fly, spin & conventional gear
the guides will help you decide
Fishing the rivers & streams
of Bristol Bay Alaska
2 Anglers :: 1 Guide Ratio
We take care of the details ~ You focus on relaxing and catching
Also known as Chinook, Tyee, Blackmouth, Tule, Quinnat, or Spring salmon.
Average Size: 20-25lbs
Alaska state record: 96.4lbs
Tackle used: Everyone has heard the statement, “to catch big fish you have to fish with big lures”, when fishing for the large Alaskan King’s this is definitely a true statement. While fishing conventional tackle we often fish with large crankbaits or “plugs”. One can use a variety of colors, but we have found that green [chartreuse] and dark pink produce very well for us.
If flyfishing is your game, large 2/0 or 3/0 marabou and rabbit strip flies in the same colors work well. The most efficient way to hook Kings on a fly rod is using a two-handed ‘Spey’ rod with heavy sink tips.
Habitat: While in the ocean, Kings live and feed at depths averaging 80 to 280 feet down, so when they enter the rivers it is no surprise that they like the bottom. While traveling through the many river systems King salmon tend t move through and hold in the deeper river channels and buckets (8-12 foot depths). Whether using flies or conventional tackle, the key to hooking these fish is using whatever means to get your lures down to there level.
Is also known as Calico, keta, Fall or Autumn Salmon, and the Dog Salmon due to their large sharp teeth during the spawning phase.
Average size: 8 – 12 lbs
Alaska state record: 27 lb 3oz
Tackle used: Chum salmon are very aggressive fish, and when hooked can be absolutely explosive. The conventional tackle fisherman can do very well using small marabou lead head jigs(hot pink) fished under a sliding dink float. By the same token, fly fisherman can utilize this same technique using a floating fly line and a strike indicator.
Habitat: When the Chums arrive in the fresh water they tend to congregate in the shallow soft water areas on the down river end of gravel bars. This can be a great situation, often times you will see the Chum’s rolling and moving about in 2-3 feet of water. This makes it possible to stalk and sight cast to these fish. It can almost be like stalking Bonefish on the salt water flats of the south.
Also known as Red’s or Blueback(describing the blue sheen on the dorsal surface of the fish when they first enter the fresh water).
Average size: 6 – 10 lbs
Alaska state record: 16 lbs
Tackle used: Being plankton feeders during their lives in the salt water, Sockeye salmon can be very finicky and challenging to hook. Most Sockeye salmon fisherman use small sparsely tied flies, some anglers do well using simply a small red hook.
Habitat: Sockeye salmon are the most abundant of all the pacific salmon species, some of the river systems getting returns of up to two million Sockeye.Like the Chums, Sockeye tend to run the shallow water on the edges of the rivers, and it is not uncommon to see a steady stream of moving fish for days on end.
Also known as the Humpback or Humpy describing the outrageous hump the male fish acquire on their back when they enter the fresh water.
Average size: 3 – 5 lbs
<>Alaska state record: 12 lbs 9ozs
Tackle used: Pink salmon like the Chum’s are quite aggressive and in most cases will attack anything pink. Knowing this, one can use small marabou lead head jigs and do quite well with either conventional or fly gear.
Habitat: Pink salmon are also bank runners, often slowing to rest in soft water back eddies or slough mouths. This combined with their aggressive nature makes these fish quite easy to target.
Also known as Coho Salmon are the second largest of the pacific salmon.
Average size: 10 – 12 lbs
Alaska state record: 26 lbs
Tackle used: Silver salmon can be taken using many of the same techniques used for many of the other salmon species, including fly fishing and spinning fishing with lures and jigs. When conditions are perfect, our favorite method is “wogging”. Wog’s or Polywogs are hot pink spun deer hair flies that are fished by stripping the line and chugging the fly across the surface. Silver’s grab these flies violently, making it one of the most exciting methods for catching these fish.
Habitat: As silvers move into the fresh water they also tend to seek out soft water. Large back eddies with pronounced current seams or depressions in the rivers bottom structure seem to hold Silvers very well.
Refered to as Lakers.
Alaska state record: 47 lbs. 0 oz.
Habitat:Lakes and streams feeding or emanating from lakes.
Average size:1 – 2 lbs.
Alaska state record: 3.9 lbs.
Habitat:Pristine, cold rivers and streams.
Average size:3 – 5 lbs.
