Kenai River Alaska Fly Fishing Guides
October 1, 2019 @ 8:38 AM

It's been tough pulling off fishing days on the water this season with the Swan Lake Fire knocking at the door and dense smoke ruining much of the window of opportunity.  So finding some nice fish before winter closes in sure feels good.  The Upper Kenai River and access through the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge is finally open including Jim's Landing and Upper Skilak Landing.

Fall 2019 Upper Kenai River Rainbow

"Big Bow" Cheryl and Frank Scheitler have been fishing with Mystic Waters for 20 years.  They were not going to miss out this season, despite having to wait until October to squeeze out a trip after the fire.

After the Swan Lake Fire, big rainbows as usual.

If you are hungering for some late season action. Stacy will be working the river as long as the weather lets him.&...

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September 22, 2019 @ 9:44 AM

Its a relief to be back to Kenai River Fly Fishing. After lots of disruption and lots of stress and concern over basic survival, Stacy is back in the drift boat saddle again.  He's been on the water for the past 10 days and will keep on rolling as long as the fall lasts.  


A few hot spots are still burning, but by and large the Swan Lake fire will fade away as fall rains and cooling temps do their thing.  Eventually, a layer of snow will finish it off.  Check out this article from the September 15th Anchorage Daily News for more details about the impact of the fires.

Next summer, the burn in the background will be covered in fresh green and blooming with fireweed.  

The Dolly Varden ...

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August 30, 2019 @ 1:34 AM

Stacy is not going down without a fight.  The Swan Lake Fire has really put the hurt on this season.  Check out the latest from Anchorage KTUU.

Swan Lake Fire Defense in Cooper Landing Alaska

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August 28, 2019 @ 4:35 PM

As Kenai River guides, we prefer to extol the virtues of fly fishing the Kenai River.  As we roll into the fall and our favorite time of the year, we are hoping to survive the Swan Lake Fire.  Cooper Landing has past "ready" status and is uncomfortably situated at "Set" status.  That means "Set" to "GO".  Many residents have moved cars, boats and important personal items to safer locations.  If the word "Go" is issued, that means mandatory evacuation.  Something we are desperately hoping not to hear.

Swan Lake Fire Aerial

Long term repeat guests, friends, new guests: We are in an unprecedented situation dealing with a true disaster. We are not only, unable to fish the prime ...

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June 22, 2019 @ 2:35 PM

Upper Kenai River Sockeye Salmon

Ken Sutton and sons Adam and Matt enjoyed their first trip to the Mystic Lodge.  They landed plenty of sockeye salmon on the Upper Kenai River.

There are a lot of Salmon this June

June 19, 2:58 PM Stacy says “Processors are overloaded, freezers are at capacity, no one can handle any more fish.”  That’s the bad news for anglers trying to get fish vacuum sealed and frozen in Cooper Landing, Alaska.  The good news is that the salmon are plentiful and the limit is high.  There is no need to kill your limit, especially if you don’t need or have a way to care for all those fish.  Make sure you take only what you need.  Anglers need to impose their own limits on how much they are actually ...

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June 18, 2019 @ 2:01 PM

The bag limit on the Russian River and Upper Kenai from Skilak Lake to markers 300 yards upstream from Sportsman’s Landing will increase to nine fish per day starting at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday June 19.  45,000 Sockeye have been counted past the weir on the Russian River since June 7.  That’s more than were counted in last year’s entire run.  The escapement goal for the run is 22-42,000 sockeye.  With the surplus available, sport fishers get a bonus. The 9 fish limit will remain in effect through July 7.

Sockeye Salmon

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June 11, 2019 @ 3:31 PM

Today is opening day and along with the excitement of a new season and great weather, we got some great news for anglers.  The Russian River Sanctuary is opening tomorrow. Not only does the opening mean fish are abundant, but it moves anglers up from the Kenai / Russian confluence and makes more space for fly fishers on down the Kenai River.

Soldotna – The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) is implementing the following sport fishing regulation liberalization by opening the Russian River Sanctuary area early for anglers to sport fish for sockeye salmon. This regulatory change is effective 8:00 a.m. Wednesday, June 12 through 11:59 p.m. Sunday, July 14, 2019. 

Abundant sockeye means more food will be ...

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October 29, 2018 @ 4:52 PM

Its a wrap.  The 2018 season at Mystic Waters Fly Fishing concluded on October 5th with the final day of the North 40 Fly Shop group from Great Falls Montana.  

The first day started in a fog, but soon broke into a beautiful golden fall day.

Beautiful October Weather

As usual, many fish were hooked and many of the biggest ones evaded capture.  Those fall Kenai Rainbows are not to be trifled with.

Marv Bow

The Middle Kenai was still producing lots of great trout.

Swinging on the scenic Upper Kenai River.

The Upper Kenai was low and clear.  Ideal for swinging flies for trout, colorful char and silver salmon.

Upper Kenai River Silver Salmon

Stacy and Simmons gave it their all for 117 days.  Then they needed to get their hands on a couple of those special Kenai River fish.

Stacy and Simmons with an October Kenai River Rainbow.

It's different now.

View toward Kenai Lake from the Mystic Lodge


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September 28, 2018 @ 4:47 PM

When I was a little kid, I was almost killed by a largemouth bass.  I was a camper at Camp Warren on Half Moon Lake near Virginia Minnesota.  I was 10 years old.  This is what I remember.

Before dinner, we generally had some free time.  I always used that time to go fishing.  I dashed down to the dock at the end of camp.  The dock extended out into a bed of reeds.  There were sometimes bass in those reeds.  I flung out a Hula Popper on my Zebco 202 and proceeded to chug.  The biggest bass I’d ever seen exploded on it.  It was a struggle.  There was lots of plastic drag screeching and fiberglass bending, but somehow the line held and it was time to land my trophy.

There was a row...

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September 25, 2018 @ 10:10 AM

Spring rolls into summer and summer rolls into fall rather quickly in the far north.  Before we know it, the end of our season on the Mystic Waters is just around the corner.  But the final days are always special.  The weather may be fickle.  Amazing one day and brutal the next.  But the fish...

Kenai River Rainbow Trout Fall 2018

Tony Melton has been fishing with Mystic Waters since 2001.  He came to us with the goal of catching a 30" Kenai River Rainbow.  He got a 31" bow his very first day.  Even though he achieved his dream within hours, we have been fortunate to host Tony for many Mystic Waters days over the years and we look forward to each and every visit.

Male Kenai River Rainbow Fall 2018

Just a couple more weeks of hosting guests on our ...

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