The famous native Alaskan Leopard Rainbows here in the Valley have a very unique life. The season for fishing bows usually starts late April or Early May and ends around late September to early October. Its not because they stop feeding or because fish and game shuts it down,rather its due to weather. As everybody knows, it gets cold in Alaska. Some parts colder than others but, due to the temperatures in Northern Alaska, all the creeks freeze shut. So, as fall starts to ease into winter and the creeks start to drop and get colder, the trout and grayling all move out of their summer homes and into the Big Susitna River. The holes are deeper in the Big Sue and so the fish are able to sustain life through the winter. The trout and grayling live off mainly insects and sculpin during the winter but it is hardly a meal.
Susitna Valley fall rainbow.
Knowing that the fish have a long winter ahead of them, they have to stock up on food for fat storage (energy) during the winter when food is scarce. Kind of like the bears before hibernation. Luckily, for us fly fishing addicts, fall fish can be out of control without the crowds of summer tourists. During the fall season, the fish are trying to stuff their faces with food, mainly eggs and flesh, and gain pounds on pounds. This also means good chances for a trophy rainbow.
So while people get to enjoy fly fishing year around in the lower 48, we here in the Valley resort to tying flies and watching our library of fish porn again and again during the cold winter months.