Fishing Port Lions

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What makes the northwest end of Alaska’s Kodiak island such a great fishing area?

The protected water between Kodiak, Afognak, and Raspberry Islands holds some of the richest biomass in the world. The plankton growth often makes the crystal clear water appear like a rich broth and it attracts everything from tiny fish to great humpback whales. Fish and sea mammals alike hold here in the tidal waters between these islands because of the unending supply of food. Salt-water fish migrate here to feed and grow. King salmon are here all year long and silver salmon feed in the salt water all summer as they travel to their spawning grounds. Add to this the large number of sparkling streams that each have their own unique salmon and steelhead spawning beds and you have one of the best sportfishing areas in the world. It’s also one of the best places around for an Alaska fishing lodge!

A few words about the fish that swim near the island:

It is heavily populated with halibut, salmon and crab. The fishing season for halibut starts in May and extends through October. Around mid-May, the waters begin to populate with sockeye salmon, with other species of salmon coming shortly after.

Port Lions Lodge:

IMG_4408One of its strongest attractions to Port Lions Lodge, which opened in 1989, is that, unlike other lodges in the area, which typically carry 6 fishermen to a boat, Port Lions Lodge typically limits its boats to 4 fishermen each, except when the guest specifically requests more. There is no question that this increases the quality of the experience. In addition to boats, guests also fish from stream banks and gravel bars and at times even fish while wading in the salt water. Our Alaska Fishing Lodge offers options that no other lodge can. Kodiak Island Fishing Seasons Our season starts in May with the influx of spawning herring followed by giant king salmon and halibut. We fish exclusively out of the boat in May. Shore excursions are added in June to fly fish for sockeye salmon. As the summer goes on we catch fewer of the giant kings but the numbers of the smaller ones goes up. July adds another opportunity as the silvers start to show up in the saltwater. A typical July day can result in a mixed bag of kings, silvers, and halibut from the ocean as well as some pink salmon and Dolly Varden Trout from the streams. In August we start catching the silvers in the streams and rivers. They run right through September. The late summer fishing is great in both the ocean and the streams. Our Fishing Lodge offers an abundance of fishing opportunities paralleled by none other.

Port Lions Lodge Fishing Fleet:

IMG_4254Our new ocean going catamarans are the pride of the fleet. They have lots of deck space for chasing big fish around the boat. They have plenty of cabin room to protect you from the weather. There is a fully enclosed toilet room for privacy. The twin Yamaha four stroke outboards provide fast, quiet transportation as well as efficient trolling. An Alaska Fishing Lodge without Armstrong Catamarans is a sad place indeed! Our boats are equipped with state-of-the-art marine electronics. Fishing gear is updated and carefully maintained. Guides are coast guard licensed and approved with years of experience in safe seamanship and fishing techniques. Book your Alaska Fishing Vacation with us now to ensure you get your desired dates! Fishing Tackle We furnish all the trolling gear, including lures and flies. But you are welcome to bring your favorites along. If you want a salt water king on a fly rod you must bring your own rod and reel. Fly rods must be heavy, I use a 9 1/2 foot 10 weight rod for kings and silvers. You could use something a little heavier for the kings and a little lighter for the silvers, but I think a stiff rod is better. You could catch a 35-40 pound king on an 8 weight rod but it is ultra light and takes lots of time and finesse. Although we furnish spinning gear for the late summer silvers we suggest you bring some of your own lures. Mepps spinners size 4 or 5 in orange, pink, chartreuse or combinations of these colors work well. A ‘pixie’ spoon by Blue Fox with orange, pink or green inserts is a favorite also. The 7/8 oz size is best for long casts. Don’t hesitate to call if you have further questions or want more details.

Tight lines!

Alaska Salmon Fishing… Salmon are not leader shy but their tough mouth and sharp gill plates reek havoc on leaders. I like to tie my own tapered leaders with Mason hard monofilament leader material. I start with 35# and taper it down to 15# in about five or six feet. The tip is approximately 2 feet long and is replaced as it wears out. Sometimes the leader is under 3 feet and still catches fish. You can use almost any commercially packaged tippet material in approximately the same strength and cut it down as it wears out. Silver leaders can be lighter, down to 6 # test. There are lots of good king salmon fly patterns. Here are just a few of my favorites: A Clouser minnow or deceiver tied in green with a #1 or 1/0 hook; leeches tied in black or other colors with a #2 hook (articulated leech is great); egg sucking leeches with pink or orange egg; polar shrimp; large egg cluster patterns in pink and/or orange; and I have a few special flies I like to share also. Flies should be tied with lead eyes or wrapped with lead for weight. A few may be tied lighter for slower shallow water that you fish with sink tip lines. Late summer silver salmon like the same flies so if you are scheduled in August or September these fly guidelines are good for you too. Alaska Salmon Fishing Kodiak Island on the Gulf of Alaska is a virtual feed station for predatory fish. Needlefish, candlefish, and herring all congregate here by the millions to spawn, hatch, and grow. They provide an abundance of food for the king salmon who are voraciously feeding in the surrounding ocean all year round. King salmon spend many years in the ocean. Some grow to enormous size. The real big ones though, are only here in the spring because they leave the ocean to run up the rivers to spawn in June. We catch 50 and 60 pounders in June, July, and August but these are not fully mature fish. The big ones, the mature ones, are in our waters in late April and May chasing the large herring that are spawning here. They are the 70 and 80 pounders. Come to our Alaska Fishing Lodge and take a chance on catching a trophy King Salmon. These Kings are not colored fish that act like old bulls when you catch them in the river. They are chrome bright ocean going kings that rip line off the spool like missiles, that sound deep beneath the surface on one run and explode into the air on the next. These fish rush the boat and create slack on even the most experienced ocean fishermen. These big fish are known by many names. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game reports that “The chinook salmon has numerous local names. In Washington and Oregon, chinook salmon are called chinook, while in British Columbia they are called spring salmon. Other names are quinnat, tyee, tule, black mouth, and king.” Whatever you call them, they are exciting to catch and wonderful to eat. To catch your Trophy King Salmon come to the Port Lions Lodge; Alaska’s Premier Fishing Lodge.

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