19 Jul The Chum
The Chum Salmon – One of Alaska’s most underrated fish
Dog, calico, or chum…… call them what you will; we’ll call them awesome. Aniak River Chum Salmon, which storm up the Aniak in droves every summer, are some of the most explosive and aggressive gamefish that our guests will tie into. Combine their reckless abandon attitude and brawn with a complexion reminiscent of a 1960’s disco outfit, and you can see why it is easy to become a chum-fanatic.
Being as they are typically so eager to bite, chum salmon provide anglers a unique opportunity to choosetheir angling method. You want to strip steamers? Perfect. Maybe try a little top water action? You got it! Regardless of your piscatorial taste, just about any method that you can concoct will produce a great day of fishing. While chums are not known to be picky, fishing with flies that have a lot of color and flash will bump up your numbers a bit. Chums strike aggressively and territorially, often viciously crushing any gaudy pattern crossing its path. 2-4 inch flies in pink, purple, cerise, or chartreuse are among our favorites.
Chums can be found holding in various locations all throughout the river as they migrate up the Aniak. Being a species that generally prefers the path of least resistance, chums can be found stacked up behind gravel bars, log jams, and well up into backwater sloughs. Focus your efforts in these “froggy-water” type areas and find yourself hooking into chums all day long.
Even though they are not the most respected table fare, the chum salmon definitely ranks among the top of our favorite species to chase around the Aniak with a fly rod. So, next time you are out fishing, do yourself a favor and take a little time to get up close and personal with a few chums.