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Naknek River - Alaska

Katmai Trophy Lodge & Naknek River Camp, Alaska


Alaska Sampler

July 16th - 23rd, 2022

Hosted by Josh McQueen

Book Now-Contact Us

Silvers and Bows

August 6th - 13th, 2022

Hosted by Ryan Ratliff

Book now-Contact Us

Alaska Fishing Experience

The Katmai Trophy Lodge is located on the Naknek River just below what is know as the rapids. It is right in the middle between Naknek Lake and the lower stretches of the river giving us a short boat ride to wherever we want to fish on the Naknek and it's tributaries.

It is a gorgeous lodge that features a dining area and a lounge with couches which is a perfect area for our groups to gather in the evenings and share stories. The rooms are very nice and include 5 bedrooms in the main lodge and 2 guest cabins . Rooms are either setup with a queen bed and bunk bed combo, (which are perfect for families or small groups), or are setup with a queen bed and a twin bed. All rooms have their own bathroom with shower, mini fridge, and heater.

Fish Alaska Magazine identified the Naknek as Alaska's #1 destination for trophy rainbows! That is a big statement, but we think you will agree that the river can live up to the claim. The average fish will still be in the 2-5 pound range, but there will be a realistic possibility of bigger bows - up to 36 inches long - almost every day. If rainbows are your target fish, the best time is early and late season. The Naknek is a big river that holds big fish- quite often in fast water. It is a great river for a switch or spey rod. The best rainbow fishing is close to camp. The rainbows concentrate on salmon smolt and leeches migrating downstream to the ocean.

Mad River Outfitters' "Alaska Sampler" trip allows you to experience the widest variety of Alaskan fly fishing opportunities. There is the potential to catch all 5 species of Alaska salmon during the week. Kings, sockeye, chums, and pinks will all be abundant and a few early silvers will be poking in. Sockeye will be in prime condition for anyone wanting to take fish home. Giant rainbows will be chasing sockeye smolts in the Naknek River. Side trips to smaller streams will provide mousing and skating, as well as regular dry fly action for rainbows, char, and grayling. Pike will be available in sloughs off the main river. Bears will be found on all waters in the area. If you want to see everything Alaska offers the fly angler, this is the trip for you.

"Naktoberfest" celebrates the end of the Alaska fly fishing season and the opportunity to tangle with the largest rainbow trout of the year on the Naknek River. In a river famous for its trophy trout, this is time when “in the know” anglers show up. Each Fall the Naknek produces rainbows pushing 20 pounds. These “coastal rainbows” travel the Naknek River corridor between Naknek Lake and Bristol Bay feeding heavily all season. By the end of the year they are at peak size and in prime condition. If you love to fish streamers and swing flies on both single-hand and two-hand rods for giant trout, you need to experience Naktoberfest!

We're proud to announce the creation of our new "Silvers and Bows" trip for August 2020.

Our new "Silvers and Bows" week focuses on chasing Naknek River silver (coho) salmon and trophy rainbows. King season is closed, but hard-fighting silvers will be abundant and smashing a variety of colorful streamers. Rainbows will still be chasing smolts, but beginning to transition to feasting on eggs as Kings and sockeyes begin to spawn. Bead fishing on both the main river and side trips will be full swing and produce big numbers of rainbows, grayling, and colorful char. Stripping streamers will consistently produce silvers. Pike fishing continues in main river sloughs. Lots of bears around on all waters.

Katmai Trophy Lodge

The classic Katmai Trophy Lodge is a riverfront log lodge featuring 2 stories of glass looking out on the beautiful Naknek River. Dinner is prepared by one of their two professional chefs featuring Alaska favorites like salmon, halibut, king crab, Alaskan clams and reindeer.

Evenings can be spent tying flies and swapping fish stories in their comfortable great room or in your private room or cabin. Their rooms feature amenities like full time electricity, a mini-fridge, individually controlled heat, log furniture and a private bathroom with shower.

Katmai Trophy Lodge has created an Alaskan fishing adventure that starts with the perfect blend of luxury and affordability and combines it with some of the best salmon and trout fishing that the world has to offer.

Book Your Alaska Sampler Trip

July 16th - 23rd, 2022

Book Now

Book Your Naktoberfest Trip

Stay tuned for dates!

