When it comes to bucket lists, I wholeheartedly believe that anglers have the longest lists of all! How could that be, you ask yourself? Remember that 71% of the earth's surface is covered by water. If an angler spent his life fishing all over the world, he would never be able to catch every species known to man or fish every body of water ever formed. This convincing idea drives anglers of all skill levels to near and far destinations in search of a new challenge. Enter: Ice Fishing in Alaska, "The Last Frontier".
World class salmon fishing. Remote lodges. Rich culture. The allure of adventure in Alaska cannot be matched by any other fishing destination in the USA. I once heard about ice fishing in Alaska, known as "the great balance among fishermen". That means the playing field is balanced. No boat is needed and anyone can venture out onto a frozen lake, drill a hole, sit back and wait for the bite.
You can spot dozens of species such as king salmon, pikeperch, crappie, lake trout and pike. Fairbanks, Matanuska-Susitna Valley ("Mat-su"), and Anchorage are popular areas known for productive ice fishing lakes accessible by roads or trails. For more remote locations, snowmobiles are a convenient means of transportation.
The ideal months for ice fishing in Alaska range from late November to March. When planning your ice fishing in Alaska, be sure to study equipment, techniques, and license regulations. An ice fishing and reel setup is much smaller than a standard combination, but the fishing and baiting methods are comparatively similar to other types of fishing. Many outfitters offer guided tours to save you the time, hassle and investment of doing everything yourself. Hiring a guide is a great option if you are a group of beginners or want to take the kids with you.
If you're still unsure whether an Alaskan ice fishing excursion is right for you, take it while one experience is removed from your bucket list and explore the myriad other adventures awaiting at the Last Frontier!