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Guy M 09-14-2008 06:10 PM

Alaska Silvers

Just returned from Alaska. Fished the Tsiu River for silvers. Great trip!

Guy M 09-14-2008 07:47 PM

Re: Alaska Silvers

mcnerney 09-14-2008 07:50 PM

Re: Alaska Silvers
What outfitter did you go with?


Frank Whiton 09-14-2008 07:54 PM

Re: Alaska Silvers
Hi Guy,

Thanks for the pictures. I really enjoy any pictures of Alaska. Did you stay at a lodge or do it your self? Silvers are my favorite Salmon to catch.


jose 09-14-2008 08:40 PM

Re: Alaska Silvers
Brings back memories of my Alaska trip. I wish I had been fly fishing back then. I was a spin rod man back in those days- still a great time, but I would love to fly fish silvers on a a fly. Congratulations on your trip. What wt rods did you use?

Guy M 09-14-2008 09:05 PM

Re: Alaska Silvers
We stayed at the very nice lodge run by Alaskan Wilderness Outfitters.

Alaskan Wilderness Outfitting Company ~ Alaska Fishing and Wilderness Adventures

Tom and Katie are very gracious hosts and Dan really knows the river. Weather shortened our stay - we couldn't get out to the Tsiu River from Cordova for a couple of days because of weather. Dan put us on silvers all day long. The last afternoon we fished was remarkable. I believe I hooked and released about 15 - 20 salmon, most in the 10 - 13 pound range. Dad and a friend of ours each landed several in the 15 - 18 pound range.

Mostly we used 8wt rods. I used a St. Croix Legend Ultra, a good rod that I bought years ago for these silvers. It's also worked out well on our Washington steelhead. Mostly I used a sink tip line and a 15# leader - not tapered. A green & white Clouser was a good one in deeper, faster water. A Popsicle worked great in more shallow water.

If I was going to do it myself, I'd bring two good tents. One for the food, and another, well away from the food tent, for sleeping. A good weatherproof tent would be necessary. It rains and blows like crazy there. I'd also take the bear threat seriously, and would bring a big flashlight, bear spray and a powerful firearm. During the day we had no problems at all with the bears, but at night they prowl that river... I'd also locate my camp well away from the river.

I snapped a couple of photos of one near the mouth:

Regards, Guy

Frank Whiton 09-15-2008 08:58 AM

Re: Alaska Silvers
Hi Guy,

Thanks for the information. I camped all over Alaska and it was always at night that the bears paid their visit. We used a 10' x 12' A-wall tent with a sheep herder stove for heat. We cooked in the same tent and never had a bear problem. I do remember one bear hunt that a bear came right up to the outside of our tent. We were in a two man tent at our spike camp. There was a snow patch just out side of our tent that we were using for water. We got up in the morning and a bear had walked right across the snow patch. We never heard a thing. If a bear wanted to get us in that little tent all he had to do was step on us.

Its interesting that on our first bear hunt we wouldn't go to the creek out side of a cabin without a gun. We eventually got to a point that we could sleep through a bear just a few feet from our tent. Brown Bears don't make any effort to be quiet.

Frank Whiton 09-15-2008 09:08 AM

Re: Alaska Silvers
Hi Guy,

How did your Orvis reel work for you? Is that the Trout model?


Guy M 09-15-2008 10:49 AM

Re: Alaska Silvers
Frank - my father bought that reel six or seven years ago for my oldest son, for a trip to the same river. I think it was the only large arbor reel Orvis sold then, and it's a size "V" to handle fair size line. Generally I use a Ross Cimarron reel on my 8wt rod, but decided to borrow my son's reel for this trip, mostly because I hadn't used it much and wanted to evaluate it.

On the good side - a fellow can reel in a fair bit of line in a hurry, which is nice when the silver is headed towards ya!

On the minus side - perhaps we put a little too much line/backing on the reel. Time to time when reeling in, I'd feel some resistance as the line wrapping around the spool got piled up too thick and made contact with the reel.

The drag worked fine. I was able to set it light to strip out line for casting, and then tighten it back up for fighting those 12+ pounders intent on zipping back to the surf! Those things took me into the backing a time or two when I had the drag set too light.

You're right about the bears. This is my fourth "vacation" to Alaska, since I first went there in the 1970's, backpacking. Love the place and wish I could go more often. They are a factor, but by and large they tend to leave people alone. At least if you keep a clean camp, and don't attract 'em with gut piles or dead fish or whatever... In my several trips there only one bear, a modest size black bear, gave us any trouble. He came into camp one night and banged around all the pots and pans we'd left near the campfire/cookfire. We never had any trouble with the big brownies while backpacking or fishing. Time to time one will get interested in a splashing salmon, but just letting out more line, and letting the fish get out into deeper water seems to cause the bear to lose interest.

When hiking/backpacking, I've tied bells to my pack and tend to talk/sing while hiking. I do that a lot anyway and it keeps the bears from being surprised by your sudden appearance. I know folks who get all worked up about the bears, but really, if ya don't bother them, and don't tempt them with easy food, they don't generally bother people.

Fishing sure is good up there... Know anything about the "Good News River" ??? A fellow I was talking to told me it was a great place for a 10-day float trip and a lot of trout fishing.

Regards, Guy

AKGuide 04-24-2009 01:13 AM

Re: Alaska Silvers

The Goodnews is an excellent river for silvers as are many other waters in that part of Southwest Alaska. If you have any questions about that area or others I have been guiding float trips up here since the mid 80's. That said whatever location you choose I am sure you will have a great time as long as you are with good friends and come for the experience.

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