Rapids Camp Lodge

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King Salmon, Alaska

    Rapids Camp Lodge Overview

    Founded in 1996, Rapids Camp Lodge quickly earned the reputation of being the premier Western Alaska fly-out operation. It is ideally located in the heart of Alaska’s best trout and salmon fisheries on the world famous Naknek River just outside of King Salmon, AK.

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    Largest Fleet of Aircraft in Alaska

    In addition to their premium jet-boats, Rapids Camp Lodge operates four float planes! Included are three DeHavilland Beavers on floats. The jewel of the fleet is the one of a kind turbine powered DeHavilland Otter. Their program is founded on an endless array of angling options for a dozen species with the usage of the largest fleet of aircraft in the business. With four planes and a maximum of twenty guests per week, the aircraft/angler ratio is lower than all competing lodges in the State.   RCL also provides roundtrip air transport between King Salmon and Anchorage on two private wheeled planes as well! 

    Species Diversity & TROPHY Rainbows

    The angling options are endless – In addition to all five species of salmon, arctic char, grayling, pike, and an organized saltwater program for halibut (among other species including yellow-eye & ling cod), Rapids Camp Lodge is perhaps best known for its trophy rainbow trout opportunities. Nearly all our clients depart having caught the largest trout of their lives. BIG rainbows are the specialty at Rapids Camp Lodge.

    Non-Anglers Welcome

    While the fishing program speaks for itself, non-anglers are encouraged to enjoy Rapids Camp’s eco-tourism program. Wildlife encounters with such species as brown bear, caribou, moose, foxes, and wolves are a daily occurrence. Guests can detour from the fishing to visit a walrus colony, an Eskimo village, a Salmon cannery, Kodiak Island, the glaciers and marine life (humpback whales, orcas, seas lions) of Geographic Harbor, go on a hike, etc. There is really no better way to witness everything Alaska than with the flexibility of your own floatplane and experienced guides.

    Plush Accommodations & All Gear Provided

    The lodge can provide all the fishing gear, waders, flies, and tackle required for both fly fishers and conventional spinning gear anglers. RCL employs eight full time guides, four pilots, and a fine, service oriented staff. The food at Rapids Camp Lodge is hands down the best we have ever tasted at any lodge worldwide! Comfortable accommodations in eight double occupancy bedrooms with private baths allow a maximum of sixteen guests in the main lodge facilities. Rapids Camp has also introduced the owner’s old two-bedroom cabin home to the mix to offer additional accommodation for contiguous groups of up to twenty guests.

    The ten acre riverfront property boasts a cozy great room with high-speed wireless internet, satellite TV, and a beer and wine bar. The lodge also has a comfortable reading room, workout facilities, and massage service. Rapids Camp Lodge operates on a weeklong (Friday – Friday) schedule, however shorter half week trips are available during a handful of weeks throughout the season.

    Rapids Camp Lodge Description

    King Salmon, Alaska is located three hundred miles southwest of Anchorage on the northwestern side of Katmai National Park, in what is known as the Bristol Bay area of Southwest Alaska. The majority of the rivers and streams in the area are found in the Bristol Bay watershed, which is world renowned for its runs of wild Pacific Salmon and thriving resident populations of rainbow trout, arctic char, arctic grayling, northern pike, lake trout and dolly varden.

    Rapids Camp Lodge is our most popular fly-out fly-fishing lodge located upriver from King Salmon on the bank of the Naknek River, a world famous trophy rainbow trout destination fishery. Guests fish the Naknek and, with the use of the lodge's four aircraft (largest fleet in the business), hundreds of miles of rivers and creeks within close proximity to the lodge within nearby national and state parks and federal wildlife refuges which have little or no human development. Western Alaska is the last American frontier in the world of fly-fishing, and there is perhaps no better venue to experience the wonders of this amazing wilderness than Rapids Camp Lodge.

    Owner and Dallas native, Jerry Shults, purchased the property home to Rapids Camp Lodge from the U.S. Air Force in 1996. After building the lodge on the grounds of the old officer's retreat, RCL has become one of the most complete and reputable fly-out operations in Western Alaska. Its family atmosphere, superior food and service, first rate equipment and airplanes, and a world-class roster of tenured guides and pilots combine to create the greatest Alaskan experience available.

