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Angler's Alibi: Extrodinary Alaska Fishing on the Alagnak River

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Early on an Alaskan morning, the cirrus clouds catch the first rays of sunlight as it bleeds across the sky in a kaleidoscope of pinks and oranges. On a slow morning breeze there is a hint of coffee, muffins, and breakfast. The murmur of the river and the activity around camp single the start of the day. The Alagnak River offers world class fly fishing and today we fish the tidal waters of the Alagnak River. It is here that the Chinook, or King Salmon enter the river in search of their spawning ground. It is here that both their journey, and yours begins.

Breakfast is no small affair at the Angler's Alibi. Chef Ben knows how to feed a crew of hungry guides and fishermen. Roll out the Eggs Benedict or the Breakfast Burrito's loaded with smoked Salmon, eggs and cream cheese. Chef Ben has your back. This is lip smacking, rib-sticking food that will power your morning. Six out of Five star food is what you get from Chef Ben, and he performs on this level all day every day. Your only jobs of the morning are to eat and fish.

Sunrise over Angler's Alibi on the Alagnak River
Sunrise over Angler's Alibi on the Alagnak River

Guide Ratio for Outstanding Fishing Adventures

The ratio of guests to guides is 2:1. One thing that stands out at Angler's Alibi is the high caliber of the guides. These are experienced professionals-- fishermen who know the river, know the fish, and know how to make your fishing adventure the best seven days of your life. They have a patient and tried technique for guiding that fits wonderfully with master fishermen or those who are just experiencing the thrill of fly fishing. Angler's Alibi supplies top quality rods, flies and fishing gear that is appropriate for freshwater Salmon, trout, char, pike and other local species.

Fishing Gear and Packing Lists for Your Alaskan Fishing Trip

Speaking of gear, they issue high-quality Sage, and TFO fly rods or Echo Spey rods paired with TFO or Abel reels. They supply everything you need to fish except waders. Breathable waders work best, and you can pair those with a nice neutral colored waterproof jacket. They do an outstanding job of providing you with flies and tackle without hidden charges or fees. If you want to bring special equipment or flies, you may, but this is truly an all inclusive lodge and they supply everything at no extra charge. Remember the more you bring the less fish you take back.

There is a washer and dryer on site so there is no need to pack all your clothes with you. The Alaska weather offers a range of possibilities, and it is likely you will hit all of them on some days. The temperatures range from 55 degrees Fahrenheit all the way to the mid-eighties. Layers with base layers of wool or synthetic wool are key. Good items to include are fingerless gloves and a warm hat. Read the complete packing list offered by Anglers Alibi.

Local Species of Freshwater Fish and Monstrous Trophies

The Alagnak River, like many rivers in Alaska, is rich in fish. All five species of Salmon make their way up the Alagnak River. In addition to the rich Salmon runs, the Alagnak, and surrounding rivers, creeks and tributaries are also home to Rainbow Trout, arctic grayling, and arctic char. The timing of your trip is focused by those fish that are in their peak run. If you have a specialty fish, such as the beautiful arctic grayling, then your guide will set you up to fulfill your quest. The staff at Angler's Alibi make every reasonable accommodation to each of their guests and their fishing requests. That may be a fly out trip to catch trophy sized Rainbow Trout or to request a specific guide. Guides are rotated throughout your stay so that you have access to a wealth of fishing knowledge that then entire crew possesses.

Got to love July King Salmon fishing at Angler's Alibi
Got to love July King Salmon fishing at Angler's Alibi

The Red Salmon: From early June the Sockeye Salmon begin their freshwater quest. Sockeye or red Salmon, are one of the best Salmon for eating. It is especially incredible in Chef Ben's sushi. The Sockeye run peaks from the end of June through the middle to later part of July.

The King Salmon: The Chinook Salmon begin their run in the later part of June. Their season peaks in mid July but remains strong throughout the whole month.

