Oct. — Dec. 2014 Alaska Fishing Reports

I ‘ve winterized and stored our guide boats for the season and plan to start guiding open water salmon fishing trips again in May or 2015..  For those interested in open water salmon fishing this may be a good time to schedule your open water Alaska fishing trip for the summer of 2015.  You can place a reservation on this website or give us a call for more information at 907-746-2199.     SCROLL DOWN TO A DATE FOR OUR LATEST FISHING REPORT UPDATE

Winter Ice Fishing

I like the ice to get several inches thick before I start guiding ice fishing trips for rainbow trout, Arctic char, and landlocked salmon.  Most of these fish range up to 12 inches in length with a few  “lunkers” over 20 inches.  Depending upon weather and ice conditions it is often mid or late November before I start guiding ice fishing trips.  If you would like to scheduled an ice fishing trip — please call at 907-746-2199.


December 31, 2014 — Last Ice Fishing Trip of the Season — after today see our 2015 Fishing Reports for the next update.     Conditions were warm and rainy with more water on top of the ice today.   My two guests started fishing in 3 holes near shore where the trip from the day before had only managed to catch 2 fish.     What a difference a day can make as today my guests caught between 40 — 50 fish from those same holes.    Although we fished in two other locations around the lake all of the guests’ fish were caught at the first spot we fished.   They caught a good mix of landlocked salmon, Arcitic Char, and rainbow trout.  Like usual all of our fish were caught on Pautzke Balls O’ Fire single salmon eggs fished about a foot above the bottom.  We even saw a couple eagles briefly during the trip — but the eagles were much more reluctant to fly around in the rainy conditions than under normal dryer winter conditions.   For anyone wondering the ice now seems to be about a foot thick and even though we’ve had three days of warm weather the ice remains solid on the lake we were fishing.

December 30 — ICE FISHING TRIP

I guided 3 people who caught mostly landlocked salmon and Arctic Char, but also landed one rainbow trout.   Once again we saw bald eagles near us during the trip.   The fish were biting rather lightly today, but the group still managed to catch a substantial number of fish, many of which they released.   A couple larger Arctic char may have measured about 14 inches, and all other fish were smaller.    Weather was unusually warm today — between 48 – 50 degrees on my vehicle thermometer while I was waiting for the group to show up to start the trip.   Conditions were icy and slick with a considerably amount of standing water on top of the lake ice.

December 29 — Strong Winds in AM — Cancelled ice fishing trip for the day.   I gave my group the choice of fishing or not —- but thought it would likely be a fairly miserable day to be ice fishing.    After getting out later in the day — when the wind had died down somewhat I wondered if perhaps we should have fished.

December 28 — ICE FISHING TRIP

I guided a group of 6 guests each of whom caught fish.   They were mostly catch and releasing fish, but also kept about 5 larger Arctic Char and 1 rainbow trout.   In addition they caught many more landlocked salmon, Arctic Char, and rainbow trout which they released.   All of the fish were caught on Pautzke’s Green Label Ballls O’ Fire single salmon eggs fished about a foot above the bottom.  During the trip we saw eagles nearby for most of the time we were fishing.

December 22 — ICE FISHING TRIP

I went ice fishing with my brother-in-law, his son, and a friend.    We fished near Palmer and the ice was about 6 – 8 inches thick.   Seemed plenty strong for walking on, but still easy to drill holes quickly.   We drilled holes in several different spots and caught a total of about 20 fish — mostly small king salmon, but also some small rainbow trout, and a couple Arctic Char.    Most of the fish were about 9 inches in lenghth, but the largest char was 21 inches.   We caught all of the fish on Pautzke’s Balls O’ Fire single salmon eggs.   During the trip we saw a pair of bald eagles watching us fish from their perch in some tress beside the late.


I fished with my wife, Frede, , and her sister, Kathy,  out of Kona Hawaii with  Captain Kenny Fogarty of Makana Lani Charters, and we teamed up to catch and release an estimated 400 pound blue marlin.  The captain did an excellent job of keeping our lines in the water and fishing for the entire trip — infact at the time the big fish hit, we were fishing on overtime as we headed back to the harbor.   We were fishing with big time tackle – huge reels filled with 130 pound like and 500 pound leaders and a fighting chair.  Even so, when the fish hit, then started jumping and running, the reel was running low on line by the time I was strapped in the fighting chair and the other trolling lines were pulled clear.   After the initial run the fish dove, but the Kenny did an excellent job running the boat and using the current so we could pull the fish back up and release it in a relatively short 45 minutes.  After the fight and returning to the harbor, I can easily say I’ve never been so sore from fighting a fish — especially my shoulders and legs, and I’d also formed a blister on my thumb from hard cranking the fish every time I needed to gain some line.    Frede and Kathy were taking pictures during the battle, but as the fish neared the boat and Kenny was attempting to tag and release it, he had Frede assist with running the boat.   Truly a team effort, and quite a thrill.    Although, Frede, Kathy, and I were hoping to catch some fresh fish for dinner, this marlin was not it — definitely much too large for us to put to good use.   Yes, the captain could have had us keep the fish and then sold it and made some immediate money — but I applaud his thinking more long term with a catch and release policy.   These are fish in limited supply, and by releasing it we all hope to ensure  wonderful thrills for additional anglers and do our part to keep the population viable.  When we reached the harbor, we learned ours was the only charterboat, to that point, to have landed a blue marlin out of Kona on December 13.   Through hard work and persistence, the captain made at least a portion of our “luck.”      We also shared in a prayer with the captain, where he had asked for a safe trip and expressed our desire to catch fish before the start of the trip.   Lots of good instruction, both before and after the hook up.   A class act.

October 5, 2014 — This afternoon I drove to Eklutna Tailrace in an attempt to catch some late season hatchery silver salmon.  I saw quite a few dark salmon rolling, and caught 6 silver salmon and lost 1 other one right near the bank.   All of the fish were caught while casting a #3 silver / black Flashtrap Spinner.  I super slow retrieve was key to getting the bites.   Although I enjoyed hooking and battling all of the fish, they were dark enough that I released them all without removing them from the water.   While at the tailrace I saw 3 trumpeter swans in a pond of to the side, and also saw a cow and calf moose that were crossing the tailrace just upstream from me.  There were also some ducks at the tailrace, and on the trips driving to and from the tailrace I saw a sandhill crane and a good sized flock of Canadian geese in a farm field.    It was a most enjoyable way to spend the afternoon.

October 9, 2014 — Building More Custom Fishing Rods

Over the past couple winters I’ve built several custom fishing rods for guests’ use on my summer charter boat trips.   After a couple years of experimenting I’ve got a couple different fishing rods dialed in to a very refined level.   With that in mind, I’ve ordered component parts to build about a dozen different rods over the winter.  I’ll be focusing on building a set of bobber / bait drifting rods for use on both king salmon and silver salmon charters.   In addition, I plan to build light and sensitive custom spinning rods specifically for casting lures for silver salmon — they will cast well, and be a joy to fish for anglers who enjoy “touch,” casting and extra sensitivity to dial in their lure presentations.