Alaska state record: 15 lbs. 7 oz. **
Tackle used:Spin rod in the 8 – 14 lbs range or a 7 – 9 weight Fly Rod with floating line. Spoons, Plugs and softplastic. Flies: Minnow patterns, Mice and Dahlberg Diver style patterns.
Habitat: Lakes and slow rivers, especially in the sloughs.
We help you customize your fishing experience
by targeting the waters of bristol bay, Alaska during their prime
At Mission Lodge we have a wide variety of Alaskan fish species to chase after. Some of these are referred to as our native species, which in essence are the non-ocean going fish. The rest are the Pacific salmon species which we are targeting in or close to the tidewater as they first enter the rivers and streams of Bristol Bay Alaska.
We are blessed with five species of Pacific Salmon that come up our rivers and streams, chrome-bright and full of fight. Throughout our summer and fall season, there is a different combination of salmon that are available to our anglers. We are happy to chase after these with fly, spin or conventional tackle depending the needs and wants of the angler.
For our native species we practice strict “Catch and Release”. If you would like to take some fresh salmon home, our guides will help you pick the best ones to keep and filet, vacuum seal and flash freeze your catch. Our lodge has developed the attitude of “limiting your kill, don’t kill your limit”. Each angler can take up to 50 pounds of frozen salmon filets, which happens to be about ten times the national average of salmon consumed in the U.S.A.
“limit your kill ~ don’t kill your limit”
As part of our packages, we fly you out to different destinations each day. Our fleet of three DeHaviland Beavers are maintained to the highest standards possible and our pilots are all veteran Alaskan bush pilots who will get you safely from point “A” to point “B” in these gentle birds.
While you might have been attracted by thoughts of our World class fishing, what you find is the flying becomes a huge part of the show. Rumor has it that people actually go to places like this just for “Flight-Seeing”?! Obviously they have never sampled our fishing.
PARKS, REFUGES & MORE
We are fortunate to have a number of locations available for you to fish that include private leases, tribal lands, State and National Parks and Refuges. We currently have permits to fish in the following State and Federal parks, preserves and wilderness refuges.
Togiak National Wildlife Refuge:
Togiak National Wildlife Refuge was established to conserve fish and wildlife populations and habitats in their natural diversity including salmon, marine birds and mammals, migratory birds, and large mammals, to fulfill international treaty obligations; to provide for continued subsistence use; and to ensure necessary water quality and quantity.
Katmai National Park & Preserve:
Katmai National Monument was created in 1918 to preserve the famed Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes, a spectacular forty square mile, 100 to 700 foot deep ash flow deposited by Novarupta Volcano in 1912. A National Park & Preserve since 1980, today Katmai is still famous for volcanoes, but also for brown bears, pristine waterways with abundant fish, remote wilderness, and a rugged coastline.
Wood-Tikchik State Park:
The largest state park in the nation, at 1.6 million acres, Wood-Tikchik State Park was created in 1978 for the purpose of protecting the area’s fish and wildlife breeding and support systems and preserving continued subsistence and recreational activities. The management philosophy is one of non-development and maintenance of the area’s wilderness character.
Park facilities are rustic and few, with great emphasis placed upon low impact camping and “pack it in, pack it out” practices.
F.A.Q.'s - Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Where does the trip start?
A: Dillingham, AK. The lodge provides van transportation from the
Dillingham (DLG) airport. Approx 20 minutes from Dillingham to
Lake Aleknagik by van And then approx 10 minutes in a covered boat to Mission Creek Lodge.
Q: What is included in the package price?
A: Transport from Dillingham as described above, all meals,beverages accommodations. Fully guided daily adventures (including float plane transportation), all necessary gear and equipment (including fishing gear , waders and wading boots), filleting, packaging, freezing of Salmon species.
Q: What is not included:
A: R/t air transportation to Dillingham, AK, gratuities (suggested 15-20% of package price) , Alaska Fishing License ($55 for 7 day , $35 for 3 day) , Alaska King Tag ($55 for 7 day, $35 for 3 day – only necessary during King Salmon season ends July 31) , items of a personal nature such as massage, gift shop and smoked fish.
Q: What airlines service Dillingham (DLG):
A: Alaska Airlines (www.alaskaair.com) and their partner, Peninsula Airways (www.penair.com).
Q: How much fish and what kind can I take home?
