Category Archives: Yakutat

Some Good Reports Today

Getting some better reports from off the Situk today.  One frequent flier said this was the first day they were able to land fish after fish like “normal”.  They did have access to a jet-boat though.  Prior to today,  the fish were jumping all around them,  but so scattered that you couldn’t get many.  Today was different.  Water flow is still over 700 CFS,  but looking better.

Report from someone off the ocean…  They went out with a charter boat and hit their halibut limit by 10am.  Then were able to limit on silvers too.  They were in the shop around 3pm,  so it didn’t take them long to do all that and be back here again.

Report from some day fishermen on the Italio…  OK,  but not that great.  They had to work very hard to land 4 fish…  They worked down at the mouth and walked upstream as the tide pushed in.  So things are still pretty weak out there,  but at least it is fishable and not completely blown out (like some other rivers we know and love…).


Slow Around Here

What a slow day!  Not much traffic through the shop.  A relatively nice day out,  so I think most people were busy fishing instead of thinking about fishing in a fly shop.  Occasional showers,  but not so much to prevent the river from dropping.  Flow is down to 736 CFS tonight.  Getting better and better…

Without much business,  we cracked open the case of Gravenstein apples my mom sent us and I baked an apple pie.  It is late and I’m too tired to wait for it to cool.  It’ll make a great breakfast in the morning though,  while waiting for the ACE plane at 330am…



Here we Go Again

Although our 10 inches of rain from Monday to Wednesday didn’t happen,  we did get between 4-5 inches in the first round,  had a gorgeous sunny day today and now we have a new front moving in to dump another inch or more overnight.  They are calling for the rains to subside by mid-morning,  but we’ll see what actually happens.  It just started raining a few minutes ago,  to match the driving blustery winds we have had for several hours.  Here is the front moving in about an hour ago:


We had 70+ degree temperatures all day today,  with a heavy muggy feeling.  The hangar bay dripped and sweated all day,  making everything drenched inside,  while it was gorgeous outside.  The tile in the bathrooms were sweating.  Tonight about 8pm,  the temp began dropping and we went outside to watch the front move in quickly.

The 9 Mile Gage stopped broadcasting at 830p tonight,  with a flow level still way up at 970 CFS,  down from over 1,200 this morning.  One sunny day doesn’t dry the ground out,  so tonight’s rain will definitely bring the rivers up high.  The (not good news,  but) better news is that it will dry out tomorrow and we’ll just have showers for the rest of the week.  If the forecasts are right and what are the odds…?


It was a weird,  uncomfortable and anxious feeling day today.  If this was the mid-west,  it would have seemed like tornadoes were on their way.  Well,  at least we don’t have to deal with that stuff up here…

In the meantime,  I was supposed to send my mom some fish last month for her to take to my grandmother. They were planning to have salmon for lunch and I…  forgot.  OOPS!  So in honor of them and their missed lunch,  I made myself a fresh roasted sockeye fillet sandwich with my pesto sauce on it.  Yum!


This is what they missed…  Extra sharp white cheddar and avocado slices topped it off.

And a little over a week ago,  we came back from Juneau in the 206,  with a DC-3 parked on the ramp.  Tanis kept asking me if he could take ours out of the hangar over and over and I told him NO.  What did he do???  OK,  just Trans Northern with a passenger flight.  He got to fuel it though and pull our DC-3 tow bar out and put it to use.  Here it is leaving the next morning:


Trans Northern parked on the ramp with their similar color scheme to our N91314


Waiting to taxi out,  with the Alaska Jet coming off at Alpha


Ours is safe and sound in her bed


Well,  need to be up at 330am as usual,  so that’s all for tonight.  Stay warm and dry tonight.

Doom and Gloom?

Ya…  not so much.  Weather Service is saying we have had up to 1.5 inches of rain overnight,  but the Situk’s flow is only at 802 CFS as of 12:30pm.  Rains will continue through today,  but taper off and become showers Tuesday morning.  Tuesday night they become heavy again and taper again Wed AM.  Calling for storm total of 5-7 inches now,  half of what they were expecting…

So it isn’t looking quite as bad as it was.  Yes,  this is still a lot of rain and it sure looks miserable outside my window right now (I like to whine about being stuck in the fly shop instead of out fishing,  but that doesn’t look like a bad thing right now…).

