Owner and head pilot Jerry Jacques operates one of the most unique fly out lodges in the Iliamna area, combining small occupancy and multiple aircraft to give guests a wide range of angling options.
Jerry Jacques – owner, operator, and head pilot of the lodge – has been flying in Alaska for decades, and knows Bristol Bay like few others. He has a long and successful history in the area in both the fly fishing and hunting scene, first flying and guiding for other outfitters, and then for himself at his beautiful lodge on the shore of Lake Iliamna. His facility is a classic wood lodge, with each two guests sharing a beautiful, wood-paneled cabin complete with full shower and bathroom. The lodge chef prepares delectable breakfasts and dinners in the lodge each day, while lunches are taken in the field. The great room is large and comfortable, with an array of couches and chairs gathered around a large stone fireplace.
The lodge could not be more perfectly and centrally located to hit all of the finest local trophy trout fisheries, rivers like the Moraine, Funnel, Gibraltar, Talarik and others. In addition to his two float planes, Jerry also owns two more planes on wheels, allowing him to access an array of coastal salmon rivers, as well as untouched reaches of other trophy trout and char rivers. He can fly where few others can reach, making for a new adventure every day! Whether you are after trophy rainbows, gorgeously-marked Arctic Char, dry-fly-sipping grayling, or silver or chum salmon (while they’re still close to the ocean and dime-bright), Bristol Bay Sportfishing can show you a remarkable experience.
Reservations & Rates
The six night/six day (6n/6d) rate for the 2019 season is $7,180; five night/five day (5n/5d) rate is $5,980; four night/four day (4n/4d) rate is $5,320; and the three night/three day (3n/3d) rate is $3,990. Turnaround days are variable, and other length stays can often be arranged, upon request.
Included in your angling package at the Bristol Bay Sportfishing Lodge is all lodging, meals, and fly out fishing with two clients to each guide, as well as fishing gear and waders, if desired.
Not included in your angling package at Bristol Bay Sportfishing Lodge are the flight transfer from Anchorage to Iliamna, fishing license, gratuities and alcohol.
The Fly Shop® is not in the insurance business, but we recommend Travel Guard coverage as a service with a desire to see your best interests protected. It is impossible to know when an unfortunate situation (loss of luggage, fly rods, illness in the family, or an accident) may occur. However, such things can and do happen, and this insurance can provide a means of recourse against non-refundable financial losses.
• Travel Guard Insurance
Seasons at Bristol Bay Sportfishing
In the vast majority of the streams Bristol Bay Sportfishing Lodge fishes, there are two distinctly different types of rainbows: resident (those that live full time in the rivers), and lake-run (trout that live most of their lives in lakes, moving into the streams to feed at specific times).
In the early season – June through the first of July – lake-run trout will often migrate into rivers to feast on the downstream migration of the
previous year's salmon smolt. During this time, white-colored streamers resembling little smolt are deadly, as are more traditional black Egg-Sucking Leeches (many streams see spawning migrations of lamprey eels, which some believe contributes to the effectiveness of large black leech patterns). As well, resident fish are hungry after a long, cold winter, and in some streams will react aggressively to a surface-skated mouse pattern. Jerry is able to access some beautiful smaller streams in June that have wonderful rainbow trout action, often sight-fishing with streamer patterns. As well, the lodge also has some excellent king salmon fishing in late June, albeit primarily with conventional gear. Bristol Bay Sportfishing closes down to anglers for the month of July, opening again in August and September.
In early July the Iliamna streams flood with a massive infusion of sockeye salmon, an escapement literally numbering in the millions. While at first these fish are more of a hindrance than a help to the trout fishing, by the time August rolls around they become a trout bonanza, providing an egg and flesh smorgasbord seemingly without limit. The key is knowing where to be, and when. The lodge fishes many well-known regional trophy trout streams – Talarik, Moraine, Battle, Iliamna, Gibraltar - as well as having some "secret" small stream options available only vis wheelplane. This is definitely the "time of plenty" with every available trout crowded in behind spawning salmon, often visible in the shallows as they gorge. Single egg patterns and beads are the most productive patterns, though smallish flesh patterns can also be very effective. Late August is also prime-time to target the nearby coastal rivers for chrome-bright silver and chum salmon, landing on coastal beaches adjacent to the streams on wheel planes, and walking upstream to find pods of fish. These fisheries are normally only fished by the lodge, making for a wonderfully solitary angling experience combining the best of fresh and salt water environments. There's nothing quite like battling salmon in a river, with the sounds and smells of the nearby ocean surf filling your senses!
As August turn to September, the sockeyes fade dramatically, spawned out and dying, and the days get cool and short. This is the time for the serious trophy trout hunter. While the resident trout are at their fattest – many in the 2-5 pound category - there is a final upward push of lake fish into many of the streams. While there normally won't be as many hookups as in August, an angler's chance at hooking those elusive 6-10 pound fish becomes significantly better in September. Bristol Bay Sportfishing's experienced guides have a high rate of success during this time of year, based both on the experience of years on the streams, and an intuitive sense of where these monsters are likely to be. Normally this time of year the angler will begin to fish less beads, and more large flesh streamers. As well, articulated leech and sculpin patterns can be deadly - it is the "big fly, big fish" time of year!
