As a guide at Alaska West, Kyle Shea gets to swing flies for king salmon in during his downtime. Here’s his rig of choice!
- Echo King 9130-4
- Ross CLA # 7
- Airflo Skagit Compact 660
- 250 yards of 30 lb. Dacron backing, wrapped 4-5 times around the spool and tied with an arbor knot
- Bimini Twist tied in the running line end of the backing
- 100 feet of 40 lb. Berkley Trilene Big Game as running line attached to the backing using a loop to loop connection. Loop knot of choice in running line is a triple surgeon’s loop, coated with Loon’s U.V. Knot Sense.
- Airflo Skagit Compact 660 attached to running line via loop to loop connections using the factory loop of the shooting head and a triple surgeon’s loop (coated with U.V. Knot Sense) in running line
- Rio Heavy Skagit MOW Tip attached to shooting head using factory loops
- 4 foot leader tied with a furled butt section using 15 lb. Maxima Ultragreen
- Flies of choice are stacked Marabou Tubes of varying colors depending on light/water conditions.
“Being so close to ocean at Alaska West, the King Salmon are as fresh and aggressive as they come. Echo hit it on the head when they designed their King series of rods. They have great fighting power in the butt section for battling big bright Kings, but are not so stiff that they lose that “soulful” feel. At 13 feet they seem to hit the balance to throw all the distance you might need on the Kanektok, while still being a great fighting stick.”
“I really like plain ol’ Berkley Trilene Big Game for running line. The 40 lb. offers great “shootability” but is a larger diameter than most mono running line material. I feel that this larger diameter is much easier to handle in most fishing situations, not to mention it is extremely affordable!”
“For most situations my sink tips of choice are Rio’s MOW Tips. With a fixed length of 10 feet, I like the benefit of keeping my casting stroke the same throughout the day even as I adjust my depth.”
“For most situations on the Kanektok, a straight shot of 15 or 20 lb. Maxima Ultragreen is a great leader to hang off of your sink tip. However, lately I’ve grown fond of furling a butt section into 15 lb. maxima for my leader. The furled butt section allows for a little bit better turnover of heavier flies, as well as adding good shock absorption when fighting a fish.”
“More so than fly pattern, I think versatility is the most important aspect when selecting flies for King Salmon – that’s why I like Marabou Tubes. They are simple to tie and can be stacked together to allow for any size or color combination you can dream up.”
“One thing I love most about this setup that I think will appeal to folks is its affordability. From top to bottom this set-up is about as inexpensive as it gets for a two-handed King setup while still offering great performance and dependability.”
Bryan Whiting says
Where can one buy stackable marabou tube flies?
Andy Warren says
Kyle: This is great. Thanks for explaining this simple rig. See you in June!