I don’t want to burst anybody’s bubble, but fishing in Alaska is not always a wilderness experience. If you’re on the road system and salmon are in the streams, you’re bound to have plenty of company.
Surprisingly, the vast majority of all participants get along just fine. I find having the right attitude is essential. First of all, I start with the mindset that I won’t be fishing alone. Second, when I treat people the way I want be treated, I rarely have any conflict.
Not everyone is comfortable fishing elbow to elbow, or shoulder to shoulder. If you’re one of them my advice is simple: don’t fish during banker’s hours.
Dan Meyer and I got up at 3am to make the one hour drive from Kenai to the Russian River. Plenty of fish and very few people. It was definitely worth the extra effort.
But, if getting up at 3am to go fishing is not your idea of a fun vacation in Alaska, there are other ways to avoid crowds.
- Fish one of our 3 million lakes. It is the most under utilized fishery in the state. But beware, the fish that inhabit the lakes are much smaller than what swims in the rivers and ocean.
- Stay at a remote lodge off the road system.
- Fish the ocean. There’s a lot of water out there and crowds are seldom a problem.
- Focus on trout, not salmon, when fishing the road system.
- Come to Alaska in May or October. Fishing can be very good before the peak of the visitor season begins and after it ends.
- Winter. That’s right, come in the winter. Between ice fishing, and ocean fishing for feeder king salmon, you’ll experience all the solitude you want.
We’re less than three months away from joining crowds like you see in the photo above. If you bring the right attitude, and your own rock to stand on, you’ll be good to go. I hope to see you on the water.