Jan – April 2010


Wishing you a happy new year and good fishing in 2010.


Our busy season for summer 2010 bookings is upon us. Last weekend we ran a booth and gave presentations at the Mat-Su Outdoorsman`s Show. On April 10 and 11,2010 I will be presenting the seminar, Clobber Salmon WIth Bobbers and Bait, at the Great Alaska Sportsman`s Show in the V. I. P. Lounge starting at 7 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday evening. Stop by and see the presentation or give us a call to book your guided Alaska Salmon Fishing trip for the summer of 2010. We currently have good availability on many dates — although June king salmon dates are filling rapidly. Give us a call at 907-746-2199 to make your reservation while prime dates and times are still available.


I drove to Eklutna Tailrace and looked at the Knik River system along the way. The river still has plenty of ice chunks and will likely take a couple weeks to look appealing to incoming salmon. I mad my trip about 9 p.m. this evening and while crossing the Palmer Hay Flats i managed to spot 6 moose out browsing along the route. Daylight hours are growing longer quickly now, and Alaskans are excited about and getting ready for the fast approaching summer. Ducks and swans have been around for more than a week now, and I expect to see geese flying and feeding in the valley before long.


Today I saw geese flying in the Mat-Su Valley for the first time this year — and several different groups of them too. Usually I see them about 4 days earlier, but this year all I had seen was ducks and trumpeter swans– until now. We`ve enjoyed some warmer weather the past couple days, and the remaining snow on the valley floor is melting quickly now. On tonight`s TV weather report it was mentioned that temperatures reached the mid 60`s in Fairbanks and other interior Alaska locations, so I`m hoping this trend continues and I can get my boats out for some check out runs within the next couple weeks. Ice on the local lakes has looked rotten enough that I have not wanted to venture out on them for a while, so my main point — even though I have not fished lately, is that spring is progressing rapidly in Alaska, and I`m thinking I`ll likely have a boat in the water and could be fishing for king salmon by the week starting May 10.


May Special Salmon Charter — in anticipation of our upcoming salmon fishing, we`ve decided to run a special early bird rate for May king salmon fishing trips. This will be our standard 6 hour trip and in addition we`ll provide each angler a complimentary Fishtale t-shirt. This represents a  value in savings over our normal prices. We will provide this same special offer and pricing for all guests who previously made reservations with us on May 2010 king salmon trips.

If you would like to fish for large May king salmon, or are having difficulty waiting for summer to arrive, why not join us as we fish for fresh-from-the ocean king salmon, at a time when we can fish multitudes of holes with little competition from other anglers.

Make your reservation today. Simply fill out and submit the reservation form on the PRICES page of this website (mention this special offer) and we`ll take you out in one of our customized boats to some of our prime early season fishing spots. For best selection of prime dates contact us now — or you may also call us at 907-746-2199. Looking forward to fishing with you, soon!


Snow? Yes, we got a new layer of white yesterday afternoon, but it is rapidly melting once again today. The paved roads had already soaked up enough spring heat that the snow seemed to melt as soon as it fell on them, but we got perhaps a couple inches of accumulation on the yard. I expect most of the new stuff will be gone by evening, and a couple weather reports I`ve seen are calling for lots of sunshine and temperatures about 50 degrees tomorrow.

Many people are familiar with the saying that April showers bring May flowers — I am hoping for our own slightly different version — that April snow flurries bring flurries of May king salmon storming into Mat-Su Rivers. After all, as the snow melts, a little extra runoff should only help draw eager kings into our streams. As a side note, I did see open water where ice is starting to melt away from the shorelines on a couple valley lakes in the past few days.

Like usual for the start of a new year, I`ve got new tackle items I`m hoping will ratchet up our catch rates during the coming summer, and we`ve restocked old standbys as well. Most of the old standbys are listed on the Lures and Tackle page of this website. Give us a call if you`d like to be one of our first guests to fish our new gear on one of our May king salmon charters — 907-746-2199.


