The Pacific side of West Chichagof and Yakobi Islands offers some of the most scenic coastline in the world--a mosaic of misty islets and passages, protected bays and secluded estuaries, and river systems which may not see a sport fisher all year. The remoteness of these myriad islands makes them refuges for wildlife and fish--and for anglers eager and able to move off the beaten path. Our pioneering trips in 1996 and 1997 encountered not a single other party.
There's reason for that solitude: standard travel--even in Alaskan terms--will not serve here. The fisheries are distant enough from Juneau to make fly-outs prohibitively expensive; and smaller craft can neither carry the fuel, nor make the outer water navigation required.
That's where the Steller comes in. Built for long-range Alaska Fish and Game research, 70 feet long, the Steller is a singular piece of work, sailed by Captain Dan Foley--who has better than 20 years experience in these waters--and crewed by experts. In simplest terms, the Steller holds enough fuel to reach Japan; the 35-foot boom can launch fully equipped zodiacs in roughly 90 seconds--less time than it takes for some guests to gear up and move from warm cabin or galley table; you can slip out of a hot shower into freshly laundered clothes; and the view from the pilot house is as good as coast watching ever gets. You can choose: relax and watch whales herding herring beneath the glacial waters of Icy Strait, ride in comfort while eating like royalty; or fish yourself into blissful exhaustion on a half-dozen isolated rivers a day, catching salmon and char until you ache--
--then......relax, count bald eagles and bears, eat like royalty.....