Coming Soon!

Book Your Silver and Bows Trip

August 6th - 13th, 2022

Book Now

Mad River Outfitters Alaska Trips: We have secured a special rate based on the volume of clients that we provide to these lodges. Amazing offer here for an amazing week of fishing. Thanks to our customers for the repeat business and to the Johnson family for making this possible for Mad River Outfitters and clients.

You fly into Anchorage, Alaska (ANC) then switch over to either Penair or Alaska Airlines for the final leg to King Salmon (AKN). We will look for you to arrive sometime after noon on the 1st Saturday of the trip. You will then fly the following Saturday back to Anchorage via King Salmon. You will be met by your host from Mad River Outfitters either in Anchorage or in King Salmon and we'll take over from there! Full travel info will be provided upon sign-up but trust us it's easy.

Included in the trips:

• 6 days guided fishing from jet sleds and walk-wade.
• 7 nights lodging in the Katmai Trophy Lodge and Cabins.
• All meals prepared by lodge and lunch on rivers
• Transportation via boat/vehicle from King Salmon to the lodge and back.
• US Coast Guard and ADF&G licensed guides
• All necessary flies and lures
• All terminal fishing gear, rods and reels
• Cleaning and Vacuum packing of salmon for flying home
• Linens, comforter, private bathroom with hot/cold water.
• Daily maid service
• Waders and wading boots are available but are limited in size.

Additional Information:

• You do not need to bring towels or bedding/sleeping bag.
• There are flies and lures for sale at the lodge if needed.
• Most of the rivers fished are single hook only.
• They do have a vacuum packer and can box up salmon to take home.
• There is full time power and an outlet in your cabin.
• Telephone and internet access readily available.

What's Not Included:

• Flights to and from King Salmon
• Fishing on Saturday
• Adult Beverages
• Taxes ($161 USD)
• Fishing License and King Stamp
• Tips for staff and guides
• Fish Box or Cooler (insulated fish boxes can be purchased at the lodge for $20)

Questions? Please, contact us we're more than happy to help!

Can't make our Hosted Trip dates? Mad River Outfitters serves as a full booking agent and outfitter for Katmai Trophy Lodge and Naknek River Camp. Let us put together a trip for you!

The vast Naknek River will transform your passion for fly fishing.

Fish Alaska Magazine identified the Naknek as Alaska's top destination for trophy rainbows! That is a big statement, but we think you will agree that the river can live up to the claim. The average fish will still be in the 2-5 pound range, but there will be a realistic possibility of bigger bows, up to 36 inches long; almost every day. If rainbows are your target fish, the best time is early and late season.

The Naknek is a big river that holds big fish- quite often in fast water. It is a great river for a switch or spey rod. The best rainbow fishing is close to camp. The rainbows concentrate on salmon smolt and leeches migrating downstream to the ocean.

Additional Fishing Opportunities:

• Rainbows on Brooks
• Grayling at Idavain
• Char in Margo Creek
• Multiple options for fly-outs

The Fish

Arctic Char and Grayling - These are year 'round residents and make great fly rod targets. Grayling are especially eager to rise to a dry fly in early season, making them an ideal quarry for a 4 or 5 wt. fly rod and a floating line. The arctic char look a lot like brook trout, only larger. The best techniques for them are the same as for rainbows, so basically, anytime you are fishing for rainbows, you are also fishing for char whether you realize it or not. They spend a lot of time tucked in behind the spawning salmon, feasting on eggs, making egg flies their number one weakness.

King Salmon - There is a reason why these babies are called the Kings - nothing in Alaska grows to the massive sizes of a chinook salmon. They begin running in mid-June, continue through much of July and spawn in August. Their eggs are also huge, (8 - 10mm) making king salmon eggs one of the very favorite treats for a trophy rainbow in August. Most people in Alaska fish kings with heavy spin or baitcasting gear, using deep diving plugs, spin-n-glows, or large spoons and spinners. They can be taken on fly gear, but the battles are epic and the angler loses the struggle much more often than he wins.

