Sunday, April 24, 2011

Naha River Alaska steelhead 2011

We all have our favorite place, sometimes its simply the end of a dock on a quiet lake, sometimes its a river that enchants us, the Naha is mine. Access is plane or boat only, no road scars the river bank, garbage is non existent, and once again I believe I was the first to fish it this spring. Unlike years past the snow was gone due to a very mild snow winter, as nice as the walking was due to the lack of snow the down side was the bears so fresh out of their dens you could smell them long before you saw one... I saw 4 in 6 hours. One of the greatest things about the Naha is the fact that the river is home to both Big steelhead and some of the prettiest fat rainbows you could ask for. I was hoping to shoot a video but constant SE Alaska rain made that idea too difficult. Dustin an I started out on the lower river and fish were scarce, within 30 minutes he had landed the first fish of the day, about a pound er and dark. That would be the only fish landed in the first 2 miles of river, and the only fish my lead bouncing friends would hook. Ray and Jim caught up to us and declared some real estate at a nice cut bank and started to fish. I watched for a bit, then faded into the timber to the trail and started humping up river as fast as I could. The fish were most likely higher in the system in my mind so I had to fight myself to pass up dozens of likely spots and keep going.... and it paid off. 3 hours up the river produced 6 landed steelhead ( one cracking the tape at a staggering 37 inches ) and none of the others smaller than 30 inches. I swung a black sleech for a bit and then switched it up to an articulating trailer trash fly, and the trash was the star of the day. I also used double bugs free drifted to bang about 7 or 8 of the most stunning rainbows you could ever hold. I have included the few pictures of fish I took, without a partner it is hard too take pictures without risking hurting the fish, the rain was falling hard and the rocks were slippery and wet so a snapped a couple quick ones, some are poorly exposed because I rushed it. When I finally headed back down river I just joined the guys where I had left them and we decided the tide was right to leave. Back at the boat the numbers and cameras came out.. gear fishermen- 1 Fly- 6 steelhead and the trout for extra credit.... Man I love Alaskan steelhead and road less rivers! I will be in Alaska for two more months so hopefully many more posts will follow-