Open Water Salmon FIshing — 1st trip of year

I drove with two of my nephews to Eklutna Tailrace and we casted #4 Flashtrap Spinners for a while this evening. The snow out way that has melted considerably in the past week, but there is still a layer of the white stuff over next to Pioneer Peak. The water was extremely clear with hardly any flow coming out of the power plant while we were there. You could see into the water very well, and although we spotted lures other anglers had lost on snags along the bottom, we did not see any fish or get any bites. On the trip back home we spotted 6 moose as we drove across Palmer Hay Flats. We also saw ducks and geese on the trip back to the less white side of the valley.

The earliest I`ve ever gone salmon fishing in a Mat-Su Valley river for ocean run fish and had success was on April 27, 2006 — when I caught a silver salmon at Eklutna Tailrace. The trip this evening was my one attempt this year at breaking that record — looks like it will have to wait for another year now. The other comment that I would make is that spring still seems a bit later this year — in 2006 when I caught that salmon there was no snow remaining near the tailrace, and this year there is still plenty along the banks (although it was melting rapidly this evening when we were there). The tailrace and river channel for as far as we could see looking downstream was ice free, however when we crossed the Glenn Highway bridge both coming and going across there was still a good bit of ice chunks floating in the lower Knik River.

It was fun to test out some new tackle and cast for a while this evening. It would have been nice to catch, hook, or even see a salmon — but when you are fishing this early in search of a record — this is mostly the result.

One final comment is that the Kepler – Bradley Lakes along the highway are still ice covered with a slightly larger section of open water along some of the sides. The ice is getting considerably darker however, and looking rotten. A good stiff wind would likely take most of that ice off those lakes in short order — but the weather report for the next several days only calls for slight or moderate wind. Still, additional open water fishing and boating opportunities are fast approaching.



I`ve been keeping a close watch on the local ice covered Mat-Su Valley lakes, and thinking that the ice cover should be coming off the lakes much faster than has been the case so far. Well, finally tonight, I noticed we finally got the one factor we had been missing — a good stout wind. I don`t know how long it will blow tonight, but if it last all or most of the night my prediction is that all or most of the Kepler – Bradley Lakes near Palmer should be ice free or nearly ice free by morning. People have been getting out and fishing along the ice free edges of the lakes for a few days now, but it is looking to me that they should be able to fish mostly open water by tomorrow.

I also heard a couple reports that Sustina RIver tributary streams between Willow and Talkeetna are starting to open up. Water may be high in some streams, but open water trout anglers should have a plethora of waters to choose from by this coming first weekend in May.

I had two reports today and yesterday, that some of the larger rivers were still ice covered — but it looks to me like even the ice on and along the larger river should start breaking up and flowing downstream very soon — and I would expect most of it to be gone by the second weekend in May.

I also had a report on Little Su Access Road which goes to the Little Susitna River Public Use Facility campground and boat launch on the lower Little Susitna River. Word is that the road is wet and tore up from early season vehicle traffic at this time. I like my expensive boats and vehicles too much to drive to the river under the present conditions, but with some more warm weather, conditions should improve rapidly.

If ice breaks up on Finger Lake, I hope to get my boats out for lake checkout runs in the coming week, after which it will be on to the rivers for some early season salmon fishing with the mobility of a boat to greatly increase the chances of finding one of the first early season king salmon..


I drove to Eklutna Tailrace and cast a #4 silver Flashtrap Spinner in hopes of catching a king salmon near the morning high tide, but while it was an enjoyable sunny morning, I did not see any fish. On the drive across the Palmer Hay Flats in the morning I spotted a couple moose.

I also looked at the Kepler-Bradley Lakes a couple times today, and while the ice has speeded up it`s melting and considerably more water is now ice free — I was definitely a bit overly optimistic in my assessment last night that all or most of the Kepler – Bradley lakes would be ice free this morning. What I saw today was that Echo Lake was mostly ice free, but while Kepler Lake and Bradley Lake both had more fishable water today, most of those lakes were still iced over. I also stopped by Matanuska Lake, and there was a large patch of open water near the point on the far side of the lake. There are now some real open water fishing opportunities, and the amount of open water continues to increase on a daily basis.