Sockeye Salmon (Red Salmon) - These are the best eating and most prolific salmon in the system, numbering upwards of 4 million per year. Everyone seemingly knows how delicious they are, but few realize that they are also tremendous fighters, especially on a 7 or 8 wt. fly rod. From late June through mid-August, they can provide almost constant action. Their huge numbers are the reason why this area has such an abundant population of rainbows and bears.

Chum and Pink Salmon - Chum are called dog salmon, because they are a favored food for the sled dog teams, but you will call them something else entirely as they nearly tear the rod from your hand and bust up your tackle. Some pink salmon will run every year, but the run is much stronger in even years. Both will be most effectively fished with streamers and both will run in July and early August.

Silver Salmon - Last, but certainly not least, is the silver salmon. These incredible game fish are easily a favorite salmon, getting large enough to put on a show and delicious on the table. They are also the most aggressive of the salmon, chasing streamers and even taking skating dry flies on occasion. They begin moving into the rivers in early August and the run continues on into mid-September. We usually use a fly rod in the 7-9 wt. range or a spinning rod loaded with 8-12lb mono.

The Wildlife

Though nothing is guaranteed, your week in Alaska will most likely feature some of the 'photo ops" that you would expect! Along with witnessing an incredible range of Alaskan wildlife, your week will typically include a tleast one visit to Brooks falls. Tours and hikes to the falls can be arranged and is HIGHLY recommended. We also fish at Brooks for rainbow and sockeye and this typically proves to be some of the most "exciting" fishing of the trip.

Mad River Outfitters

Naknek River Camp

Alaska Sampler

Alaska Sampler

hosted by Josh McQueen


July 16th - 23rd, 2022


$4295.00 per Angler

Includes all meals, lodging and six days of guided fishing.


Book Now

Mad River Outfitters

Katmai Trophy Lodge

Silver and Bows

Silver and Bows

hosted by Ryan Ratliff


August 6th - 13th, 2022


$4,495.00 per Angler

Includes all meals, lodging and six days of guided fishing.


Book Now

Additional Information

This is a greatly reduced rate for the Katmai Trophy Lodge. We have secured our trips for the 2019 season at the same price as the sister lodge, Naknek River Camp.


Contact Us

MRO Alaska Trip Hosts 2022

Jim Johnson- owner of the Naknek River Camp



Jim Johnson owner and operator of the Naknek River Camp

Jim and his family are on staff and on-site to ensure that you have a safe, comfortable and enjoyable week in Alaska. We first met Jim Johnson in 1990 when running our original Salmon Trips to the Pere Marquette in Michigan. We are thrilled to be working with the Johnson's again.


Josh McQueen

MRO Guide Staff- Erie Steelhead and Ohio Pike

Josh is a star guide for us here in Ohio. He guides for Lake Erie Steelhead, Ohio pike and smallmouth and more! He's an excellent guy and and even better fly fishing instructor. You will enjoy his company! Josh will be there to be sure that you have the trip that we promised you and then some!

Josh will be hosting our "Alaska Sampler" Trip in 2022.

Jerry Darkes

MRO Guide Staff, Sales Rep, Author, Instructor


MRO has been working with Jerry Darkes for well over 20 years now. Jerry has been a sales rep for us for many, many years as well as a known author, lecturer and guide. He is one of the most recognized names in the Midwest Fly Fishing arena. Jerry has become addicted to these Alaska trips and we are thrilled to again have him hosting for MRO!

Join Jerry at the Katmai Trophy Lodge -TBA


Jeff Liskay

MRO Guide Staff, Patagonia Ambassador, Instructor


Jeff has become one of the most recognized steelhead guides in the Great Lakes Region in recent years. He is also touted as one of the best "Switch and Spey" Instructors in the industry. MRO has been working with Jeff for a long time now and we are thrilled to have him as the host of this very special trip in September.

Join Jeff in Alaska on the Naknek River - TBA


Ryan Ratliff

MRO Guide Staff, Fly Tying Manager, Instructor


Ryan is an integral part of the workings of Mad River Outfitters, both in the shop and out. He serves as our Fly Tying Manager and also does quite a bit of guiding and instructing for the shop. He is a pleasure to work with and you will thoroughly enjoy his companionship on this trip. A true professional!

Ryan will be hosting our "Silver and Bows" trip of 2022.