We’ve gotten a lot of questions lately from anglers wanting to know what combination of rods is most appropriate at various times of year at each of our lodges. We’re happy to answer those questions!
Today starts a series on rod ‘quivers’ – combinations of rods that work well in a certain location at a certain time of year. We’ll start with August in Alaska.
- An 8 weight with a floating line for silvers. We tend to like faster-action rods here, as they’ve got the power to shoot line and easily cover a group of fish in a slough, and they’ve got the backbone to fight bigger fish.
- A 6 weight with a floating line for rainbows. Late in the year (and August is late for us), most guests are spending some time in the Lower Kanektok looking for bigger fish, and a 5 weight is often not enough. A 7 would be fine instead of a 6. We almost always fish floating lines for rainbows, but there’s often a fair amount of lead on the leader. If you’ve got a really short, fast sinktip (like 7 feet of tip or less), you might use it.
Nice To Have
- To the 8 and the 6 listed above, you could add a 5 weight – for dollies, or for fishing sidechannels or spawning beds for rainbows upriver, where smaller flies and less weight make the lighter rods fish great.
- You could also bring a 5 weight spey rod, or a 5 weight switch rod – awesome for swinging flies for rainbows.
- In addition to the above, could bring along another 8 weight for silvers – as a backup, or if you want to keep a couple of different silver flies strung up (e.g. light and dark, or popper and streamer).
- If you want to really get serious about lower-river rainbow fishing, you could bring along another 6 weight. This section of river is snaggy, and swimming your fly in amongst the snags is really important if you want to get the big boys. That means you’re going to lose some flies on snags, and if you’ve got a second 6 weight strung up, it doesn’t feel so bad to quickly break off a flesh fly in a snag, grab your other rod, and finish out the run. Some of us have even been known to string up more than two rods, with exactly the same fly, prior to floating through some particularly juicy, snaggy water.
And that pretty much does it! If you bring an 8 and a 6, you’ll be fine and you’ll fish both a lot. If you bring 2 8s, 2 6s and a 5, and a light double-hander to boot, you’ll be an Eagle Scout (that means you’ll Be Prepared) in the rod department.