Going the Distance (in remote Alaska)
One of the charms and hardships of both our operations is on most days you walk to reach the fishing grounds. And you definitely walk a lot relative to most of the great fly fishing lodges in Alaska. “What’s the upside,” you say?
You get to observe and absorb nature more fully along the way. Plus we can access areas rarely seen by human eyes, or fly rods.
SAFARI camp, the operation located on the isolated Pacific coast of the Alaska Peninsula, is complete sensory overload every day – the sound of distant surf, the smell of the ocean in the air, the chattering otters, fresh flowers blooming, the squawking gulls, the soaring eagle, and the ambling bear, all set against the rugged Aleutian Mountain Range in one direction and the north Pacific Ocean in the other.
Is it worth going the distance? Absolutely. I wouldn’t have it any other way…
But don’t let the idea of hiking to fish completely scare you off… At SAFARI camp, the best fly fishing for salmon is often quite close to camp on the tidal flat. To access, you walk down the stairs from camp, take a left turn, walk about 200 yards, and boom you’re there. Pretty easy. The shortest walk to good fishing on our Bristol Bay fly fishing trip is about a 10 minute trek across the tundra. Not too bad.
At both operations some days you’ll take a short shuttle ride via boat. But after that you’re on foot. And good fishing can be at your drop point all the way to 100+ minutes hike up river and/or across the tundra.
Blasphemous to many dedicated hard-core fly fishermen, yes, some days we just hike our butts off and never pick up a fly rod. But only if you choose to hike for the day instead of fly fishing…
While there are many easier hiking opportunities, only a few guests and guides participate in the extreme, like the above. This is when going the distance really hurts. Still worth? Yep.
Posted in Off the Wall, Photo