YCA Update

Hans flew the Otter back into the airport at 4:13pm tonight.  They have some more fine-tuning to do with the new engine,  but looking like they will be back to full operation shortly.  Now we just need to weather the storm,  but it is still calm and dry at the moment…

Tanis and I flew out to get our boat pulled back to the cabin.  I managed to forget to bring the camera,  so no photos of the river mouths out there this season…  Saw the Otter still on the beach with lights blinking and prop turning,  but engine cowls were off.  Flying over the Old Italio,  there were two small pods of fish (less than a dozen total),  so still not looking too hot on the Old.  I talked to Pat out there and he said they fished it and those pods were just humpies.

We passed over the Middle Italio and it was still too dark to really see into the water.  It looked like hordes of fishermen though with the Italio River Adventures group and the guys renting the Forest Service cabin all fishing down at the mouth.  I’d assume they were catching fish,  but I couldn’t see any from above.

We landed,  filled gas cans and headed to the boat.  Our trailer tire was flat,  so had to go back to the cabin again and get Green Slime and the pump.  Once the tire was up,  we launched the skiff and headed up the Akwe.  As we headed out,  we stirred up a few fish,  but they were clearly just humpies there,  where we park the boat…

We drove up the Akwe to deliver something to John Latham’s camp and to say hi to Chris.  He wasn’t there,  so we dumped and left.  Jetting up and back down to the mouth,  I only spotted one fish jumping and one small pod of silvers that were up on a shallow shelf.  The Akwe is still black and you couldn’t see anything in the deep holes.  Maybe there are fish there,  but I didn’t see much.  New Italio is clearing up nicely,  but it was just those humpies that we saw.

Pulled the boat out at the mouth and towed it back to the cabin without any problems.  Back in the plane,  we headed home,  seeing the Otter was gone and Hans’ helicopter in its place.  Yay!

Early Sept Update

Two beautiful sunny days in a row is helping to drop the flooded rivers pretty quickly.  Flow on the Situk is 586 CFS right now and continues to drop.  Winds are picking up a bit already and we’re expecting the heavy rains to start later tonight.  Tanis and I are going to fly out to the Italio cabin right now and make sure all our stuff is safe,  before we have a week of very high full-moon tides,  a storm surge and heavy flooding all at the same time…

Flow chart right now:


Weather warning for the first half of the week:


This’ll be fun!

Hangar Storage and the Future

We have been utilizing the WWII hangar bay for winter storage for 10 years now.  As I have tried to warn from the beginning,  eventually we would be phasing out of the storage business,  as we progress with the renovation and utilize the hangar for other things.  Well,  we’re finally reaching that point.


What our empty hangar looked like in 1942…


Winter is the only time I have available to make progress on the renovation. Unfortunately,  with the hangar bay completely packed with storage,  I can’t move or function during my limited window to make progress.  We’ll be done with the first phase of construction shortly as we finish the first 8,000 square feet of renovation and next year we will be ready to move on to the bigger hangar bay portion of the project.

I can’t do construction with all the boats,  cars and totes filling the space.  Therefore,  we will be ending all public storage by fall 2018.  That gives everyone a full year to make other arrangements.  What other arrangements are there?

I have been asking other locals to take on storage to no avail.  I had two different people commit to building either an open pole barn,  or a dried-in heated space.  Neither ever followed through unfortunately.  There is a great business opportunity for someone out there willing to put up some sort of shelter to keep snow off cars and boats,  as well as a small gear storage facility like we have done with the totes.  I hope someone steps up and does something.

Both Glacier Bear and Leonard’s Landing have built large sheds over the past couple years,  but I do not know if they can accommodate more than what they already have in there.  You are welcome to call them and at least ask.

No,  I am not making any special exceptions…  We will be done by this time next year.  I want my hangar back.  I do appreciate the support and revenue you have given us through the years,  but we all knew this time was approaching.  I will try to help facilitate any moves,  or anyone who wants to start a productive and profitable business here.  There is a definite need for seasonal storage here in Yakutat.


What our empty hangar looks like with just my crap in it…