    The Fishing

    Guests at Rapids Camp fly out daily aboard one of lodge’s four aircraft to numerous remote streams and rivers in the area. RCL operates the largest fleet well maintained planes in the Alaska! With three DeHavilland Beavers on floats, a DeHavilland turbine driven Otter on floats and the option to convert one of the Beavers from floats to tundra tires, Rapids Camp guests are best equipped for accessing the areas remote fisheries and wildlife viewing areas. In the event of weather precluding flying, the incredible rainbow trout and salmon fishing of the Naknek River is right out the back door. In fact, numerous guests throughout the season will forgo a fly-out day for longer fishing hours and the convenience of the Naknek. The Naknek is home to some of Alaska’s largest Rainbows --- many exceeding 30 inches, and tremendous runs of all species of salmon.

    Rapids Camp guides are all well versed in the program and many have over a decade of experience fishing, guiding, and exploring Alaska. Nearly all the guides grew up fishing the famous salmon and steel head rivers of the Pacific Northwest – and are well kept professionals with excellent manners and instructional ability. Whether you have your children in tow or are looking to learn to cast a spey rod, Rapids Camp guides can handle guests of all skill levels, ages, genders, and levels of physical fitness.

    Rivers & Lakes

    Dependent upon the specific rivers to be fished, on any given day guests will most often walk and wade streams and other times access more remote fishing areas by jet-boat after delivery to the area by aircraft. Fish species available throughout the season include the Pacific Salmon species of king, chum, sockeye, pink and silver, as well as the resident fish species of rainbow trout, arctic char, dolly varden, arctic grayling, northern pike and lake trout. The lodge also maintains custom jet boats on the Naknek as well as numerous smaller jet sleds stashed on various rivers throughout the region including two boats on the Kvichak and three boats on the Nushagak. Float trips in comfortable rafts are also part of the weekly routine depending on the season and anglers’ interests. Southwestern Alaska offers an incredible diversity of fishing opportunities with eleven game fish species available throughout the season.

    Saltwater Program

    In addition to the traditional river based programs, guests may venture down and try their hand in the saltwater for halibut, salmon, ling cod, rockfish, yellow-eye, and many others. Their saltwater program takes place at beautiful Geographic Harbor and the waters around Kodiak Island, also a wonderful spot for viewing bears, humped back whales, orcas, seals, sea lions and tons of other marine and bird life. Anglers and guides typically take the turbine otter down to the coast where modern 26’ closed cabin Hewes Craft boats are moored. It is a gorgeous flight over Katmai to the saltwater bay, and well worth taking a day off from the river. This is a wonderful addition to the unique program, and is really something for everyone to consider. Rapids Camp only conducts the saltwater program when seas are calm, and this is a great side trip for families as well as those interested in witnessing a part of Alaska not frequented by other lodges. Geographic Harbor (or “Geo”) is one of the prettiest places on earth!

    The Rivers:

    Rapids Camp hits nearly fifty of Bristol Bay Alaska’s best river systems. The following is a brief description of the most popular spots --- but with four airplanes (3 on floats and 1 on tundra tires) flexibility, safety, and speed also allows for easy access on many lesser known rivers that can seasonally fish off the charts and don’t have much competition from other fly-out lodges.

    The Naknek
    The Naknek is the home river. It is big water for big fish! The lodge is situated on the Naknek approximately fifteen minutes from the King Salmon Airport just downstream of the rapids section of this massive drainage, and approximately ten miles downstream from the outlet at Naknek Lake. The river in front of the lodge is very large allowing for easy float plane access. It boasts of an enormous salmon run and some of the largest rainbows in Alaska. Upstream of the lodge a few clicks the river chokes down in width and becomes more wade friendly from shallow shelves and along the willow lined banks. 22-28 inch rainbows are par for the course on the Naknek, with numerous 10 pound + specimens coming to hand throughout the season.

