Wild Alaska Rainbow Trout
Royal Wolf Lodge fishes primarily for rainbow trout – gear of choice, fly rod! In the Bristol Bay region, rainbow trout are world famous not only for their size, but numbers. Average fish range 16-24” with 25-30+” fish caught every year. The growing season for these rainbows is very short and encompasses the three to four months during the summer season. These Alaskan rainbow trout are also extremely migratory; biologists have radio-tagged these fish and have found them to travel as far as sixty miles in a single summer. The reason for this migration? Food, glorious food!
The staple food source for these rainbows is salmon. They eat the salmon eggs, they eat the baby salmon (fry, parr and smolt) and they eat the flesh of the dead adult salmon. Within the three main drainages that Royal Wolf fishes, millions upon millions of salmon run every year, making it an ideal area to produce big rainbows. Aside from the salmon, rainbows are also very opportunistic and will feed on a wide array of food items including nymphs, hatching adult insects, mice, leeches and minnows. This allows our Alaska fly fishing guides to utilize many different techniques with the fly rod, including dry flies.
Additional Fish Species
In addition to Rainbow Trout, Royal Wolf also encounters such species as:
Lake Trout, Dolly Varden/Char, Grayling and Sockeye Salmon.
Lake trout are present in our streams from the June 8th trout opener until approximately the second week of July. They are also available towards the end of the season in mid September. As lake dwelling fish, we often encounter these trout at either the top or bottom of the rivers (where the lake flows into the river and where the river flows into another lake). These trout especially enjoy ambushing tiny sockeye fry as they descend the rivers and plunge into the large, cool lakes. Lake trout are a fish that like a large meal – they will often come out of nowhere to grab the trout you are fighting.
DOLLY VARDEN / CHAR
Throughout our three drainages, we have both sea run and lake run dolly varden and char. These are a nice bonus alongside our beautiful rainbow trout. We commonly catch them on egg patterns, but also do very well with dry flies, nymphs and streamers. In the fall especially, the dollies and char turn some of the most brilliant colors, a true complement to the brightly changing tundra and beautiful fall leaves.
Arctic Grayling also inhabit most of our streams and in good numbers. They are a great fish to catch on dry flies and have beautiful spots with a huge dorsal fin. Some of our grayling reach 22” and up.
Each year, millions of sockeye salmon run up the streams and rivers that RWL considers home water. In late June and the first few weeks of July, the sockeye will be chrome bright and a blast to hook on the fly rod.