Flyfisher's Guide to Alaska

Flyfisher's Guide to Alaska

3.0 1
by Dan Busch, Scott Haugen

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Wilderness Adventures Press, Incorporated
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8.54(w) x 10.94(h) x 1.23(d)

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Flyfisher's Guide to Alaska 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Writing a guide to fly-fishing in the huge state of Alaska must be extremely difficult - tantamount to writing a book like 'A Fly-Fisherman's Guide to Everything West of the Mississippi.' At the outset, the author would have to make some important decisions on which of the literally thousands of the state's waters should be included in the book, and which waters should be left out. A logical way to start would be to divide the state into geographical regions, which is what 'A Flyfisher's Guide to Alaska' does, then decide what to highlight in each region. In this book, the authors have done a commendable job surveying a large number of diverse of waters however, in choosing which waters to exclude, they have left out some important fishing destinations, while at the same time including some inconsequential locations. But before criticizing it too much, I should point out that certain portions of the book are very well done. The regional sections on Bristol Bay, the Kenai Peninsula, and especially Kodiak Island are excellent, providing a high level of detail, with good maps and helpful sidebars containing notes on fishing gear and techniques, options for do-it-yourself fishing, and how to deal with ever-present grizzly bears. Throughout the book, there are lists of contact addresses that the reader will find useful: names and telephone numbers of hotels, fishing guides, air and boat charter businesses, and government offices for each regional selection. The run-timing charts for fish are accurate and helpful, and prospective visitors should pay particular attention to them. In Alaska, where much of the fishing is dependant on anadramous fish, proper timing is everything. But the book falls seriously short for its lack of coverage of some areas. For example, anyone wanting to use the book to gather information on pike fishing in Alaska would be disappointed to learn that perhaps the state's single best location for huge pike has been ignored. The Innoko River, a tributary to the Yukon, is where the current state record pike was taken, and is recognized by pike aficionados as quite literally one of the world's top destinations for these ferocious fish. Granted, this is a remote river, but no more so than many of the other places that are included in the book. I was very surprised to see no mention of it at all. Perhaps the most serious omission are the waters of Prince William Sound and the streams located along the Gulf of Alaska from the town of Cordova to Yakutat. This latter region boasts some of Alaska's best coho salmon rivers, which, due to their size, clarity, and huge runs of salmon, are very popular with fly-fishermen. Prince William Sound itself is a large area of countless islands, bays, and estuaries. While the Sound is not a leading fly-fishing destination, it nevertheless contains some important waters, especially for anglers concentrating on pink or coho salmon. Because of its relatively easy access through the ports of Seward, Whittier, Cordova, or Valdez, the book would have been much improved by mentioning at least an overview of the Sound and the Gulf Coast. The coverage for Southeast Alaska has comparable problems. Similar to Prince William Sound, Southeast Alaska is a region of steep-sided islands and fjords and dominated by small streams - few of which could be considered destinations unto themselves, such as the major rivers on the Kenai Peninsula or Bristol Bay - yet these numerous waters still provide a very high-quality angling experience. In this section, the author chooses to emphasize the fishing adjacent to the road systems of the region's small towns, presumably because that's where he assumes most anglers are likely to concentrate their efforts. In doing so, however, some of the territory's best angling is overlooked: many of the lakes, streams, and estuaries located only a short boat or float plane ride from the various towns provide much superior angling than those found on the r