    Early season smolt runs offer incredible rainbow opportunities as huge trout will move out of the lake busting bait balls. The middle parts of the season offer consistent bead/egg fishing for bows, and the salmon runs for all sub species are enormous in “The Nak”. Experienced anglers from all over the world will make a fall pilgrimage to the Naknek and Kvichak rivers during the later half of September in search of the largest rainbows on earth. Starting around September 20th, “The Swing” turns on when the largest lake run rainbows enter the river system. This event allows anglers the world’s best chance for catching multiple 30+ inch rainbows. It is “steelhead style” fishing most often fished effectively with two-handed spey rods while wading the gravelly shallow shelves and banks of this stunning freestone.

    The Kvichak
    Dumping our of Lake Illiamna (the largest lake in Alaska), the Kvichak is also one of the most famous rivers in the world for harboring huge rainbows. The Kvichak is also big water, and a must do river with any trip to Alaska. Rapids Camp keeps two jet boats on the “braids” section of the river, a renowned stretch of the river that lends itself to easier wading opportunities and the ability to sight cast to huge rainbows in the 25-32 inch range. The Kvichak also has a similar run of chromed up rainbows during the annual June smolt migration as well as a September swing for huge steelhead-like rainbows in the main stem.

    Ugashik Narrows
    Tributaries of both these lake systems hold huge Char; we regularly have guests catch 35-inch trophies --- oftentimes several fish over thirty inches a day per angler. Unlike many places where char of these proportions are found, RCL is within easy striking distance. Ugashik is accessed by float plane on one of the lakes and anglers easily wade the one mile connecting stream loaded with thousands of char feeding on salmon roe. It is like shooting ducks on the pond and a really fun distraction from the hard-core rainbow fishing.

    Brooks & Brooks Falls
    You know that iconic National Geographic image of the bear catching the salmon in the air? The Brooks River contains the world famous Brooks Falls, where bears enjoy a perennial feast of salmon as they ascend the falls. This is a tremendous opportunity to see one of nature’s great spectacles. Brooks offers bear-viewing platforms to assist visitors in viewing and avoiding the bears. These platforms give you an elevated view of the bears in total safety and are a must see for photographers.

    The Brooks River can also provide excellent rainbow and sockeye fishing for anglers, provided the bears allow you to fish. At peak bear times there can be so many bears as to make fishing difficult, but the river is loaded with zillions of 18-28 inch rainbows.

    Battle Creek
    Starting in late July, Rapids Camp will begin frequenting these two mainstay drainages. Although they can get a bit crowded at times, guides will conduct a float trip down the solitude rich upper stretches or stake out a proper beat of river on the lower sections bang away at the hundreds of glutinous rainbows slurping on spawning sockeye. The rainbows in Battle are constantly on the move with fresh fish moving up and down the numerous, windy, runs of the system. Right when you think you have fished out the hole, break for lunch and before you know it four more big targets visibly move into your spot.

    Moraine Creek
    The Moraine Creek flows 15 miles from Spectacle Lake to Kukaklek Lake. Funnel Creek is its major tributary. The Moraine has the reputation of having some of the biggest rainbow trout in and around the Katmai National Park and Preserve. This stream consistently produces the largest trout of the season outside of the Naknek and Kvichak, with some fish exceeding 30 inches. Views of surrounding glacial valleys, wildlife, and river scenery also help make the Moraine one of the most popular spots for Rapids Camp guests.

    American
    American fishes great all season and is another river loaded with feisty 18-26 inch rainbows and char up to 27-28 inches. It is a steep drainage and is also a great spot to consider if you are interested in some mouse fishing. Some of the most beautiful hikes and often the best dry fly fishing in the state.

    The Kulik
    Kulik is one of the most beautiful fly-out destinations within the Katmai region. Surrounded by mountains, the river is a little more than a mile long and drains Kulik Lake into Nonvianuk Lake. Kulik is a great fishery providing good numbers of aggressive trout ranging to 25 inches, with the average fish being 17-18 inches. During peak times Kulik can be a little crowded at times, but on most days, the river is generous with fish, elbow room, and wilderness scenery. Rapids Camp operates unique float trips down the Kulik. It is a high volume style of fishing with medium sized fish, but is a great place for those looking to rack up the easy numbers.

