There may not be a ton of king salmon around yet, but each day we are hearing about more and more fish. One exciting thing we have heard from anglers that have been successful is that some of the fish are big! There have been several fish caught over 30lbs so far this year! Lena Cove and Fish Creek have reportedly produced some fish. This next week we should see fish starting to mill around the mouth of Auke Creek as well. King salmon are stout fish and with that in mind they require a big reel with a strong drag. We just got a few of the Nautilus CCF-X2 reels back in stock. This reel is arguably the best all-around reel for the money. If you are casting and stripping, stick with a standard weight forward floating line (something like the Rio Predator) to help cast those heavy king salmon flies. Add 5-10’ fast sink Airflo Polyleader if you need to get your fly a little deeper. If you plan on trying to swing for king salmon in the channel you will want to either get a sink tip line like the Rio Outbound Short or you can use a Rio Mow tip. Rio VersiTip fly lines are also a great option because it comes with several different sink rate tips as well as a floating tip to cover all your anadromous needs. Mr. Bodangles and Mega Dolly Llamas are some of the most effective patterns when you are stripping flies. If you plan on swinging go for lighter weight flies with a lot of profile (Rockstars, Trailer Trash, or Stu’s Chinook Intruders).
Windfall creek has been quiet so far. Reports from our friends who were up there the evening of 6/8 said the water was high. As you will see in the photo above, high is almost an understatement! Large amounts of snow from this past winter, yes that snow, is now melting off and causing more havoc. We would expect to see fish starting to come into the creek by this Saturday. With several other runs being a little late this year, plan on the second half of June being the best time to catch a sockeye. There is a new log laying across the normal “sockeye” hole this year, so it’s not a bad idea to plan on bringing a few extra flies, at least until it gets flushed or cut out. It’s not normal for sockeye to chase a stripped fly, but at high water don’t be afraid to get creative. We have seen a few sockeye caught on pink leeches. The S.T.S leech in passion pink is one of my favorites. The tungsten eyes help this fly get down fast and a single rabbit strip with a marabou collar provides the best movement possible. There are also plenty of nice cutthroat trout to be had on Wednesdays and Saturdays this month as well! We also have our Grab and Go's ready for all you anglers trying to get out the road as fast as possible after work.
The Dolly fishing has also continued to be red hot. The smolt have had a chance to spread out which can actually help the dolly fishing. Dollies are like a pack of wolves and the more they have to search to find prey the more likely you are to have your fly slammed as they swim by. Under the Gastineau Bridge down in front of the whale statue has been the most consistent place close to town. Boy Scout beach and Echo cove have also been good for people willing to make the drive. Make sure to have a sinking Polyleader with you because this time of year the larger Dollies tend to be a little deeper.
We hope everyone has a great week of fishing. With cloudy skies and light rain in the forecast, things are primed for a good bite. Beware, the “good bite” however can be on you! With good fishing comes everyone's favorite time of year. That means No-see-ums, clouds of No-see-ums. We have plenty of Cumings Black Fly head nets, insect repellent, and bug shirts. The Simms Bug Stopper hoody has become a critical piece of my kit. It is a lightweight hoodie with Insect Shield and UPF protection. I can’t recommend them enough! Good luck out there!
Cory, Brad, Mike and the rest of the crew at AFFG
*We love using our customers' photos in our future fishing reports, but we really want to encourage ethical treatment of fish. When practicing catch and release do your best to handle the fish minimally and get pictures with the fish in the water! Please avoid placing your fingers in gills, setting fish on dry ground, or holding them way above water with your dry hands. Remember this resource is only sustainable if we all help do our part. Submit your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org or tag us on Instagram (@alaskaflyfishinggoods)
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