Copper River near Kokhanok, Alaska
Yes, there are several copper rivers in Alaska but almost without fail when people are talking about the Copper River they are talking about the one on the south side of Lake Ilianna. Did you know the Copper River is one of the only rivers in Alaska that has hatches of mayflies, stoneflies, and caddis? Do you think that is the reason the fish here grow so big (rainbows of 20 inches are not that uncommon)? It might be part of the reason, at least at the beginning of the season, but by the third week of July all action on top of the water is done. Sockeye salmon are the first species to run up the river (there is a total of 5 different species that run up the river) and the rainbows get busy with eggs and dead salmon. Guess which pattern is the best. Its egg pattern in any color and any size just so long as it looks like an egg (I have heard of a guy that uses golf balls; I am not kidding). Flesh flies will also work at this time too. As the season goes on the fish keep getting fatter and fatter. If you want to catch rainbows that are so fat it makes Garfield (the cat) look like a body builder I recommend you come in August and September. The main way to fish the river is to jet (literally, jet boats are the best) up to the first big waterfall and drift downstream fishing gravel bars, pools, stumps, undercut banks, and anything else that might hold fish as you go. I recommend you hire a guide to fish here because you do not want to spend your vacation trying to figure out where the fish are; all you have to do is figure out how to catch another fish without your arms falling off. As one last note the river can be really crowed so this is not the place to come for solitude. If you are looking for that fish above the falls where you can find tons of grayling from 12 to 20 inches long swimming around. Good luck fishing!
Copper River Fishing near Kokhanok, Alaska
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Details for Copper River
Species Caught Here:
Access: Public Property
Body of Water Type: Stream
Lat/Long: 59.526943 -154.518326
Bodies of Water near Copper River
Description for Copper River, Lake and Peninsula Borough, Alaska
Copper River is a stream located just 10.9 miles from Kokhanok, in Lake and Peninsula Borough, in the state of Alaska, United States. Fishermen will find a variety of fish including rainbow trout, chum salmon, arctic grayling, pink salmon and chinook salmon here. Whether you’re fly fishing, baitcasting or spinning your chances of getting a bite here are good. So grab your favorite fly fishing rod and reel, and head out to Copper River.
For Fishing License purchase, fishing rules, and fishing regulations please visit Alaska Fish & Wildlife
Please remember to check with the local Fish and Wildlife department to ensure the stream is open to the public. Now get out there and fish! Check out our Fishing Times
chart to determine when the fish will be most active.
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