The Fly Out Team had an opportunity to visit Talaheim Lodge this past July for a week of fishing, filming, and enjoying the home style hospitality and family atmosphere of a genuine Alaska bush lodge. Owner Mark Miller has been operationg the lodge on the Talachulitna River in Alaska since 1976. Much has changed since Talaheim's humble beginnings, as the lodge has expanded their adventures to what Mark has coined, "Heli-Fish Alaska, New Zealand Style!" The helicopters open up the doors for anglers to access the small streams that are inaccessible by boat or float plane. These unfished waters are the cornerstone for Talaheim's fishing program, and it really is an experience you cannot find many other places in Alaska. The fish are wild, there are no crowds, and the experience is genuine to the spirit of the Last Frontier.
What really impacted me about Talaheim Lodge, was the surrounding area. Located in the foothills of the Tordrillo Mountains, the clear salmon streams and rivers collide with the giant peaks and glaciers that Alaska is famous for. The flightseeing alone is worth the price of admission - utterly jaw dropping. This is not a 1-dimensional fishery. There are many things to see and do that the lodge takes advantage of. I have to rank Talaheim among the top most scenic lodge locations I have visited in Alaska.
Here's a great demonstration of the "Reach Cast" - an aerial mend that is subtle and quite useful. For me, I used this technique before I ever knew it had a name. This is a very useful mend for many types of fishing situations.
This is a good exercise in reflection and self examination. I think all anglers should write or at least contemplate their own personal fly fishing poetry, as it allows us to put the sport in perspective. A very nice example here.
From the filmmaker:
A fragment of Mel Krieger's "Patagonia - 40 years fly fishing in ARGENTINA - this is for us the most emotional and beautiful few thoughts about fly fishing describing the very essence of being a fly fisherman... Rest in peace Mel...
The team at Fly Out has been so lucky to work with the Claus' family at Ultima Thule Lodge to tell their incredible story of wilderness, adventure, family, and the genuine Alaska experience. Today we are launching the teaser of a new web series - Beyond. The video series will explore the specialities and uniqueness of Ultima Thule Lodge, the flying culture, and the truly vast wilderness it's located in. It won't take you long to realize this is a truly special place that stands out as one of the world's great adventure lodges.
This video showcases Iliamna Lake and briefly shows some of the 2013 research of the Alaska Salmon Program's Iliamna Lake research station, one of four main facilities in Southwest Alaska . The program was established by the University of Washington in the 1940's and the majority of it's research is focused on ecology and fisheries management relating primarily to salmon and the environment in Bristol Bay, Alaska. Check out our program at: fish.washington.edu/research/alaska/
I am very grateful to be a part of such a long standing, and prominent program that allows me to work in the field in such an incredible setting with fantastic folks. This video was often shot between, or during field sampling events so thanks to all those who supported me by continuing to work while I fiddled with camera gear.
Filmed and edited by Jason Ching Additional footage provided by Cyril Michel
Trust me - it would be much easier to make floatants, line cleaners, fishing tools, and other niche fly fishing products without thinking of the environment. Loon Outdoors does it the hard way, by making a enviro-friendly product that also is effective in the field. Loon Outdoors is a fantastic brand, with an ethos that is truly admirable among fly fishing companies.
In Alaska, the fresh water that feeds the rivers is snowmelt from North America's highest mountains and most active volcanoes. Time and again, they erupt and poison the rivers. Scientists have only just begun to piece together what might have happened nearly 2,000 years ago, when one race of salmon faced the death of their natal river and were forced back to the open ocean.