Those who catch and release today, will catch and release another day
September 16, 2010
- Chena River
- lunchtime leisure
FORT WAINWRIGHT, Alaska - Taking some time out of lunch along the Chena River, I had the opportunity to do some fishing just upstream from the bridge near the Chena Bend Golf Course. Apparently well used, the public access area had a fair amount of fish action going on. With my lightweight fly rod and an old beat up #14 size elk hair caddis fly, I did pretty good catching and releasing three grayling in around 30 minutes.
The Chena River, which winds through Fort Wainwright property, supports many easily accessible fishing areas and the grayling are there for the patient angler, showing an unexpected amount of vigor pound for pound on light tackle. Chena access areas across post are great for taking a short fishing trip during the day.
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game established a catch-and-release regulation to protect arctic grayling in the Chena River. The regulations allow artificial, single hook lures only, no bait. Using medium-sized hooks and releasing your catch in the water help the recovery of the fish after an enjoyable play on-line.
If you would like to have a chance to eat some of your catch, check out some of the stocked ponds established along the Chena Hot Springs Road at mileposts 30, 42.8, 45.5 and 47.9. The ponds are stocked with grayling and rainbow trout which are not all limited to catch-and-release; but check with the 2010 Sport Fish Regulations pamphlet online before choosing a spot.
You can find the regulations page at http://www.admin.adfg.state.ak.us/license/regulations.html. Don't forget your license and RAP card from the post visitor's center if you plan to fish on Wainwright property. Fall is a great time for fishing; the bugs are down and as the fish begin moving downstream to winter areas, your chances of getting new fish in the same fishing spots are good. Fish on!