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Alder Pond, Portage

The elusive road to Alder Pond

Alder Pond from the western end of the lake

The first cast of the 2005 fishing season!

It sure felt good to hold the old pole again, even if we didn't catch anything

Alder Pond is located a little more than a mile down Portage Valley Road. The turn is easy to miss, so keep a sharp lookout on the right for a small sign that says "Alder Pond." There is a small parking lot at the end of the dirt road. There are a couple of very nice docks that can be easily fished from, one near the parking lot, and one halfway down the south side of the lake. Explorer Glacier looms impressively over the woods on the southern side of the lake, making it a very picturesque place.

The fish seem to prefer the northern shore of the lake, near the alders which cover the banks. It is stocked annualy with rainbow trout. The fish there seem fairly cautious, and sometimes are finnicky about biting. I've had good luck at this lake with both flies and bait. However, since it is often fairly windy in Portage Valley, flies are sometimes worthless.

I've caught fish of a range of sizes in this lake, but the average size seems to be around 10". I've seen some absolutely monstrous fish swimming back and forth along the north bank, but haven't managed to hook one of those big fellows yet.

One tactic I've very successfully employed is to row a small raft up to just past the eastern dock, then let the breeze carry me westward. The entire time I would slowly jig with some weighted bait, catching a good number of fish even in a single pass. There are many shallow areas in this lake, so in order to troll in this way, one must constantly keep tabs on the depth, trying to keep the bait off of the bottom.

Alder Pond is a very heavily vegetated lake, both under the water and along the banks, so it is easy to snag your hook on reeds and such if you aren't using flies. Because of the alders, fishing from shore can be challenging, and bears could easily be lurking nearby. However, this pond has the advantage of being fairly popular among fisherman and motorists.

Alaska Department of Fish & Game Lake Map