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Old 09-17-2013, 10:17 AM
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Default Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

Well I made it back from Alaska in one piece. First off, Alaska is unreal. Having lived in the west for over half my life, it was still like nothing I've ever seen. The mtns are so much bigger and the fishing was unbelievable. It was almost depressing having to come back to Bozeman which is a world class destination for most. Anyway, here are a couple photos/vids.

The Yakutat airport. This was an Air Force Installation back during WWII so it is a little unusual as most small towns in AK do not have an 8000' runway that can accommodate 737 jets. It was pretty convenient getting in and out of Yakutat. Oh and there were only 2 women on the flight up from Seattle.
Click the image to open in full size.


Here is the fly shop. It is located in an old WWII hangar right next to the airport. This place oozes with character.
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Our "cabin." Accommodations were mediocre at best. It is simply a fish camp, nothing more. When we got off the plane, one of the guys I was talking too suggested that we ask the lodge owner for a rental car with floorboards. I didn't really get it until later. Our rental was a 1989 Astrovan that was beat to ****....but it did have a trailer hitch.
Click the image to open in full size.


The view from our cabin. This is the Wrangell-St Elias mtns and National Park. This park is larger than the country of Switzerland at 13.2 million acres. It is also the tallest Coastal mtn range in the world with peaks topping out at over 18,000' (which rises up from sea level.) We only had the view one day as it rained most of the time we were there. The pics certainly do not do it justice.
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Click the image to open in full size.



Now on to some fishing. This is the Situk River where we spent just about all of our time. This is a fish factory known for its Coho Salmon run (Silvers). A couple days before our arrival, they raised limits from 2 to 4 as there were so many fish in the river. The water was also at record high flows our whole time there due to large storms that had moved through right before our arrival. Made for some tough wading but good fishing. Oh and the Situk is also a world class Steelhead fishery.
Click the image to open in full size.


Here is our boat. We had the option of getting a guide but I wanted to see if I could figure out how to catch these fish on my own first...which I did within about a half hour of being on the water. So I played guide for the whole trip.
Click the image to open in full size.


We had our limit usually each day by 10 am. After we got our limit, we pinched barbs and started sport fishing.
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My Dad is not the greatest fisherman on the river but even he slayed 'em. He said it was the best fishing he's ever had.
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Hey mine's bigger:
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One day we decided to wade fish. Still easy money:
Click the image to open in full size.

Catching big fish on streamers. I was in heaven. I bet we caught 150 silvers during our trip.
Click the image to open in full size.

The lodge processed all of our fish for us, which was awesome.
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The finished product. 200 lbs of filets.
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Here was one of the darkest ones we got. He still put up a good fight. It is amazing how powerful these fish are as well as athletic. They jumped, had good runs, and could take you into your backing easily if you let them out into the current.



The last day we were there, I snuck back out to the Situk for a solo session. This fish was actually a foul hooked humpy but I thought it was still worth sharing. Fortunately there were no bears around!


There is so much more about this trip that I simply can't detail in a thread. But this was definitely the best fishing trip I've ever had as well as the best xmas gift ever. And I have just scratched the surface with Alaska. While I may not be able to go back every year, every other year will probably happen. I already miss that place.
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Old 09-17-2013, 10:29 AM
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Lightbulb Re: Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

I think we have Post of the Day going here.
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Old 09-17-2013, 10:33 AM
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Default Re: Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

Sounds like an amazing trip! Thanks for the report. How much did those accommodations cost? I'm wondering what a trip like that would cost me.
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Old 09-17-2013, 10:34 AM
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Default Re: Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

WOW!

You guys hit it right, great report and pictures. After a trip like that you may have a hard time matching it.

Ard
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Old 09-17-2013, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

Quote:
Originally Posted by mridenour View Post
Sounds like an amazing trip! Thanks for the report. How much did those accommodations cost? I'm wondering what a trip like that would cost me.
This particular trip is very affordable. For 4 days, 3 nights basically figure $2k for everything...meals, lodging, rental car, boat rental, tax, tip (airfare not included.)That also includes a fly out for a day or a guided float trip. We couldn't do the fly out due to weather and there was no need to have a guide as I can row and fishing was easy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardyreels View Post
WOW!

You guys hit it right, great report and pictures. After a trip like that you may have a hard time matching it.

Ard
Yep. It has ruined me. I fished the Yellowstone Sunday and was bored. It will take a little while for it to rub off. The coolest thing was getting to share that experience with my dad. That was the first trip to Alaska for both of us.
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Old 09-17-2013, 04:13 PM
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Default Re: Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

Great to hear you guys had such a wonderful trip, you certainly hit the Coho run perfectly!

Larry
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Old 09-17-2013, 06:11 PM
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Default Re: Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

Looks like a fun trip.

That's far too much salmon for one man to carry around...I'd be glad to unburden you to be like..all helpful....and stuff.
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Old 09-17-2013, 06:33 PM
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Default Re: Trip Report - Coho fishing on Situk River - Yakutat, AK

Edit: it was actually 5 days 4 nights. I forgot a day!
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