Sunday, October 15, 2017


chalkboard outside the office door
Thought I'd share a few of the many thank you's that Jane and I received this season. The truth is we both need to thank all of you for making 2017 an enjoyable and successful year. We both feel very fortunate that we are able to make a living doing something we enjoy so much.

The wipe board on the front of the cabin was a popular place to leave a note.

I know Jane always appreciates seeing a note like this when people check out. So do I.
Hand written notes were popular this year too. 

We received a nice package in the mail recently (Beaver Nuggets!) and these notes were in it. This was from mom and dad.
Oldest son.

And, the youngest son.

Thanks again everyone for a fantastic season. We can't wait for the spring of 2018 to arrive.

Beaver Creek Cabins & Guide Service

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Fishing Report Week Ending 10/8/17

This will not be my last blog post, I plan to continue posting weekly, but it will be my last Kenai River fishing report for 2017.  As they say, "all good things must come to and end."

How was it out there? Well, on three consecutive days I fished the lower Kenai River for a couple of hours. I had one bite. That's a pretty good indicator that the bulk of the silver salmon run has definitely passed our part of the river. My fishing fortunes were reversed when I got a call from Boo Kandas asking me to join him on a trip Thursday to the middle Kenai River. Fishing the middle Kenai River with Boo has become an annual tradition in the fall and one I really look forward to. Along with Boo, old friends Brad, Clyde, and Kevin joined us. We hit the river mid-morning and only fished until the early afternoon. The final tally was nine silver salmon. Not a bad way to end my year on the river.
Thought I'd include a series of photos of the various stages of the tide influence on Beaver Creek. On Friday, the tide was 23.3 feet which is plenty of water to take out our dock. Beaver Creek Cabins is located 9.5 miles from the ocean and a tide this size will affect the river up to river mile 14. Here's a photo at 4:00pm, just before the tide change.
5:00pm. Tide is coming in.
6:00pm. High tide.

6:10pm. Dock is disconnected, in place, and waiting for the tide to go out.

Done. Sad.

Come back to the blog next week for a few observations about the 2017 season. Hope to see you then.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Fishing Report Week Ending 10/1/17

My last scheduled guided trip for the year was set for Wednesday. I was excited for this day up until the river started to rise and turn chalky. Would the last trip of this year be a bust? Tim McFerron called on Monday and said he and his crew would be down to the cabins at 5pm on Tuesday. I asked if he wanted to go out that evening to see if the river was fishable. If it wasn't, I had another guide lined up to take them to the middle river on Wednesday. Of course, he said they'd love to go out. So, Tim One, Tim Two, Greg, and I left the dock just after 5. I was definitely relieved when the first silver salmon bit within the first 10 minutes. Would that be it? Nope. We caught four more in the next hour and half of fishing and even had a double.
I couldn't wait for Wednesday morning to come and the Kenai River did not disappoint. Hey guys, it was a heckuva way to end a really good 2017 season.
I got home that afternoon and didn't have long to reflect on a fortuitous season before my buddy, Boo Kandas of Tall Tale Charters called me. He had wrapped up his season in Homer and wanted to know if Jane and I would help him take his boat out. Before that could be done, he said we needed to catch enough halibut to get us all through the winter.
What a great day. Boo, Jeff M, Jane and I boated 8 halibut between 35-60 pounds. It was one of the best fishing days I have had on the ocean in a long time.
The next day, Jane and I hooked up our travel trailer and headed north to camp and unwind from the season. We decided to go to an area were we've spent a lot of time: Trapper Creek.
There are spectacular views of Denali in Trapper Creek, and as you can see, we were so fortunate to have clear skies (they say Denali is shrouded in clouds 3/4's of the year).
What an incredible three day run. Limits of silver salmon for my clients, a freezer full of halibut, and breath taking views of Denali. I'm one lucky guy.

What's next. Well, the not so fun part of our season will be happening this week. Besides taking the dock and boat out, it's time to winterize the cabins. It won't be all work for me. I do plan on getting out to fish a few more times. A few more silvers for our freezer would be nice.

See you next week.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Fishing Report Week Ending 9/24/17

It was another fun week of fishing on the Kenai. Plenty of fish, decent enough weather, and time spent with friends made it so.
Neighbor Mary still has the touch when it comes to silver fishing.
And the same with Neighbor Nancy.
How do the fish stand a chance when there's three ladies in the boat?

The Xtratuf Girls
The weather was great the next day so it wasn't hard to convince Jane, Nancy, and Mary (Dan too) that we should go out again. My goal was to get Nancy enough fish to get her through until next spring. In a couple of hours that goal was met.

Lars and Abe's Excellent Adventure
On Wednesday, I received a text from my former "employee" and long time friend Lars. He said he flew from Minnesota to Seattle to meet up with another friend and they drove a conversion van up the AlCan Highway to Alaska. I asked if they had any plans and he said no. Perfect, come on down. I told them they should stay in a cabin and that we should go fishing. There was no argument.
That's Lars on the left, and Abe on the right. It turns out that Jane and I went to high school with Abe's dad. Small world. Anyway, back to the photo above. What a heck of a way to start our fishing trip: two silvers in four minutes of fishing.
And the next couple of hours weren't too bad either. Hey guys, it was nice to spend a couple of days with you. You make me feel like our future is in good hands......

Next week could be it for my guiding season. I'm down to one last group. Although "work" might be over, you know I'll be fishing well into October. 

