Spey fishing Alaska is beginning to be more the norm than the oddity. We have been honing our skills on this two handed technique for years and love the how we can move a whole lot of line with very little effort. This two handed cast is ideal for fishing the “swing” on the Alagnak River. King, silver, pink, and chum salmon all will hit this presentation, and in many cases, it is even more effective than the traditional single handed rod. The Alagnak River has shallow sand bars that are ideal to fish the spey rod. The key component to casting the spey rod is to have moving water while wading. This is easy to achieve on the Alagnak with the gentle current and firm bottom. It is difficult to do this from a boat, due to the height off the water you are in versus having the water at your thigh level.
Spey flies and lines are a bit different from the single handed flies we use. The spey cast works much better with flies that have very little or no weight, accompanied with a weighted line. This enables the cast from the spey rod to launch balanced line combinations much further than a single handed rod. The “skagit” lines and compact lines have really made a huge difference to the effectiveness of the spey cast. These new lines enable the spey rod fisherman to launch, and shoot a roll cast with much less effort than a single handed rod. This has been a game changer and we cannot wait to get back on the Alagnak River for more salmon on the fly, or should I say swing!