Alaska Excursions

Alaska Excursions

A wide range of trips throughout Southcentral Alaska.

Iditarod 41

Photos and stories from the last great race.

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Alaska fish species

King salmon (chinook)

While fishing in early July 2002 with Albert Kutzkey, Rachel Lowe caught this 66-pound king salmon on the Kenai River. She caught a 68-pounder from a drift boat the day before.

The king salmon is the largest fish found in Alaska's fresh water, ranging from the southernmost Inside Passage to the Chukchi Sea of Arctic Alaska. It is immensely popular with anglers, especially in Southeast Alaska and on the Kenai Peninsula's rivers and bays.

Directory of fishing guides and charters

Directory of fishing guides and charters

Halibut

The name "halibut" is derived from the Middle English "haly-butte," meaning the flatfish to be eaten on holy days. And Alaskans do revere the halibut.

Red salmon (sockeye)

Alaskans love to eat red salmon, but the red (or sockeye) is the hardest of the state's five species of salmon to catch.

Pink salmon (humpback)

Pink salmon -- also known as humpbacks or humpies because of the males' distinctive physique -- are fun to catch as they return in immense schools. Pinks are important to the state's canning industry.

Silver salmon (coho)

Silver salmon, or cohoes, are fighting fish. Their acrobatics and reel-humming runs make stream and saltwater fishing a thrill.

Rainbow trout

From kids catching 8-inch stocked fish to giddy grownups landing a 30-pounder on a remote stream, rainbow trout are a big part of Alaska's fishing culture.

Northern pike

In the blink of an eye, a rainbow trout found itself in the gullet of a northern pike, one of two kept in an aquarium at state Department of Fish and Game headquarters in Anchorage. In their four months in the tank, the pair consumed 174 fish and grew three inches. The pike were part of Fish and Game's efforts to educate Alaskans about the damage pike can do to native fish and to encourage them to go pike hunting.

Long and aggressive, the northern pike makes a fearsome predator to Alaska's trout and salmon populations in Southcentral Alaska. But in the Minto Flats of the Interior, the pike has become a sought-after trophy.

Steelhead trout

An underwater view shows a steelhead trout caught in the Situk River near Yakutat during April spring fishing.

Steelhead trout are perfect for anglers pursing freshwater fish with saltwater instincts.

Salmon sharks

Salmon sharks take a bite out of Alaska's salmon runs, but they're not at the top of the food chain when fishing charter boats are in the area.

Rockfish

More than 30 species of rockfish live in Alaska's coastal waters. A dozen or more species range as far north as the Bering Sea.

Lingcod

Lingcod -- often considered one of the ugliest fish in the ocean but also one of the tastiest -- are a popular saltwater sportfish usually found in water 30 to 300 feet deep and sometimes 3,000 feet deep.

Burbot

The burbot got its name from the French word "bourbeter," which means "to wallow in mud." And although the burbot, sporting a single chin barbel, is called an ugly fish, its mild white flesh is considered quite tasty.

Whitefish

Whitefish are the most common species north of the Alaska Range. There are eight species, including the sheefish.

Sheefish

The sheefish -- called inconnu (unknown fish) by early explorers and now sometimes called the "arctic tarpon" -- is found only in arctic and subarctic North America and Asia. In Alaska, it is most abundant in the Kuskokwim and Yukon river drainages and in the Selawik and Kobuk drainages of Kotzebue Sound.

Lake trout

Lake trout -- really a variety of char -- take to Alaska's cold lakes.

Arctic grayling

The arctic grayling, with its spots and sail-like dorsal fin, is instantly recognized. The grayling lives in many streams and lakes. It's fun to catch, and its light flesh is tasty.

Arctic char

The arctic char is the most northerly distributed of char and char's closely related cousin, the Dolly Varden.

Dolly Varden

The colorful Dolly Varden is locally abundant in all coastal waters of Alaska.

Brook trout

Brook trout are relative newcomers to Alaska's waters. They are found in Southeast Alaska.

Cutthroat trout

Cutthroat trout are aggressive, as one might guess from their name and red slash mark under the jaw.

Chum salmon (dog)

Chum salmon are colorful as they make their way into fresh water, and a little fearsome with the hooked snout and large teeth of the males.

Travel deals

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Photo Galleries

Bird Treatment and Learning Center hold open house

Petra is a bald eagle that has been with Bird TLC since 1995. Bird Treatment and Learning Center invited the public to visit and learn about bald and golden eagles at its Save the Eagles event on Saturday, January 12, 2013.

Bird Treatment and Learning Center invited the public to visit and learn about bald and golden eagles at its Save the Eagles event on Saturday, January 12, 2013.

Aerials from Birchwood to the Alaska Range

Sunlight sparkles off the braided channels of the Susitna River near the mouth where it empties into Cook Inlet on Sunday, September 9, 2012.

The Susitna Valley and Alaska Range from the air.

A Day along Turnagain Arm

Tracey Knutson steps onto the shore with a salmon near the Twentymile River bridge on Monday, August 13, 2012 along the Seward Highway. Knutson, her son Bergen Knutson, Mike Benoit and dogs Karma and Drake were on a trip up the Twentymile River.

Turnagain Arm mud, trains, kiters and more.

Birds of Summer 2012

A pair of swans float on the still waters of Kashwitna Lake as the sun sets along near the Parks Highway north of Willow on Tuesday, August 14, 2012.

Avion families in the Anchorage area.

Denali Zipline Tour

Alan Campbell zips through the forest. Denali Zipline Tours has 9 ziplines several swinging bridges and a rappel in the forest canopy outside of Talkeetna, AK on Friday, July 27, 2012.

Zipline through the forest canopy outside of Talkeetna, AK.

PHOTO GALLERY

Birds of Spring 2012

Resident and migratory birds are busy feeding, courting and preparing for nesting as spring arrives at thawing Westchester Lagoon, the Cook Inlet shoreline and other ponds and lakes around Anchorage.

PHOTO GALLERY

Baby musk ox

Musk ox mothers stick close to their calves at the Musk Ox Farm in Palmer on Thursday, May 3, 2012. Twelve musk oxen have been born so far this season at the Musk Ox Farm. Staff at the farm are busy combing the animals to gather quviut which will be made into hats and scarves by Oomingmak, a cooperative of craftspeople. The Musk Ox Farm officially opens for the season on Mother's Day, May 13. Mothers are admitted free to the annual open house.

Twelve musk oxen have been born so far this season at the Musk Ox Farm. Staff at the farm are busy combing the animals to gather quviut which will be made into hats and scarves by Oomingmak, a cooperative of craftspeople. The Musk Ox Farm officially opens for the season on Mother's Day, May 13. Mothers are admitted free to the annual open house.

PHOTO GALLERY

Fall Colors

The leaves turn yellow as the fall colors grace Kincaid Park on Saturday, September 24, 2011.

Fall colors in Southcentral Alaska.

Ice climbing along the Turnagain Arm

Scotty Vincik climbs on the PFM ice climb while his partner Matt Suddock belays him along the Seward Highway across from Turnagain Arm on Saturday January 12, 2008.

Recreation is key to surviving Alaska's long, dark winters. Truly ambitious outdoor enthusiasts have pounced on a vault of creative opportunities, including making use of the frozen waterfalls for ice climbing along the Seward Highway.

Sledding

People braved the icy conditions at Russian Jack Springs Park to go sledding on Sunday afternoon, Nov. 14, 2010.

People braved the icy conditions at Russian Jack Springs Park to go sledding on a brisk Sunday afternoon.

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