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Fishing Report Week Ending 9/17/17

It was another steady week of silver salmon fishing on the Kenai River. Here's Michelle with a hefty silver.

Here she is with her husband, Ken, and brother-in-law Rich.
Ken and Rich trying to see who could hold their fish the farthest out. I think Ken won.
And this was the last evening of fishing with the Kovitch's. Too bad Rich decided to stay back in the cabin on this trip. It was a nice little bite going on out there. Hey guys, I look forward to the next time you're back in the Great Land.
Brian, Jeff, and Marshall

Team A.

Sid, Dustin, Learn, and Zack
Team B.

Jared, Clark, James, and Clay

Team C.

Don't know if you caught on to what I just did, but this was my annual fishing trip with the boys of Team ABC Seamless of Anchorage. Thanks Jeff and Brian for bringing the crew down. In addition, I'd like to thank Jeff and Mike for helping me guide these guys to a bunch of silvers. It was a fun couple of days for all.

Can this incredible run of silver salmon continue? I think it can. The only way to know for sure is to come back next week to see if it did. See you then.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Fishing Report Week Ending 9/10/17

The string of daily silver salmon limits ended this past week. I believe it was due to a combination of rising, muddy water, and being in between the mid August and mid September peaks of the salmon run. Oh, it wasn't bad fishing, it was just a lot slower than the previous week.

On Labor Day Monday I had the pleasure of guiding my neighbor Dan, and his friend Rod, who was visiting from Illinois. We had no problem finding a two person limit on this morning, but by the end of the trip the water started to change for the worse. I'm not so sure we would have been able to find enough fish for a full boat of anglers.
On Wednesday, it was good to be back on the water with Jason, Bill, and their friends Brian, and Bob. It was a great morning for getting caught up, but with rising water the fishing was awful. By 10:30am I made the call to end the trip until the afternoon tide came in. For the first couple of hours of our second trip of the day, we didn't have a bite. I was starting to think this would be the first shut out of the silver season. It was desperate times and when Jason requested the lure that he last used in 2010, our luck changed. His first fish was about 10lbs. Not long after, he hooked into this beautiful 16lber
Then it was Brian's turn to catch the twin to Jason's fish.
Bill followed with this nice 14lber.
Bob ended up catching the last one for the day. So, what started out as a day with nothing in the box, ended up with everyone catching at least one salmon.
Day two was a reward for these guys putting in a long, wet day the day before. As you can see, we had our dozen and we were back at the dock by noon.
Day three was a lot like day one, except for less rain. We definitely had to put our time in to find a few willing biters. Jason, Bill, Brian, and Bob, I really appreciate the time we spent on the water. Great conversation, some moments of great fishing (and not so great weather), made for an enjoyable time for me. Hope it's not another seven years until you guys come back...
I didn't have a scheduled trip on Friday, but with the water still being off, I was more than okay with that. I did speak to my neighbor Dan and asked him when Rod was flying back home. He said he was leaving on Saturday. Well, I told him I needed to work on my fishing gear and there's no better way of doing that then sitting on anchor with a couple of kwikfish swimming behind the boat. Did they want to come along? You betcha. In relatively poor fishing conditions this beautiful 12lb silver found Rod's lure. It was nice to send Rod home with another memory of the Kenai.

The water quality improved by Saturday morning and the  river was back on track. Well, at least I thought it was. By 8:30am we had four fish in the box. We fished another seven hours to get three more to bite. Walt, Jeff, and Daniel are all veteran Kenai River fisherman. They know how special this river can be and it was great to swap stories about epic, and not so epic, days on the water. Whether you're in my boat, or your own, I know I'll see you guys again. Thanks for the day.

What do I think the week ahead will look like? I think we'll be able to find fish, but I'm not sure how many. I do know the second run peak is coming soon and it's just a matter of time until it's here. 

Come back next week to see how we're doing.

p.s. My thoughts and prayers go out to my Texas and Florida friends. It's a very difficult time for you all.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Fishing Report Week Ending 9/3/17

It was a quiet week of guiding, but it was another great week of fishing. Well, that's mostly true except for a couple of days that the river became muddy. When the river starts to look like coffee with creamer, the bite usually shuts down. I was very fortunate not to have any trips scheduled on those days.

My week began when my friend Matt brought his visiting family down for a fishing trip. Since they arrived at the cabins early in the afternoon, I told Matt we should go out and whet their appetites before our scheduled trip the next day. Here's Sally, Cole, Travis, and John after a few hours of fishing. Not a bad introduction to the Kenai River and silver salmon fishing.
The next day we went out and had a great morning of fishing. The highlight of the trip was two double doubles. What this means is we caught two silvers at the same time twice. That's Matt in the middle of this photo. I'm sure glad he was on board to help me with the chaos.
The next day I didn't have a trip so it was time to take Jane and Dan out.
And the next day we did it all over again.
Jane couldn't make it the third day so it was just Dan and me. Another day, same results.
I finished the week fishing Team Alpha Roofing & Construction from Wasilla, Alaska. If you notice in the photo, the limit for silver salmon has increased from two to three fish. This regulation went into effect September 1st. Thanks, Tyler, Travis, Crystal, and Justin for a fun morning. And, thanks Bryce for once again sending your employees down for a night in the cabins and a day on the water.

My little respite from guiding ended today and for the next six days I will be fishing. I have a lot of repeat customers, so I'm definitely hoping that the excellent fishing will continue. Come back next week to see if it has. Later!