The Kvichak River is the spill water from Lake Iliamna and winds and turns for about 50 miles where it empties into Kvichak Bay. This is Southwestern Alaska and a river that produces Trophy Rainbow Trout. "Trophy" in this case is 30-inches or above and that is a fish that you don't see every day and that makes Trophy Rainbow Trout something majestic.
Beyond the Majestic
The Kvichak River is home to all five species of Pacific Salmon from the big King Salmon to the little Pink Salmon, they come, spawn, and die here. Salmon are the lifeblood or fuel that drives many of the Alaskan cycles from the bear and eagles to the humans, to the many of species of fish that live here. It is a vast food web that is often unnoticed but is the reason, that the Kvichak River produces trophy Rainbow Trout - A rarity even in Alaska.
When to Fish the Kvichak River
The Rainbows are here all year long, as are the Arctic Grayling, Dolly Varden, and Char. Between the summer feast that is the Salmon, the fish feed on many things including insects, smaller fish, small mammals, and rodents. The river has a way of providing and that is important if you want to produce big trophy fish.
June and July - Early in June King Salmon begin their run which can last through July. They are followed shortly by the Sockeye Salmon which begin to flood the river. The Kvichak River is home to the world's largest run of Sockeye Salmon.
Where there are King Salmon there are Trophy Rainbow Trout and Dolly Varden. Expect to have the option of fishing for Kings, Reds, Rainbows, Dolly Vardens, Arctic Char, and Grayling during June and July.
August, September, October -The Sockeye and Kings are mostly gone by August. In their place come the Silver Salmon, the Chum Salmon, and the Pink Salmon. The biomass - flesh of the dead salmon, roe, and increased presence of aquatic insects - creates a feeding frenzy that draws the secondary fish into the river from the Lake Iliamna and tributaries. It is that excessive amount of food that helps make the Kvichak River a place where "trophy" is not just a marketing word, but a way of life.
The Kvichak River is home to Trophy Rainbow Trout, Big Northern Pike, big Dolly Varden, and Big Arctic Char. It is also the home of the small Arctic Grayling and in such a place where food is so abundant, even the Grayling are big. You can find these fish here all year long. They are part of the cycle that depends on the influx of Salmon.