Tag Archives: Yakutat

Too Miserable for Chris

Chris said he was going fishing today.  And…  nope.  The river flow is going through the roof and we’re looking at another 4 inches of rain before the storm ends.  The gage is broken,  so no accurate flow rate,  but it is heading straight up.

“The Boys” did go fishing at the lower end just as the last storm hit.  Flow then was still under 100 and the water temp crashed again to 35 degrees.  They didn’t see anything.  It has been a week of constant sleet since then,  turning to real rain last night.

Cody and Kraig from the Lodge started cutting logjams yesterday with Frank’s help and guidance.  They were able to clear the mega-jam in the Rodeo Hole,  but will be taking some time off until the river stops rising.  They didn’t “see” anything in the river yesterday,  but the water was rising fast and pretty opaque.  This flood should start some fish coming in,  providing the temperature stays high enough.

Chris sent me some photos of the Rodeo logjam and I’ll post that mess as soon as I find where  saved them to.  Otherwise,  no real news yet…

Early March Conditions

Yes,  I do have a fishing report!  Not a good one,  but I have one!  The boys (which didn’t include me) went upstream above the bridge.  VERY low water down to around 70 CFS.  Water temp on the gage topped out at 37 degrees,  but Chris’ two thermometers showed 38 (attached to his foot) and the infrared hand-held read 40.  Keep in mind,  you’ll gain about 4 degrees from the bridge to the take-out on a sunny day.

They did not see any fish anywhere.  It was overcast for most of the morning,  so no bright sun and glare on the water.  Just no fish anywhere visible.  The water temp seems to be up into the bottom end of the desired range,  but just not enough water to draw them in.

I suspect we have steelhead down at the estuary that will come in on the tide and then flee back to the estuary as the water drops out.  But no one went down there to fish this time.

It is still sunny at the moment,  but that is supposed to turn to rain after 3pm,  with a mix of rain and snow throughout the coming week.  We’ll see what it looks like after we see some precip.

Winters in Yakutat

Pretty slow around here and hard to get motivated to do much (including blog).  But tonight is a very full moon rising over the end of runway 20.  And through all my heavy insulation in the hangar office,  you can hear the wolves howling.  They have been doing it for about a half hour now.  Life in Yakutat year ’round can be hard,  but moments like this put it all in perspective and remind me why I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

And on that note…  Chris came back from Colorado about a week ago and immediately went fishing.  Well,  he went hiking anyway…  Hiked about 3/4th of the way up to the closure boundary and did not see a single fish.  Bummer for him,  but good news for the steelheaders coming later in April and May.  There are a handful of fish scattered around (I heard two of the 5 in the bridge hole were landed,  but those fish have vaporized),  but the run is not even close to starting to show.  Nothing like two years ago,  where February was pretty darned good and the run was basically over by mid-April…

Having some sleet and slush falling,  but not accumulating much.  Still a near zero snowpack,  which will make the river temp rise very quickly once we do see the warmth of April.  That is unless we get a big dumping,  which often happens in March.  Last year,  we had more fish in the river in Feb than we do now,  but 3 feet of late snow in March stalled the run and it ended up being relatively close to on-time.

Chris said the river looked perfect for fishing.  Good flow,  decent temperature.  Just no fish to be had.

And message to Doug Pautz and Wesley Reynolds…  Check your spam folders…  I answered your messages,  but I don’t think you got the reply…

Prelim Spring Steelhead Update

Yes,  we’re still alive.  That 3-week flu in November really set me back,  followed by holidays and Tanis coming home from school and then taxes…  But all that is behind us and now we’re just waiting for some warmth.

Warning right off the bat…  we have literally ZERO snow.  None.  The little we did have all rained off this past week.  Flows hit around 500 and water temp hit 37.  Should have some steelhead in the river under those conditions,  but no one has been out to check.  Chris comes back in a week,  so he’ll get me a real report.  Who knows,  maybe I’ll actually go fishing for the first time in over a year…

With no snow,  I’d expect this to be another early run.  Short of some major snow event(s),  we won’t have much to keep the spring rains cooler and hold off the spawning.  Looking a lot like two years ago when we peaked around the 1st of April and by May,  the run was done.  Been VERY cold for a couple weeks (with all my water pipes frozen solid at the hangar),  and with no snow insulation,  the lakes are pretty solid.  So expect spring fish to be early and winter fish to be late getting out of the lake.

