Rainbow Trout Fishing In Alaska

Get ready for Alaska rainbow trout fishing with tips and top fishing spots

Also see Alaska trout fishing

rainbow trout fishing in AlaskaThere is nothing as exciting for anglers than the thrill of rainbow trout fishing in Alaska.  For its size, the rainbow trout is admired like no other fish in the area. 

Every year hordes of sport fishermen are drawn to the rivers and lakes that are home to these colorful acrobatic fish and each wants to try their hand at rainbow trout fishing in Alaska. 

Big, graceful and prone to gravity defying leaps, Alaska's rainbow trout are widely varied and found in abundance, providing eager anglers with the best trout fishing in the world.  

Though some anglers may wish to keep their catch as a trophy or for eating, the majority of Alaska's sport fishermen practice the catch and release policy when rainbow trout fishing.  Anglers should be aware that some waters are strictly catch and release only.  For those who intend to make a meal of their catch, rainbow trout has mildly flavored and tender orangey pink flesh that can be baked, grilled, fried or broiled. 

The rich environment of Alaska's waters provides the ideal habitat for rainbow trout.  The abundance of food and pristine water presents a situation where rainbow trout fishing in Alaska can yield the biggest and best fish.  Generally, brightly hued or metallic colored spinners, spoons, plugs and egg-pattern flies work well for catching rainbows.   Bait is not widely used and there are regulations concerning the use of artificial lures only in some areas.

Tips For Rainbow Trout Fishing In Alaska - Identifying The SpeciesAlaska Rainbow Trout, Alaskan Rainbow Trout, rainbow trout fishing in Alaska

The rainbow trout is easily identified as its appearance is unmistakable.  However, there are slight physical changes in the species determined by sex, location and maturity.  For example, rainbow trout found in rivers or streams have significantly heavier spotting and show more intense midline stripes than rainbows found in lakes.     

Rainbows have silver or grayish sides, backs that range in color from olive to bluish green and white bellies with white or light pink belly fins.  But the rainbow trout is best identified by a wide stripe of brilliant red, pink or pale violet color along the midline and a scattering of small to mid size black spotted markings that cover the upper sides and tailfin.  The average rainbow weighs in at around 2 or 3 pounds, but it's common for catches to reach over 10 pounds in some of Alaska's larger lakes and rivers.  Record catches have weights that are over 20 pounds.

Spawning season brings some change in coloration and physical traits, but the spawning transformation for rainbow trout is not as dramatic as that of salmon.

Best Locations For Rainbow Trout Fishing in Alaska

Areas in the Southwest for Rainbow Trout Fishing

Kuskokwim:  Aniak, Goodnews, Arolik, Kisaralik, Kwethluk, Kanektok Rivers

Bristol Bay:  Nushagak-Mulchatna, Lower Togiak, Lake Iliamna-Kvichak River Systems,  Wood River, Tikchik, Nuyakuk Lakes, Lower Tikchik River

Alaska Peninsula:  Naknek Lake, Egegik, Alagnak, River Systems

South Central locations for Rainbow Trout Fishing

Kenai:  Russian, Kenai, Anchor, Upper Moose Rivers, Jean, Kelly, Wik, Cecille, Stormy, Encelewski, Peterson, Forest, Rainbow, Longmere, Dolly Varden, Swanson, Ohmer, Watson, Mosquito, Douglas, Barbara, Daniels, Paddle, Grant, Vagt, Russian Lakes

Kodiak:  Uganik, Saltery, Olga, Long, Woody Lakes

Cook Inlet:  Beluga, Theodore, Chuitna Rivers

Anchorage: Otter Lake, Campbell Creek

Wrangell:  Tolsona, Silver, Sculpin, Crater, Van, Tex Smith Lakes, Tebay, Upper Gulkana River Systems

Chugach: Worthington, Blueberry Lakes

Mat-Su Valley:  Echo, Irene, Reed, Kepler, Long, Knik, Dawn, Ravine, Marion, Lynne, Crystal, Florence, Nancy, Honeybee, Reed, Seymour, Kalmbach,Wolf, Matanuska Lakes

Susitna:  Upper Susitna, Upper Talkeetna, East Fork Chulitna, Deshka, Talachulitna River Systems, Little Willow, Peters, Montana, Sheep, Lake, Upper Kashwitna Creeks

Spots for Rainbow Trout Fishing in the Southeast

Sitka, Wrangell and Petersburg:  Thoms, Boulder, Anan, Red, Avoss, Davidof, Swan, Salmon, Reflection, Petersburg, Sukoi, Plotnikof, Goat, Politofsky, Gar, Marten, Sitkoh, Grebe Lakes

Yakutat:  Situk Lake

Klawock, Prince of Wales:  Gulf of Esquibel, Bucareli Bay

Juneau and Skagway:  Peterson, Dewey, Hoktaheen, Surge Lakes

Ketchikan and Prince of Wales Island:  Kegan, Hugh Smith, Ketchikan, Nakat, Rainbow, McDonald, Harriet Hunt, Sarkar, Connell Lakes, Thorne, Karta, Naha Rivers