If fly-fishing were considered a religion, then Alaska would be its High Church. Fly-Fishing in Alaska is more than just a sport or passion - it’s a way of life. Once you have been bitten by the bug, you’re “hooked”. A stay at Alaska Trophy Adventures Lodge provides you with one of the most remote and stunningly beautiful locations on the planet.
My father always told me, it’s about being outdoors and on the river. Catching a fish is just a bonus. Well in Alaska, I have to constantly remind myself to stop and appreciate the scenery because the fishing is so great. When discussing fishing, you may have heard the saying “it’s called fishing not catching”. But at ATA Lodge it can often seem like catching. For many, Alaska has always been a dream destination, somewhere they envision coming to only once in a lifetime. But once you get up here and experience what we have to offer, it will be hard to stay away. There is something about catching a huge Alaskan rainbow trout or salmon, surrounded by beauty beyond compare, that I believe calls to the deepest part in all of us.
South-West Alaska is the High Church of fly-fishing. Whether it be the sensation of a 35+lbs King Salmon pushing a double handed rod to its limits, or seeing a 26-inch rainbow trout rise to crush a mouse pattern tied the previous evening, or just the feeling that no one has ever fished these beautiful waters before; it has to be said that fishing in Alaska is something very special. It brings us back to the reason we started fishing in the first place when we were children. For the fun of it, for the thrill of a tight line, and the sound of a reel's drag screaming. It's for the laughter when your friend loses that fish of a lifetime, because in the heat of the moment he forgot to let go of the reel as "the one that got away” took its final run downstream.
Boasting a world-famous run of all five species of pacific salmon, the Alagnak is also home to a host of resident fish, such as leopard rainbow trout, arctic char and grayling. This prestigious river is located within the Katmai National Park, with its headwaters in the surrounding mountains and drains into Bristol Bay. It is also famously known as “The Branch River” for its seemingly endless braids, where 10 miles of river can easily contain 30 miles of fishable waters. With such exclusive river access, you are sure not to be bothered by any crowds.
The Alagnak river flows through a wild land of captivating landscapes, abundant wildlife, and cultural heritage. Meandering down the braided river, you may discover a bald eagle perched atop a spruce tree, gaze at a moose browsing above the river bank in the wet sedge tundra, or encounter a brown bear feasting upon spawning salmon.
For centuries people have lived along the Alagnak and depended on the rich natural resources for survival. The Alagnak River’s wildlife and the abundant fish make the river the most sought after destination for sport fishing in Southwest Alaska!
Wading and fishing are made easy on the many small natural islands and gravel bars, which the river flow creates. Crystal clear water allows for perfect stalking conditions, whilst slow runs and fast riffles are commonplace, with pools well suited to holding pods of staging salmon, often 35+ lbs., when targeting the Kings. With hatches occurring throughout the season, it is not rare to see a resident trout or grayling rise.
But we encourage you to leave your cell phones and laptops at home and enjoy our stunning scenery, abundant wildlife and experience a type of world class fishing that has always filled your dreams.
ATAL.....A True Alaska Lodge!
Captain Jacob Q McGee
(Most photos by Fisheye Guy Photography)