But there is snow throughout the coming week’s forecast.  Is that enough?  Doesn’t look like it.  Coming in inches,  not feet.  No major winter storm warnings in the foreseeable future.

OK,  back to cleaning my office,  putting spring fly shop orders together and thawing the pipes (again).  This morning, we have half the water running,  but not to the bathroom with the shower,  or the laundry.

My Only 1st-Hand Fishing Report

Night before last,  Patrick came through the shop with a fresh report…  I would have posted this earlier,  but I’m suffering through a really bad cold/flu and have been in bed most of the past week.

So he went down and fished hard down at the lower landing end of the river.  Chased some fish around,  but didn’t touch any.  I haven’t had any success in this fall season down there.  Seems as though these fall steelhead are in a hurry to get upstream and don’t slow down enough to have much success in the lower river.  And his efforts were rewarded by getting charged in the dark by a sow with cubs…  So we still have some bears on the river.

Next day,  he went to the bridge and had better success.  First cast in the bridge hole,  he had a steelhead hammer his bead.  He said he was excited to have a hot fishing day ahead of him.  Unfortunately for a long time,  that was his only hit…  Water was clear,  low and had become pretty cold after a few days of deep freezing clear nights.  Then it started to rain…

The moment the raindrops started hitting the surface,  the bite was on.  He said it was a fish on nearly every cast.  A mix of dollies,  resident rainbows,  steelhead and one huge silver.  Then it got dark and he had to get to the shop before we closed…

So that is the ONLY fishing report I have had.  Right now,  we have one guy at the Forest Service cabins,  three guys in a jet-boat,  Patrick,  two guys arrived last night and two more on today’s morning flight.  There were a couple extra cars in the 9 Mile parking lot,  but the people weren’t seen anywhere…  Pretty quiet.

It has now changed back to rain – well,  scattered showers.  Warmer,  so water temp is back to being perfect.  Flow right at 300 CFS.  Just about perfect conditions through the weekend,  with heavier rain coming Sunday night…

Yakutat Land Sale November, 2018

The City and Borough of Yakutat is selling 5 lots located along Ocean Cape Road.  Two are directly on Ocean Cape Road,  while three are back behind on a platted,  but non-existent Water Tank Loop Road.  The “water tank” in question is upland from the Delta Western bulk facility.  These lots are along the road to the Ankau,  less than a quarter mile past The Mooring Lodge,  Delta Western and the AC grocery store.

CBYLandSale

The deadline for the initial offering is December 3rd,  2018.  Before placing a bid,  check to see how far away basic utilities are from the lots.  My guess is they are within easy reach,  since the West and South Additions are beyond these lots and you can tie into water and sewer relatively easily compared to some of the other properties offered lately.  These look like pretty good lots!  Zoned “industrial”,  you can pretty much do anything you want with them…

Here is the complete packet on PDF:

CBY Land sale Nov 2018 (2)

Ideal Conditions this Week

I still have not talked to anyone off the river.  Just a handful of people heading out to fish as they arrived.  So no actual first-hand reports.  But…

The snow we were supposed to see Friday night didn’t happen.  Just a brief flurry before turning to a light drizzle.  An occasional shower this weekend,  but nothing cold enough to stick.  The cooler weather did drop the water temp into the ideal range for the past 4 days,  which should be attracting fresh steelhead into the system.  Flows are still looking really good with it hanging at 224CFS right now.

Everything is just looking spectacular on paper right now for the bridge area.  Weather forecast is for sunny and partly cloudy skies through the early part of the coming week,  with another chance of snow beginning Wednesday.  Showing a mix of rain and snow Thursday where the forecast ends.

Looking so much better than last year’s deep cold that shut the river down this week.