    The Nushagak
    The grand daddy of all Alaska King Salmon Rivers. RCL keeps three boats at the Nushagak river ready and waiting for anglers who want to have a hand at the largest of the salmon sub species. Getting there is simple, a spectacular quick jump in the Otter.

    Big Ku
    The Big Ku is a wide-open, larger river with beautiful views of the lake and surroundings. The Big Ku is a great early June trout fishery where trout lay in wait ready to attack clouds of salmon smolt as they make their migration to the ocean. Trout fishing remains good until hordes of adult sockeyes ascend the Lake in early July. Rainbow fishing is replaced by excellent sockeye fishing. Rapids Camp can also access certain spots that offer a unique opportunity for early season anglers to wade fish swinging flies for king salmon.

    Little Ku
    The Little Ku is a small tannic colored stream that empties into the west end of Kukaklek Lake. It is the smaller of the two rivers but the trout that return to it each year are not! The Little Ku has good numbers of big rainbows and can have a lot of bears. The Little Ku offers plenty of walking, however the appeal for those who endure the walk is the opportunity to catch big native trout without the crowds.

    The Smokey River
    Tucked down the Alaska Peninsula the “smokey” gets a generous run of Kings without the corresponding number of anglers. Small, clear and intimate is a rare find when it comes to the King of salmon. Perfect for the angler who wants to experience great fly fishing for kings but not have to get stuck without options to fish for other species. The perfect day trip to catch a king on a fly.

    Coastal Rivers
    Flying along the coast and seeing the fish before you land just up the beach is the ultimate in fly-out fly fishing. Rapids Camp Lodge visits all the most prolific coastal drainages of the Alaskan Peninsula. The wheeled beaver allows this access to some of Alaska’s most remote fisheries filled with freshest salmon possible as they enter the river system from the salt.

    All Fishing Equipment Provided:

    Other than a few necessities such as sunglasses and a rain jacket, Rapids Camp Lodge can provide all the necessary gear for their guests. The lodge maintains high quality rods, reels, waders, etc at no extra charge. All flies, leaders, tippet and other tackle are also included in the trip cost. You can show up at RCL with close to nothing and expect to be fully outfitted upon arrival.

    Accommodations

    Following a long day on the water, anglers are able to relax and enjoy exceptional accommodation and amenities at Rapids Camp Lodge. The facility’s traditional log cabin style buildings are tastefully decorated and tailor made for a luxurious Alaskan wilderness experience. The lodge sits on a bluff perched above the Naknek. The float planes and pier is a one minute walk right out your back door!

    The lodge houses their guests in eight spacious double occupancy bedrooms with private baths. The ten acre property sits directly on the banks of the Naknek River. Meals are taken in the lodge’s main building adjacent to the comfortable great room equipped with satellite TV, open bar, and high speed wireless internet.

    Compared to other wilderness fishing lodges, RCL has a huge advantage in being connected to town by a road. This accessibility to daily flights from Anchorage allows their world-class chefs to pamper guests with meals of the freshest ingredients. They serve only the finest meats and wild game (duck, Kobe beef, venison, etc.), have access to the freshest salmon and halibut on earth, and have fresh produce delivered weekly. The lodge employs two full time professional chefs that turn out phenomenal meals from fresh seafood to prime rib. Honestly, the meals at Rapids Camp Lodge are perhaps the best we have enjoyed at any fishing lodge…anywhere. Desserts are delicious, the bar is always well stocked, and the wine selection is always top notch. Guests help themselves to local draft beer from the bar and the lodge has several excellent California, Chilean, and other imported wines as part of every meal and cocktail hour. While out for the day you will be fed a hot shore lunch of Salmon (weather and bears permitting). If you are rafting or hiking the chefs will send along a delicious picnic lunch. If you are fishing on the NakNek expect a nice hot lunch at the lodge.

    Other amenities include a private reading room and a workout facility. There is a full time professional masseuse on staff at the lodge for evening relaxation after a long day on the river. Rapids Camp Lodge is as nice as any fly out fishing lodge in Alaska, and we encourage our customers to understand this is not a “roughing it” kind of experience. The most high maintenance women will be comfortable in the lodge’s facilities.

