If you’re planning a fishing trip, Alaska is probably the best place in the world. The Halibut are massive, the salmon gigantic and the trout quite plentiful. For trophy-sized catches, there’s no place like it anywhere in the world. So, read on for some great tips and tricks that will help make your Alaskan fishing trip a success.
Make Your Reservations Early
Alaska is host to over a million tourists every summer. That means the hotels in Anchorage will fill up, the rental car companies will book quickly and the best fishing lodges will be full far in advance. To avoid disappointment and ensure you have the best trip possible, plan ahead and book early.
If you are unable to commit to specific dates well in advance (because of a job or other limitations), you should at least loosely monitor the availability of prefered reservations you will eventually make. If they begin to fill, you might then take the financial plunge and hope for the best with your schedule.
Hire a Local Guide
Most guide books, fishing books and even the state Department of Fish and Game say that if you want to have a successful fishing trip in Alaska, you should hire a local guide. Your guide will be able to take you to the hottest fishing spots, show you secret locations and inform you of the best lures, floats and flies.
For a list of recommended guides or companies, you can contact the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, a travel company like Sport Fishing Alaska (1-888-552-8674) who organize expeditions based on budget, or trust your lodge to provide you with an experienced, on-site guide.
Follow the Fish
Fish may be abundant in Alaska, but they’re also migratory. You need to know the best fishing season and the right locations. So, while a lodge or specific spot may boast some of the best fishing in the world, that may only hold true for a few weeks out of the year. Instead of being disappointed by a slow fishing trip, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game will be able to tell if your proposed location and dates will coincide with a fish migration.
There’s also the secret fishing season in Alaska – the fall. Trout are still running, no one’s around and fly fishers will experience some of the best fishing of their lives. Many river lodges and resorts specialize in an autumn season and even offer heavily discounted rates, saving you money.
When it comes to packing for a fishing trip, Alaska residents will remind you that you need to be prepared for anything – blistering sun, pouring rain or cold nights. With the excitement of a fishing adventure, it is tempting to downplay the need for attention to personal care. But skipping this important step in your preparation can actually ruin an otherwise great trip.
To block the sun, stay warm and fight dampness, you should pack clothes that can be easily layered and will dry quickly if needed. Remember to also pack sunglasses, fishing equipment, sunblock, bug spray, a camera and a small survival kit.