We’ve posted a fair amount of photos in the past of dolly varden (or, Arctic Char? Click here for an explanation) in full spawning colors at Alaska West. Why? Because frankly, we think they’re one of the coolest looking fish around.
From late July through the end of August, many of our guests love spending part of their day targeting dollies. After all, they’re fun to catch on light tackle, are extremely pretty, and are present in numbers that most anglers can’t comprehend until visiting Alaska.
However, what we haven’t posted many photos of is what our dollies look like when they first enter our river. That’s right, what many don’t realize is that the majority of our dolly varden/Arctic char are actually sea-run, and we experience a pretty magnificent migration of char during the beginning of our season at Alaska West.
Upon entering our river, the ‘Dolly-Char’ look far different from the ‘clowned-up‘ appearance they’ll take on in only a couple of months. Sporting a sheath of chrome, many are as bright as any fresh salmon or steelhead, and while they might not always fight the same, we’d be lying if we said we hadn’t been surprised to find out our ‘rogue coho’ had turned into a chrome dolly upon entering the net.