Ask the Pro's: Father / Son Fishing Trip

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  • I would like to bring my 22 your old son up for a father-son fishing trip. I think that we would like to fish for Sockeye, King and Halibut so freshwater fishing and maybe one or two days of saltwater fishing. I was thinking a 5-7 day trip in May of 2019. How is the fishing & weather that time of year? What areas of Alaska should we look at and any other activities that we should keep in mind to do if we have time?

    - Stephen

  • May is a tough month to accommodate all that you are looking for. Halibut should be good but you will be on the very front end of the Kings and Sockeye don't typically start showing up till second week of June. Weather wise in Alaska is always a crap shoot, like right now, this spring has started out cold and windy. Sometimes May can be really nice though.

    I would probably recommend somewhere around June 11th for your timing honestly, all species you are looking for should be available. We have had a lof of King closures over the last few years, as these runs have been hurting, but this is always subject to each new year. June, typically is good weather.

    As for location, flying in to Anchorage and basing yourself on the Kenai Peninsula (2.5 hrs South) will put you in the center of everything you are looking to catch. If you decide on a 9 day trip, I would recommend a glacier/wildlife tour on a boat out of Seward and I would also recommend heading North of Anchorage to visit Denali as well.

    Anything we can do or lodge/guide recommendations, just let us know.

    Thanks,
    Mike

    Mike Brown - Owner of Mossy's Fly Shop in Anchorage, Alaska
  • Bob,

    I can't think of a better place for a father-son trip than Alaska! So glad you'll be up here! Traditionally, the Sockeye fishing doesn't begin until mid-June with general lulls towards the end of June and a second, much bigger run of fish peaking by late July. As far as King Salmon go, they traditionally begin their migration in mid-May and continue to run in much better numbers through June and July. Kings and Halibut can be targeted in the saltwater in May and it is often a really good time of year to fish for them. The weather this time of year can be unpredictable at times. Though it will be above freezing for the most part, it can turn quickly and range from the 30s up to mid-50s. For the best weather and fishing options, the Kenai Peninsula will probably have the best odds of open rivers and fishable runs.

    Generally speaking, you can have some great fishing experiences and seemingly have the fishing to yourselves this time of year as it doesn't get busy until June when a multitude of anglers begin to make Alaska their destination. You may also find some nice early season specials for a variety of activities. Whale watching and sight-seeing cruises are just starting to go out this time of year and there is a good chance of being some of the first to see humpback whales and killer whales in our Fjords. For travel within the state, the roads will be relatively open, but as you go further north towards denali or other destinations, you may find it can still be snowing, although the drives here on clear days are magnificent. I would suggest, for the best experience, to spend your time on the Kenai Peninsula exploring Cooper Landing, Whittier, Seward and Homer.

    I hope this helps and welcome to Alaska in advance!!

    Dave Lisi - Owner/Guide for Cooper Landing Fishing Guide, LLC located in the small mountain town of Cooper Landing, Alaska where he is a year-round resident, guide, carpenter and trout bum. On any given day, you will most likely find Dave on the banks of the Kenai swinging for trout with his best friend and future wife, Jackie. Cooper Landing Fishing Guide, LLC was built in early 2017 with the goal of sharing the love and passion Dave and Jackie have for the Kenai Peninsula and the fish that live there.
  • First off, you probably won't encounter any Sockeye Salmon in May because those species usually don't appear until early June. King salmon are available in the Kenai River on the Kenai Peninsula south of Anchorage and on some rivers along the Parks Highway north of Anchorage, however. Halibut are available in all the waters outside of Homer, Seward and Kodiak Island. Be sure to get your KingStamp along with your license.

    I recommend buying the "The Milepost" book to help you with other places you might want to stay or see as you travel around. You can get it on Google or in most of the bookstores in Anchorage. There are also very helpful pamphlets in the airport. Be sure to get your licenses and also toget connected with the Alaska Department of Fish & Game, They're very helpful.

    Cecilia "Pudge" Kleinkauf - Cecilia "Pudge" Kleinkauf, known as the owner of Women's Flyfishing, A Trout Unlimited Endorsed Business, has been Alaska's leading woman fly fishing instructor, fly tier, and guide, for over 30 years. Now retired from her Women's Flyfishing guide service, which continues to provide service to fly fishing women as Women's Flyfishing, Alaska LLC, A Trout Unlimited Endorsed Business, Pudge will be fishing (of course) as well as promoting her five books on her new web site, www.pudgekleinkauf.com.
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