By Bob Kratzer
Well I have to admit…I live a magical life. Being able to head to fishing waters on a daily basis to share my passion for fishing with my clients as they partake of some of the most scenic and beautiful landscape that the world has to offer, is truly amazing. And the fishing usually isn’t too bad either. Very few get to experience what I like to call the “Best of Both Worlds”.
In my case, the best of both worlds isn’t just the correlation of fishing and guiding. Both worlds for me include the Olympic Peninsula waters of Washington State as well as those of the most prolific king salmon water in all of Alaska, the Nushagak River. These two worlds are quite different, but just as magical each in their own way.The Bristol Bay region of southwest Alaska is home to every species of Pacific salmon, but the prize of the waters of the Nushagak River is the mighty “King” salmon. It is home to the most prolific run of these silver masses of power in all of Alaska. With returning numbers averaging over 100,000 each year, fishermen from around the world flock to the “Nush” to get the chance of not only catching the big one, but the opportunity of catch rates that on most days average well into double digits.
The king run lasts but a few short weeks, from the second week in June until the end of July. Having spent over 20 years fishing these waters, I have concentrated our guiding time on the river down to a 30 day window that ultimately encompasses the best days of the run. Much preparation goes into cramming a whole fishing season into such a brief window, but our high repeat client rates are the proof that we strive to offer our fishermen the best king salmon fishing opportunity possible.
Our Alaska Kingfisher’s Camp on the Nushagak River offers four and eight day packages. Packages include: roundtrip floatplane service from Dillingham, wall tent accommodations, all meals, 12 hours of guided fishing each day, all fishing equipment as well as fish processing, vacuum packing, freezing and boxing for your return trip. We can handle up to 20 guests per four day trip.
You will learn many different techniques during your days on the water plus both standard rods and reels as well as fly fishing equipment are available on each of our boats. Your guide will do whatever it takes to make your day on the water fun, exciting and full of everything that Alaska has to offer. Your days will be full of singing reels and bent rods, whether it be chasing big kings as they pull you up and down the river or casting a spinner or throwing a fly for fresh chum salmon along one of the many gravel runs along the Nushagak’s banks.
Alaska Kingfisher’s is located in a very remote area, 350 miles southwest of Anchorage. Being in remote Alaska comes with its perks. Being on a river that is home to the largest run of king salmon, combined with very low pressure, results in catch numbers you just can’t believe unless you experience it for yourself. Fish Facts…Our boats average 48 kings per day (four fishermen per boat) with many days approaching triple digits. Most fish are in the 15 to 25 pound range, but many fish are caught each year in the 40 to 50 pound range. And the chum fishing can be just as exciting with one group last summer consisting of a Grandfather – Father – Grandson combination landing 172 fish in one afternoon! You can see why we like to call it “Catching” not fishing!
The other side of my “Best of Both Worlds” is being the owner of Angler’s Guide Service in Washington State. We offer a steelhead and salmon experience that you will never forget.
We are based out of Forks, Washington, “The Steelhead Capitol of the World” and we’re here to offer you the fishing adventure of a lifetime. Myself, along with guides Bill Meyer and Ryan Celusta have many years of experience on the rivers of Washington and Alaska. We all love to watch our clients land that first fish, be it a 20 pound steelhead they have been searching for their whole life or an acrobatic spring or fall salmon.
Of course we fish the Olympic Peninsula rivers that have become synonymous with the words steelhead and salmon, including the Hoh, Sol Duc, Bogachiel, Calawah, Queets and Quilayute. But, we also guide on southestern Washington rivers, including the world famous Cowlitz, the Humptulips, Chehalis, Satsop, and Wynoochie. And, closer to Seattle, we guide on Puget Sound area rivers including the scenic and majestic Skagit River, the Sauk, Skykomish, Snohomish, Snoqualmie, Green, Stillaguamish and yes, even the Yakima river! As you will see, we have formed one of the largest and most experienced guide services in the state to offer you, the angler, the very best fishing the northwest has to offer.
So, give us a call today to book your next great fishing adventure. And to say thanks to all of you that have made our businesses successful and all of those long hours worthwhile, we are offering a 15% discount at our Alaska Kingfisher’s Camp in 2011 to celebrate our “15 Year Anniversary”. Give us a call today at 800-577-8781 and mention that you read about us in the Sportsman’s News and take advantage of this great opportunity. Thanks and we hope to see you on the water soon! www.alaskakingfishers.com