Destinations » United States of America » Alaska » Upper Kenai River

Upper Kenai River, Alaska

We will be fly fishing for Rainbow Trout, Dolly Varden and Coho (Silver) Salmon on a 17-mile stretch of the Upper Kenai River designated by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game as a Trophy Rainbow Zone. The trout here average between 16” and 22” and can reach as large as 36 inches and weigh up to 12 pounds! We will be on the river for 8+ hours of guided fishing per day, for five days. Our guides are friendly, extremely knowledgeable and highly skilled at polishing your technique and putting you on fish -- lots of them! The lodge and river are situated within the Chugach National Forest and the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge; so don't be surprised if you spot Bald Eagles, Moose or Grizzly Bears during the day. We will float the river in 20' drift boats designed to carry up to four fishermen plus your guide - they are the perfect way to experience the entire river, as we will frequently stop, disembark, and wade a hot section of the river. Want to know early on if you've got a Rainbow or Dolly hooked? If it runs hard and gets airborne, chances are it's a 'Bow! Weather permitting, we have the option to add a fly-out (additional charge) to a nearby mountain lake for a chance to catch Arctic Grayling. Rainbow Trout and Dolly Varden are Catch and Release only on the Upper Kenai. Coho Salmon may be kept according to state regulations (usually 2 per day), but you are encouraged to keep only what you will eat. Your trip includes all fish processing, vacuum packing and boxing of your salmon catch for your return trip home.

Food

All meals are included in this trip, beginning with dinner the day of arrival, and culminating with a hearty send-off breakfast the morning of departure. Breakfast and dinner are served family-style in the spacious dining room of the Main Lodge. Joined by your guide, dinner is the perfect setting to recount the day's highlights and formulate tomorrow's plan of attack. Each evening our hosts will take your lunch order for the following day. Your packed lunch includes a deli-style sandwich with all the fixin's, an assortment of chips, baked goods, water and soft drinks. Beer and wine are available at the lodge for a nominal charge.

Lodging

We have the entire lodge to ourselves for the whole week! There are eight cozy riverside cabins -- each comfortably sleeping two adults, carpeted and heated, with plenty of storage for fishing gear and personal items. Each guest cabin has a covered porch with sitting chairs and your own personal cooler with ice. There are no TVs. Private bathrooms, including a shower and vanity, were added to each guest cabin prior to the 2005 season.

Travel

Plan your flight to arrive in Anchorage before 3:00 p.m. on Sunday. Schedule your departure flight from Anchorage to leave after 12:00 noon on the following Saturday. Pick-up and transfer to/from Anchorage Airport is in a comfortable 11-passenger van. It's approximately a 2 1/2-hour drive each way. Shuttle transfers between the airport and the lodge outside of the above designated times may incur an additional charge. Contact us if you would like assistance with air transportation. Travel insurance is highly recommended.

Fishing Gear

Your trip cost includes the use of all essential gear, including rods, reels, flies and hip boots (up to size 13). You are certainly welcome and encouraged to bring your own equipment -- waders can be either breathable or neoprene; fly rods should be 7wt (trout) and 9wt (salmon). Plan to dress in layers and always have rain gear available. Some other items to consider packing: camera, polarized sunglasses, hat and/or hooded jacket, binoculars, gloves, travel alarm, flashlight, insect repellant and sunscreen/chapstick. Note: there is plenty of dry storage available on the driftboats.

Read About this Destination

  • Northwest Fly Fishing magazine, July/August 2008 - "The Kenai for Noncombatants"
    (by Bob Gaines)
  • Field and Stream magazine, April 2005 - "Honeymoon Rainbows: Trout (and Marital) Bliss on the Upper Kenai" (by Dave Hurteau)
  • Trout magazine, Spring 2003 - "The Kenai River: Alaska's Favorite Fishery"
    (by Jim DeMoux)
  • "Kenai River is Fit for Kings" column by Bob Robb, Anchorage Daily News correspondent - printed April 10, 2003

Non-fishing Activities

Hiking, nature walks, and scenic rafting trips are all available from the lodge. The staff will gladly help arrange local flightseeing trips or a wildlife cruise in nearby Kenai Fjords for non-fishing guests. There is a wood-fired sauna, sand volleyball court, ping-pong table, horseshoe pits, a reading room, and a riverside deck with fire pit for your relaxation and enjoyment. The scenery and solitude are simply breathtaking!

Cost

At $3,275, this 5-Day/6-Night trip is easily one of the most afordable Alaskan fly fishing trips on the market. You are required to purchase a 7-day fishing license (available at the lodge) for $30. Airfare from your home airport to/from Anchorage, Alaska is not included in the price of your trip. Additionally, gratuities for your guide and local bar tab are not included in this cost. The staff strongly believes tips are not guaranteed or expected, but rather earned. Contact us for rates for non-fishing guests. A 50% deposit is required to reserve your trip.

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Testimonial

Your organization of this fishing expedition made it such a wonderful experience. This was far beyond our expectations!
Deane & Donna G., Honolulu, HI

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