Getting to Bristol Bay Sportfishing
Because Bristol Bay Sportfishing welcomes shorter than full week packages, they don't have set turnaround dates…they are happy to offer arrival and departure dates to clients based on space availability. Guests need to book flights between Anchorage and the village of Iliamna with Iliamna Air Taxi - the lodge will pick them up at the IAT building on arrival to the village, and deliver them back there on their day of departure. On the day prior to your arrival to the lodge, you should plan on traveling to
Anchorage and overnighting at one of the many fine hotels there (unlessyou'll be arriving to the lodge in the late afternoon, in which case you may be able to avoid the Anchorage overnight stay). The flight time between Anchorage and Iliamna is about an hour in one of the IAT Pilatus aircraft, a high-flying, comfortable ride.
Lodging at Bristol Bay Sportfishing
The main lodge is a classic wood structure situated right on the banks of Lake Iliamna. Huge windows surround the dining room, allowing views out over the lake and surrounding landscapes. There is a game room with a full-size pool table, a great room with comfortable sofas and chairs and fireplace, and a large wooden exterior deck overlooking the lake. Guest cabins are roomy and well-appointed, set up for double occupancy (though there is sometimes an opportunity for single occupancy rooms
for those desiring it). Each cabin has a full shower and bathroom, large beds with peeled-bark frames, and plenty of closet and storage space for organizing clothes and fishing gear. Each evening, following a long day of fishing on nearby streams, you'll return to a hot shower and sumptuous hors d' oeuvres. After a chance to swap lies and share photos on digital cameras, a tasty dinner will be served, after which you are free to hang out in the great room, or retire to your individual cabins.
Fishing at Bristol Bay Sportfishing
After a hearty breakfast, you'll put on your waders on the porch of your cabin, grab your tackle, and take the short walk down to the dock behind the lodge, where the floatplanes will be awaiting you. Or, if you're scheduled to fish one of the many streams accessible only by wheel plane, you'll take the short drive to the airport where those are kept. Having four planes - two floatplanes and two wheel planes – means there are a lot of potential fishing options at any given
time. And, in the unlikely event weather keeps you from flying out, the BBSF guides have jet boats ready and waiting on nearby Newhalen River, where trout, Dolly Varden, grayling, and salmon are waiting to be hooked. The lodge also has boats stationed on other rivers, to be used as though fisheries "get hot".
Lunches are normally taken in the field, prepared by the cook staff and carried by your guide, along with a drink of your choice.
There are streams to fit almost any angler's tastes, from tiny creeks to large rivers. The lodge provides all necessary flies to all clients, so while you may choose to bring your own flies to fish, you don't have to. As well, for those preferring to travel light, on request the lodge is happy to provide all of the client's gear, both waders and wading shoes and rods and reels, all at no additional charge.
At the end of each day, the floatplanes will pick up their guests at a pre-determined time and place, and take the short flight back to the lodge.
What Makes This Destination Special and Unique?
• A classic fly out, fly fishing lodge, on the banks of Iliamna Lake. Guests enjoy quick and easy access to an extraordinary amount of angling choices each day in and around Bristol Bay for some of the best trophy rainbow trout and salmon fisheries in the region. Less time in the air getting to and from your chosen fishery, means more time on the water and more hook-ups!
• The lodge only accommodates 8 guests a week, meaning they have tremendous flexibility in their fishing program. Lodge owner Jerry Jacques keeps boats on a few remote streams, to better access the water he has at his disposal. Anglers are accommodated in very comfortable guest cabins, and take delectable meals in the main lodge building (which also has a pool table and a room for watching movies). This is a great spot for small groups of anglers or families that are looking an incredibly flexible diverse fishery, excellent accommodations, and great food. Take the whole lodge for yourselves and leave the details to Jerry and his seasoned staff.
• In addition to his float planes, Jerry also has a pair of wheel planes. These are an amazing addition, as they allow him to land on small dirt and gravel strips adjacent to streams not accessible in any other way. This allows not only unique trout fishing options, but also the ability to fly to the coast and land on beaches near the mouths of wilderness silver and chum salmon streams. When you eliminate the completion from other anglers and outfitters, the fishery is that much better!
• Bristol Bay Sportfishing Lodge offers shorter than full week stays, for those who want to add a few days here to a stay at a different lodge, or a business trip to Anchorage. Not all of us have a full week to dedicate to a fishing trip and it makes this lodge a real possibility for those looking for a quick getaway, with simple and easy access.
• As a daily sidelight to the fishing, guests are treated to some of the best bear-viewing in the world. As the Iliamna/Katmai streams annually flood with millions of sockeye salmon, the bears migrate from miles around to take advantage of the ensuing feast. It can be very much like stepping into the pages of a National Geographic magazine, catching big rainbows behind masses of neon-red and green spawning salmon, with huge brown bears splashing all around.