The Tiger Salmon: AKA Chum Salmon, also a wonderful eating fish, begins its run during the first week of July and then peaks from the second week through the first part of August.

The Pink Salmon: The Humpback Salmon begin their run in mid to late July and peak through the second and third week of August. Note Pink Salmon only run every other year on even years (2010, 2012, 2014, etc).

The Silver Salmon: The Coho begin their run at the end of July and Peak multiple times during the entire month of August, and can be fished for well into September.

Beginning Your Fishing Adventure

After breakfast, you are guided to a pristine fishing destination where Salmon are the primary targets. The record King Salmon at Angler's Alibi weighed in at 65 pounds. Each summer a guest fisherman is lucky enough to hook and land a king over 50 pounds. According to Captain John Perry, the owner of Angler's Alibi, most King Salmon caught here average between 25-30 pounds. Guests are taken by boat or plane to the fishing destination. That may include a jet boat trip up the Alagnak River to the braided system where Salmon spawn. There are many different fishing habitats presented along the Alagnak River. The deeper channels are where you find the rainbows, char and grayling. They are there to feast on Salmon roe.

Fly Out Fishing to Pristine Waters
Fly Out Fishing to Pristine Waters

Captain John's Favorite Fishing Spots and Flies to Consider

If you ask Captain John about his favorite rivers to fish locally, you will get a good story. Other than the Alagnak, he will tell you about the world famous Moraine Creek where the trout average 22 inches in length. Here, fishermen easily fight up to 20 rainbow trout a day. That may sound like a fishing story, but in these fish rich waters it becomes reality. He will likely mention Contract Creek too, which is awesome. Here the grayling and char are thick. Char are beautiful and fun to fish. They are like hand painted Brook trout, only much larger than your average Brook trout. A good size char weighs in at just over 4 pounds, and their beauty is just incredible.

The grayling are amazing fish as well and will readily take a dry fly in the slower water compared to where the char and rainbow reside. Both species will take an egg imitation. The best are actually hand painted plastic beads by the guides that duplicate the real thing better than any hand tied fly. The best flies that rainbows, char, and grayling hit vary a lot depending on what time of year you are fishing. In June, before the salmon arrive, target rainbows with mice on top, or leaches swung deep. Black and white Dolly Llamas work well as do the Morrish mouse patterns. Both trout and char will hit the mouse patterns so Captain John will have you using a lot of them! The grayling will hit darker dry flies like black caddis and darker Adams flies. Green drakes and Red Quills work great too! Once the salmon hit the river systems, and the spawn begins, it is all about egg imitations. The salmon flies that Captain John recommends are basically all shades of pink. Sure, you will use Chartreuse and blue flies for Kings, Red and Orange, but the number one color in Bristol Bay for salmon is PINK. Fuchsia, bright pink, bubble gum pink, and hot pink are all staples in any of the guides fly boxes. And remember, Angler's Alibi supplies all the flies at no extra charge.

Arctic Char caught with Angler's Alibi
Arctic Char caught with Angler's Alibi

Lunch Break and Recharging

By lunchtime, Chef Ben has created something masterful, such as Lobster Bisque soup to re-power your fishing adventure. Guests have a selection of outstanding lunch fare, and Chef Ben puts variety in what is offered. Fishing for nine hours every day for a week can be hard on the body. The guides are masters at allowing guests to set the fishing pace. It is perfectly okay to fish from camp where the water is also rich in Salmon.

Fishing and Packing Fish to Take Home

Guests are allowed to keep 50 pounds worth of Salmon, which is the limit for most ice chests. There is a semi-catch and release policy that helps to keep the fishery in prime shape. All female kings are released as are King Salmon that weigh over 40 pounds. The reason is not to deprive guests of fish they have caught, but instead to keep the wild King Salmon population as rich as possible for future guests. The fish you just released might well be the relative of a fish that a guest released two, three, or even four years ago. There is plenty of fish to be caught along the Alagnak River, and the smaller males are just perfect for eating. The result is that over time the fish population grows larger each spawn. It's a win, win. You eat a lot of what you catch while you are here.