    The Owner’s Cabin

    Cohesive parties of four may request staying in the lodge’s “owner’s cabin” on the property if available. This two bedroom cabin grants guests a little more privacy and square footage as well satellite TV and a small kitchen.

    Capacity:

    The lodge capacity is traditionally 16 anglers per week. However, cohesive parties of four may have access to the lodge's "owners cabin" just up the hill from the main lodge building. See "Accommodations" section for further description. If guests are staying in the owners cabin, the lodge will operate with 20 anglers per week.

    Travel

    Rapids Camp Lodge operates on a Friday - Friday schedule.

    The first leg of the trip is accomplished by guests reaching Anchorage, Alaska, which is serviced by numerous commercial carriers. Most guests will need or want to spend that Thursday night in Anchorage at one of our recommended hotels the night prior to traveling to the lodge.

    Anchorage to King Salmon on the Lodge’s Private Plane!

    The second leg of the trip, occurring on Friday, is a one hour thirty minute ride (285 miles) aboard the lodge’s private plane from Anchorage to King Salmon, Alaska. No need to travel commercially from Anchorage to King Salmon Airport. The cost of round trip air between Anchorage and King Salmon IS INCLUDED IN YOUR TRIP COST. Upon arrival at the lodge, you will have time to get unpacked and get oriented before getting your fishing license meeting your guide and getting outfitted for any necessary gear.

    Sample Itinerary

    Thursday

    Travel to Anchorage, Alaska. Spend the night in Anchorage at a recommended hotel. Hotel accommodations and meals are not included in package cost.

    Friday

    Travel to King Salmon on board the lodge’s private plane! Upon arrival at the lodge, you will have time to get unpacked and get oriented before getting your fishing licenses. That evening you will meet your guides and get outfitted for any necessary gear.

    Saturday - Thursday

    Fishing days! Each morning will begin with breakfast, served between 6:AM and 7:AM. After breakfast, get your gear and meet your guide. Planes will depart lodge at beginning at 7:30 - 8:00 AM. After fishing, planes, boats, and anglers will return to the lodge between 4:30 and 5:30PM. Cocktails and hors d’ouevres will be served before dinner, which is usually scheduled for 7:30PM.

    Guests at Rapids Camp are booked on a full week fly out package that includes six fly out trips if desired. Many guests often prefer the local fishing on the Naknek in front of the lodge.

    Friday

    Departure day. Guests check out of the lodge after breakfast and are shuttled to King Salmon Airport (20 minutes) and are flown back to Anchorage on the lodge’s private plane. There is no additional overnight required in Anchorage en route back to the lower forty-eight, and most commercial flights are “red-eye” overnight flights arriving home early the following morning.

    *Shorter week fishing packages are available based upon availability. See Packages and Prices for Details.

    *On some occasions it is possible to fly directly through to King Salmon via Seattle, Washington with Alaska Airlines. Please inquire for details if you would like to avoid spending the night in Anchorage the Thursday prior to the Friday arrival at the lodge.

    Best Plane : Guest Ratio in Alaska

    RCL ensures the ability to deliver great trips by owning three DeHavilland Beavers on floats and one Turbine Otter on amphibious floats. Enough cannot be said about this fleet of airplanes! Unlike nearly every other operation in Alaska, will this many planes (accommodating only 16-20 guests max), there is always a seat on a plane for guests at Rapids Camp. No need to wait your turn – just hop on the plane with your guide and go.

    The Beavers 2297R, 95RC and the Otter 205RC, have all been stripped down to bare metal and completely restored to a like new condition. As with all aspects of the RCL program, Mr. Shults has spared NO expense. We are confident that no other lodge has planes quite so spectacular. With the only heated hanger in King Salmon, RCL’s planes are kept immaculate and maintained to the highest standards.

    Turbine Otter

    Originally known as the “King Beaver” the Otter is based on the same principles, but larger in size, than the three Beavers. The Otter is one of 26 planes in the world retrofitted with a 1000hp Garret Turbine engine to increase performance and range. Set up to fly with instruments, there is no safer way to get around Alaska. It also can accommodate up to 10 passengers comfortably allowing for large groups to visit the saltwater program cohesively.

