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Gwin's Lodge
  • Approximate Cost:
    6 - 7 Days: $1,000 to $2,000 Per Person
    4 - 5 Days: $1,000 to $2,000 Per Person
    2 - 3 Days: $500 to $1,000 Per Person
  • Type: Lodges
  • Fishing: Fly Fishing Freshwater Fishing Guided Fishing Saltwater Fishing

Gwin's Lodge is a series of 15 cabins that sit along the Kenai River just west of Kenai Lake. The lodge is direct along Highway 1, the Sterling Highway. Getting here is fairly easy and the road, though two-lane is a very pleasurable drive. We flew into Anchorage and then rented a car. It is about a two-hour drive from Anchorage to Cooper Landing. You can also fly into the town of Kenai and rent a car. The drive from Kenai to Gwin's Lodge is about 45-minutes.

The cabins here are well appointed and come with a kitchen, dining area and usually one-bedroom. Cabins sleep up to six guests though there are options for cabins that sleep two or four people. The on-site restaurant serves up awesome food. Expect an awesome fishing adventure. There are an on-site tackle shop and plenty of non-fishing things to do around the area.

Fishing with Gwin's Lodge

The beautiful thing about Cooper Landing is that you are fairly close to some of the most diverse fishing in Alaska. Homer is just a two and a half hour drive. Seward is an hour and a half drive, both are known as legendary places for Halibut fishing. However, this is the upper Kenai River and it is "the" river in Alaska for salmon fishing. In addition to the Kenai River, the Russian River is a ten-minute drive. You are also surrounded by lakes. Lake Kenai is right here, Skilak Lake is just five minutes down the road. The Kenai Wilderness Preserve is here. There is a ton of fishing opportunities right here.

The Fish, The Rivers, and the Guides

This area of the Kenai River has a ton of guides available. However, not all guides are the same quality. There are a few little tricks that help you sort out the good guides from the great guides. A great guide will have three different permits. That is the first thing you want to ask them. They need a Forestry permit, a Kenai Wild Life Refuge Permit, and Fish and Game Permit. This will give you access to all of the best fishing spots along the Kenai River and the Russian River.

Because this is the Upper Kenai River, the fish run just a bit later here. If you want Kings check with your guide. If you want Silvers, Late August through September. If you want Sockeye, June, July, and August. You also want to take some time and fly fish for the trophy rainbow trout that are here. An outstanding guide knows where the King spawning beds are, and that is where the 30-inch trout and the Trophy Dolly Varden will be found.

Overall, you cannot miss with Gwin's Lodge and Cooper Landing.

  • Featured Video of Gwin's Lodge

TripAdvisor® Traveler Rating
  • 134 Reviews
  • LocationLocation
    Sleep QualitySleep Quality
    RoomsRooms
    ServiceService
    ValueValue
    CleanlinessCleanliness
TripAdvisor® Traveler Reviews
Worth a trip
4.0 Star Rating
Reviewed By on October 22, 2018
  • Stopped in for lunch after a day of exploring... restaurant only. We were pleasantly suprised by the friendly waiter and cozy atmosphere. The smoked salmon chowder was disappointing, however, their...
  • Read Full Review
Best smoked salmon chowder south of Cooper Landing
5.0 Star Rating
Reviewed By on September 28, 2018
  • Our new friend Cornelius welcomed us, filled our travel coffee cups, then served us some great smoked salmon chowder. We enjoyed the stop, the tasty chowder, the coffee and the friendly service...
  • Read Full Review
Rustic but not quite charming
2.0 Star Rating
Reviewed By on September 25, 2018
  • The food in the restaurant was good and affordable, however the cabin needed some TLC. It was nice to have a private residence, but it was in need of some major repair (broken windows, loose trim...
  • Read Full Review

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