My Dad has been fishing across Alaska for almost two decades. After filling our heads with tales of monster halibuts and ferocious King salmon, the family finally decided we needed to go see for ourselves if the legendary stories were true. So, about eight years ago we started the trek to the northern most part of the US to begin what has evolved into our annual family event.
Over these past years our family and friends have stayed in various lodges in places such as Craig and Gustavus, but our favorite place by far has turned out to be Islandview Resort and Charters in Sitka, Alaska.
Our recent stay this year was our second visit and once again Islandview did not disappoint. The lodge itself is a bit rustic but beautiful with large picture windows framing the amazing view of the bay. You can sit in your townhouse living room, in front of the fire, and watch the fishing boats come in as the enormous sea lions cue up to greet the boats and wait for their share of the day’s catch. You can also look out over the bay while enjoying the hot tub on your back deck.
Each morning the lodge provides breakfast before you leave at 5 am for your full day at sea. It’s a great way to start your day off right. Then it’s a quick change into your rain gear (which the lodge provides) and then down to the docks and off you go; you won’t be returning to the lodge for another 10 to 12 hours. These full days on the ocean are the best part of the trip: spending time with your family and the crew as you search for the absolute best place to limit-out on Silvers (cohos), Kings, rockfish (Brown Bombers), and halibut (butts).
Trust me, the crew at Islandview knows what they are doing – it always amazes me how they can put us right on top of where the fishing is hot. In my opinion this is where Islandview really excels: their captains and crew. These guys, with nicknames like Gooch and Bones, are some of the friendliest, nicest, and most knowledgeable fishermen you will ever have the pleasure to spend a day with. Trust me, I am not “a natural” out on the ocean, but within a short time under their tutelage I’m casting, reeling, and catching like I’ve been doing this all my life (even if I am a left-hander).
Kevin (Islandview’s owner) and all the crew and staff will do everything possible to make your stay at this lodge one of the best experiences of your life. This is why my family plans to return again next year. The Alaskan scenery is breath-taking and the wildlife will have you grabbing for your cameras, but it’s the hospitality of Islandview Resort and Charters that truly makes this lodge a stand-out.
One bit of advice: take advantage of the kitchens that are part of each suite of townhouses at Islandview. Food in Sitka is pricey and we have not found it to be particularly good (we’ve had some unfortunate experiences with Chinese take-out and soggy delivery pizza). Islandview does not provide dinner (except a cookout on the last night), so this year our family brought plenty of staples with us to feed a dozen people. Its well worth the trouble and you will be much happier with your own hotdogs and burgers (FYI, there is also a grocery store nearby and Islandview will lend you a van to do any local shopping you might need). Also, do make time to walk-through Sitka; it’s a quaint fishing village/town and it’s worth at least one stroll during your stay.
- Also Known As:
- IslandView Resort And Charters Sitka, Alaska