Down Time, Late Afternoon Fishing and Stories

Once back at the camp, guests and guides can continue to fish at their leisure. There is plenty to do around camp, and the waters here make for excellent fishing. The remoteness of the lodge is one of its many perks. The camp is surrounded by an electric fence which keeps the bears from wandering through in the night. The accommodations are rustic, country living. Guests are housed in comfortable tent cabins that feature wooden floors and carpeting. There is 24/7 electricity and hot water. The Weatherport cabins are designed for the Alaskan weather and each has its own thermostatically controlled heater. There is daily laundry service, and each tent cabin receives daily maid service too. The camp is outfitted with a phone, and there is a satellite phone taken on all outings. The setting is rustic, but the living is good. This is a place that rivals the luxury lodges for services, guest satisfaction, which is proven by their 90+ percent guest return rate. Cost + Service + Fishing Expertise = highly satisfied guests.

The focus at Angler's Alibi is fishing, and that includes the finest guest service available. The food here is beyond five star quality. The guides are at the top of their game. The camp is quite, comfortable and sits along an amazing stretch of Alaskan Wilderness. There are no roads. You won't hear cars or trucks. You fly in via float plane and you fish for monstrous fish in a beautiful setting.

Relaxing, Reliving, and Tomorrow Schedule

By Dinner, you are probably worn out and you might feel like your casting arm is six inches longer than your reeling arm. It is a good time to sit around and share the fishing stories of the day. The guides have stories too that are highly entertaining. This is also an excellent time to talk about what you want to do the next day. The lodge and staff are very interested in your fishing desires. Chef Ben's work wafts through the air. The mouthwatering aromas of perfectly prepared prime rib or pork loin and homemade bread are second only to the meal itself. His slow cooker method with smoked meats makes you want to stay forever. It is the perfect end to a long day of fishing.

Beautiful Alaskan Sunset to end the day at Angler's Alibi
Beautiful Alaskan Sunset to end the day at Angler's Alibi

The Value of an Angler's Alibi Fishing Trip

Angler's Alibi is a fishing camp. It may not seem glamorous, but it is spectacularly comfortable, and the hosting here is six-star caliber. They offer guests 3, 5, or 7 days and nights of fishing for unbelievable prices. A 7-night fishing trip for 2015 is listed at $4,900 per person. Combined with the services, location and the quality of the guides you could easily spend $12,000 per person at other lodges. There is a lot of value here, which is why 90+ percent of their guest return. Some guests come back year after year. That says something about the quality and value of what Angler's Alibi offers its guests.

You have to fly into Anchorage and hop a plane to King Salmon, for which you pay for on your own. It is easy to arrange a connection flight to King Salmon. You then take a float-plane charter from King Salmon to Angler's Alibi and the cost of that is included in your package. They also supply you with all of the fishing gear, Sage rods and flies without added cost. You have daily housekeeping for your comfortable tent cabin and daily guided fishing expeditions. You will need to bring your toiletries and your own special alcohol, waders and cold weather gear. They supply good beer and quality wines to their guests. They do not supply you with an Alaska Fishing License, and you should order that Online at least a month before your trip. The cost of your stay does not include gratuities, but that is standard at every Alaskan lodge. The longer you stay, the more affordable your trip is. A three night trip for 2015 books at $3,000 whereas you are only paying $1,900 for four additional nights with the seven night trip. Stay, enjoy, fish, and dream of coming back. Thats what you get at Angler's Alibi.

Angler's Alibi Contact Information

Angler's Alibi Website:
Summer Phone (June to August): 907-246-1510
Fall/Winter/Spring Phone (Sept to May): 561-222-9416

Visit for the most up to date pricing information and to inquire about booking your Alaska fishing vacation with Angler's Alibi email

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