?), but Dan has come through in tough conditions every time. Thanks again Dan! oh yeah, I'm booked with Dan next week for a bit of Drift fishing the Kasilof! I'm spoiling myself a bit now because I'm off on an overseas trip for two weeks...BUMMER! A major miss in timing, but I'll still be able to hammer a few first run kings I'm sure.
May 13 - Susitna River Ship Creek update
Well, I didn't fish much this weekend but I got some interesting reports in. First of all, Tony and Vic, emailed me again. They are the guys in the photo below. I guess they did well for the rainbows in the Big Su tribs. Tony's got a log page going about his fishing adventures. you can check it out at: http://www.geocities.com/Yosemite/Campground/4909/ Although I haven't had much luck this year, Tony & Vic seem to be hammering the trout! Take a look at his site, He just started it last year but its got some nice photos and it should only get more fish as we start into the salmon season!
Martin also had a report for Ship Creek. More and more fisherman are now hitting Ship Creek. While I am sure the action is not fast nor furious, fish are starting to show up. As Martin was in the area for work, he noticed one fisherman hooked up and battling a nice king. This is the second report I have heard of a King being hooked up in Ship Creek. It's almost time!!!!!!
May 7 2000 - Susitna River & Kenai River & Ship Creek update/rumor
I didn't get out to fish much but I got an email from another fisherman saying he had caught fish on the Big-Su this weekend. Tony writes that he and a friend caught and released four fish ranging from 13 to 22.5 inches. Some really nice fish! They caught them tossing out spoons. I went up and tried it for a couple of hours but didn't see a fish. It was amazing how the water levels would change by a foot or more in just a couple of hours. During the morning and mid day when the clear water (relatively speaking) run off is greater seems to be better for fishing. Definitely saw more signs of activity like diving terns and sea gulls that I didn't last weekend. Most of the area lakes are starting to break up but it might be a couple more weeks before the lakes "turn over" and the fishing improves.
KENAI RIVER UPDATE : I got a call from the Salmon Herder, Dan France. He wanted to see if I was interested in trying for saltwater kings off of Deep Creek. Well, how can I pass that up? Dad and I will go out with Dan on May 20th weather permitting. I hope we get a good weather day! I'm definitely going out with Dan on May 28th for a drift fishing trip on the Kasilof! Oh yeah, IT'S TIME for those KINGS!!!! Dan reports that he has already hooked up into two king in the lower Kenai River on his last trip out. Sounds like the new Single hook only regulations are making it tough to keep good fish on. The KINGS ARE IN the KENAI!
Ship Creek rumor: I also heard a second hand rumor that a lucky angler caught a King Salmon from Ship Creek on Friday, May 5th. Wow! That's early! Look for the peak to occur from about June 7th to about June 20th. Still its just about time to check out the gear.
I'm gonna maximize my King adventure with a start out in Saltwater on May 20th and an early season drift trip on the Kasilof on May 28th! SWEEEEEEET-OH!
April 30 2000 - Susitna River and Mat-su valley lake
Well I'm not sure where this entry goes but I guess its time to begin a new set of logs for the Spring, Summer, fall logs for the year 2000. My apologies for the lack of picture in the winter logs but I have three or four disposal cameras undeveloped and I have to get to them. We didn't seem to catch as many "photo worthy" fish this winter. I'll post them here when the winter pictures are finally up. Still I went fishing in open water on a stream so its time to get off of the ice fishing logs.
Went and looked at a couple of the tributaries running into the Big-Su with Doug. Well most of them were open but many still had lots of ice. Taking a good hard look at a few of the streams, it definitely looked as though it held fish, but we failed to catch any. The water is still very low, with only fingers of the Big-Su open from ice. I've heard that people were catching fish somewhere on the Su but I didn't see much action. It will only get better from here to the end of May. I'm definitely taking another look next weekend.
Well, amazingly enough the only fish of the day came on the ice. Stopped by a friend's house and he wanted to go hit a lake in the Big lake area. The lake had lots of overflow, but still over 2 feet of solid clear ice. We managed only 2 pan sized dollies and a mini - rainbow. Still it was kinda cool to be able to ice fish one more time.
The emphasis until the Kings show in Late May or early June will be the Rainbows, Dollies, and grayling on the Big -su tributaries.
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