Ahh, it’s that time of year again, Spring. The whales are returning and feeding in front of the lodge, Brown Bears are waking up, and the Sockeye Salmon are starting to think about coming home to spawn, back to the very rivers they were born in.
Every year we are asked by potential guests if we offer fly out fishing trips. Fly out fishing may represent the epitome of Alaska fishing to some; hopping in a float plane each morning, buzzing out to a remote river, getting dropped off with a guide, and catching salmon and trout all day.
The beauty of Raspberry Island, however, is that we’re able to boat to our rivers and streams, targeting salmon as they enter the system when they’re dime bright and full of fight, and their bodies haven’t begun to change and deteriorate as they prepare to spawn. Have you seen pictures of salmon colored deep red? These are caught father up river, have a more sluggish fight, and the table value is the opposite of the fish we’ll be targeting right from the ocean.
Next, it is easy for us to combine both fresh and salt water fishing into one day; so perhaps fish the river in the morning, return to the boat for lunch, and catch halibut in the afternoon, and finally pull the crab pots on the way home. You can’t do that in an airplane. Want to stop and check out a raft of sea otters or visit Bob the Stellar Sea Lion? We can pull up, shut down the engines, and stay as long as you’d like.
So, yes, we could offer fly out fishing, but we feel it would subtract from your trip; our location gives us the opportunity to do a lot more each day from one of our catamarans. Our peak times for intercepting the salmon they enter the rivers, combining this fishery with Halibut and other saltwater species, is from late May through mid June for Sockeye Salmon, and late August through late September for Coho (Silver) Salmon.