A: We ask that each client not take more than one 50lb box of SALMON ONLY
WE PRACTICE A STRICT CATCH AND RELEASE POLICY ON ALL RESIDENT SPECIES (Rainbow Trout, Dolly Varden, Artic Char, Grayling, Pike and Lake Trout).
Q: When does the day start and end?
A: A typical day starts at 7:00 am with breakfast (coffee is available at 5:30 am) with planes leaving between 7:30-8:30 am and returning between 5:00 â€“6:00 pm. Depending on the group size and scheduling for the day you are welcome to request a later start. Dinner is generally at 7:00 pm .
Q: What does a typical day look like?
A: 7:00 am full sit down breakfast
7:30-8:30 am depart for a full day of guided activities
5:00-6:00 pm return to lodge
6:00-7:00 pm appetizers are served and activities are scheduled for the next day
7:00 pm Alaska gourmet dinner is served
After dinner guides sit down with guests and talk about the next days activity
Q: Can I change my mind about what I want to do when I get there?
A: Absolutely, no plans are made before a guest arrives. Each night the head guide will talk to each guest about his/her desires for the next day and then prepare a plan for the following day. The plans will be posted on a guest board each evening.
Q: How old should a child be before bringing him/her to Mission Lodge?
A: Every child is different. Days are full and depending on the child and how engaged he/she is in the outdoors will determine the proper age – remember there are no price reductions for children. Our aircraft hold 6 passengers – no matter what the age.
Q: What kind of aircraft does the lodge use and what is the safety record?
A: The lodge operates three (3) DeHavilland Beavers on floats. Our safety record is without injury incident in our 24 years of operation.
Q: How far do you travel to daily destinations?
A: We have so many destinations it is hard to answer this question. Your destination travel time will be anywhere for 10 minutes to 1 and a half hours. Much of this depends on winds and weather. In a normal week you will generally only travel on average 20-40 minutes a day by plane (EACH WAY). Some of our destinations are close and only a 10-40 minute boat ride from the lodge.
Q: What about weather if we can’t fly?
A: We have several opportunities within easy boat access from the lodge.
On average in a season we only have approx three (3) days in which the planes cannot fly at all. We never compromise customer safety EVER. If it is not safe we DO NOT fly.
Q: How will we travel once we reach our destination?
A: Mission Lodge has over 40 boats stashed throughout the Bristol Bay region. Many of the destinations you will fly in and meet your guide who will be waiting for you with a boat. Other destinations you will fly with your guide and will have a boat at your destination. Some destinations will be accessable only by foot, others will have a kayak waiting for you or you will bring a raft with you. All of this will be pre-planned the evening before and will be fully orchestrated by your professional guide.
Q: How bad are the bugs?
A: It depends on the month and the season – wet seasons are worse than dry seasons. Normally unless you are hiking in the tundra the bugs are not bad at all. They can be pesky at times in the evenings on the decks if the wind is still. A good bug repellent with deet is highly recommended. Mosquito netting is normally not needed but if you plan on doing a lot of hiking it may be a good idea. The lodge has bug repellent but you are always encouraged to bring your own.
Q: What is the best time to come?
A: Mission Lodge is only open during the prime fishing months and the prime weather months. Any time from June-September is excellent it just depends on your activity desires. If you are specifically seeking a certain species of fish or a particular animal then sometimes are better than others. Please refer to the fish and animal viewing chart.
Q: Can you accommodate special diets?
A: Yes, within reason. Because of our extremely remote location certain items may be hard to come by – please make sure to fill out the questionnaire and return ASAP to forewarn our chef of your special needs. If we cannot accommodate your needs, we will advise you in advance.
Q: How many people can the lodge accommodate?
A: 24 guests is our maximum most weeks host no more than 20 guests.
Q: Do all rooms have a private bath?
A: No , we have 20 guest rooms and can accommodate 20 guests each with a private guest room. However, three rooms have completely private baths, another four rooms share a bath in between each two, and thirteen rooms upstairs share three very large bathrooms complete with showers, stalls and vanities. We have found the majority of our male clients do not mind sharing a bathroom but enjoy having a private bedroom.
Q: Do we have to pay extra for a private bath?
A No (unless it is the ‘owners suite’) private bathrooms are given to couples first and then to returning clients. If you would prefer a private bath please make sure to make a note upon booking. Requests will be handled on a first come, first served basis given the above priorities.