Week 10 at Alaska West started out by welcoming back quite a few return guests from years past.
Mac and Greg Miller joined us again so that Mac could keep spending some of Greg’s inheritance money. John Amiro and Jebb Curelop came back for another go at the silvers of the Kanektok and Arolik. Mac and Greata Beatty along with Jim Piggot joined us to make more great memories during the week of fishing. We also got to hang out with Rich “Smokey” Little who worked for Alaska West for many years as the “Salmon Smoker”. Ed Novinsky came out to spend time with staff member and daughter Nika Novinsky, he fished and did dishes a bit as well!
A couple of other guys we had not seen in a while were John Freeman Jr and John Freeman III. These two know how to have a great time while giving each other lots of guff just to keep things interesting. We also met a bunch of newbies to Alaska West. Father and son team Jeff and Jay Schreiber had a blast catching all kinds of fish and just having good hangout time together. Also Ron Roberts brought his son Tucker, brother Gary and cousin Brian Fradette along for a trip of a lifetime and they surely made it that!
The weather this week really did not cooperate much. We had quite a bit of rain in the mountains the first couple days which brought the river to levels not seen this time of year for quite some time. The river also turned the color of hot cocoa which made for tough fishing conditions the first half of the week. We also experienced some pretty high winds with the storm which meant a lot of guests coming in for Robert’s hot soup each day.
Even though the weather was awful our guests and guides worked hard to keep up with the changing water conditions and helped each other find new water on a daily basis. Silvers were caught throughout the week and by the end the numbers landed were very good. We also saw some huge silvers landed along with last minute pushes of fresh pinks, chum and even a few small kings. John Freeman Jr even landed a Pacific Salmon Grand Slam in one day along with a bunch of dollies and trout to top it off. Not bad for such tough conditions. Proof again that the Kanektok at her worst is still better than most rivers at their best! The Arolik fit into that category as well with some stellar silver fishing along with a lot of trout and dolly’s upriver. Thanks to all of our guests who just kept at it through everything Mother Nature could throw at them!