George Cook is back on the podcast today and takes a deep dive into swinging flies for kings. We get a rundown on some of the history around the Kanektok and Nushagak Rivers. We find out when you should be planning your trip if you want to target rainbows and chinooks in Alaska. George tells us his gear setup to up your Spey game and we also talk a little bit about his passion for hunting. George also talks about what he calls, “Pillow Water” and how to do a cadence cast.

Fishing for King Salmon in Alaska with George Cook. Hit play below!

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(Read the Full Transcript at the bottom of this Blog Post)


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Show Notes with George Cook

05:45 – Geoge does some hunting. We’ve done a hunting episode before with Jay Scott in episode 354.

07:30 – George will be at the Pacific Northwest Sportsmen’s Show on February 15-19, 2023. They will have a hunting boot booth there.

14:30 – They hooked 105 fish in 8 days on the Nushagak River last year. But none of those fish were over 18 pounds.

19:30 – George talks about doing a DIY float trip on the Kanektok River, swinging for chinooks, kings, and rainbows.

Fishing for King Salmon in Alaska

35:20 – June 15 to July 8 would be the period to mouse for rainbows and chinook. George recommends doing a guided trip if you want to target chinooks.

38:10 – Dave Duncan Sr and his sons have over 30 years of experience guiding in the Kanektok River. George also noted Alaska West who’s been at it for a long time.

44:00 – George went full Spey since 2010. He rarely uses the single-handers nowadays.


Fishing for King Salmon in Alaska

44:45 – We mentioned Jim Teeny. He was one of my first guests on the podcast at WFS 05.

52:10 – They have a saying for flies “if it ain’t chartreuse, it ain’t no use”. George explains.

1:00:25 – George explains what he calls a Pillow Water.

1:04:20 – George tells us one of the greatest stories he’s ever heard.

1:16:20 – George describes how to do a cadence cast.

You can find George on Instagram @stateofspey


Related Podcast Episodes

NW Spey Fishing History with George Cook – Steelhead, Chinook Salmon (WFS 131)

WFS 179 – George Cook on Lake Fishing with a Fly – Isaak’s Ranch Fly Fishing

Read the Full Podcast Transcript Below