    Three Beavers on Floats

    RCL owns three DeHavilland DHC-2 Beavers on floats, probably the most famous bush planes in the world. “Cherry” is often the word used to describe their planes. Perfect for groups of 4 guests and 2 guides, you will fly in style and comfort with RCL.

    Wheeled Beaver

    At certain times during the season, the lodge will convert one of the Beavers on pontoons to be equipped with tundra tires. The converted wheeled plane opens up territory simply not available otherwise.

    The lodge continues to locate new landing areas on coastal rivers and other inaccessible locations – a whole new ball game when compared to the limitations of the traditional float plane. Imagine strolling in a small clear river where 5-pound Dolly Varden or chrome Silver Salmon jump on your line every cast. The wheeled plane provides the kind of flexibility to reach areas not considered by other lodges. Not that the wheeled plane may or may not be in use during your stay at the lodge.

    Seasonality / When to Go

    Rapids Camp Lodge is open from early June through October 1.

    Choosing a date to fish anywhere in Western Alaska is completely contingent upon which species of fish you would like to target. Rapids Camp Lodge is open from early June through early October. Fishing is excellent any time in the season, but the conditions and species available vary from month to month and may impact when you decide to visit. All months are excellent for viewing wildlife, and anglers often find themselves sharing the river or stream with multiple grizzly bears doing a little fishing of their own.

    The annual salmon run plays a huge role in the productivity and style of fishing. Every summer millions of Pacific Salmon return to their home streams to spawn and die, contributing in this natural cycle of life that maintains the health and productivity of the fishery.

    June (Dry Flies & King Salmon)

    The month of June is marked by the arrival of the mighty king salmon and the mass exodus of salmon fry heading down stream to the ocean. Trout fishing during this period is typically very excellent and perhaps the best time of the year to experience some of Alaska’s dry fly-fishing for rainbows as well as swinging flies and trolling for Chinook Salmon.

    July (Diversity in Species) – Great Month for “Everything Alaska”

    July is a month noted for its huge variety of options including the peak of the king and sockeye runs as well as the addition of the chum and pink salmon. By the end of the month nearly every fish migration is in effect on some level, and July is a wonderful month for anglers looking to experience a sampling of nearly all the species and styles of fishing Alaska offers.

    August (Silver Salmon)

    August is the month of the silver salmon (Coho), the most acrobatic and eager of the five pacific salmon species. Although pinks and chums are still around in August, the silver salmon steal the show. As the silvers make their grand entrance, most other species are on their spawning beds and the rainbows, char and dolly varden are in tow feeding non-stop on the protein enriched salmon eggs. Fishing technique during august typically revolves around feeding egg patterns to eager and focused rainbows, dolly varden and char gorging below spawning salmon.

    September (Rainbows!)

    The highlight of the month are the huge rainbows! After a full summer of feeding on salmon eggs and flesh, rainbows are at their fattest weights of the year. The salmon runs are complete by the end of the month and the biggest rainbows are still on the move feeding on anything they can grab in anticipation of the conclusion of the gluttonous summer. September and early October offer the angler the best opportunity to catch a real legendary monster Alaskan Rainbow over thirty inches on the Naknek or the Kvichak. Both rivers are also excellent venues for learning the two-handed or spey cast while swinging flies for the big boys.

    Alaskan Weather

    The weather is about the only thing you CANNOT count on with your trip to Alaska. Guests must plan on every type of weather to occur at anytime. Daytime temperatures range from cool to hot and rain showers can occur at any moment. On any given day you could see hot weather turn to cold, calm turn to windy, and sunny to rainy almost before your eyes. If you decide to visit Alaska a rain jacket is an absolute must. Typically, June and July are a little warmer and drier than August and September.

    2014 RATES

    All prices based upon double occupancy/participation

    7 Night / 6 Day Package - $8,295 Per Angler

    4 Night / 3-1/2 Day Package - $6,295 Per Angler (Monday-Friday)

    *Please inquire about short week itineraries. Oftentimes available on request.

    What's Included
    7 Nights double occupancy accommodations at Rapids Camp Lodge; Airfare to King Salmon, Alaska from Anchorage with the lodge’s private aircraft; 6 Days guided fly-out fishing with shared guide; Daily transportation via aircraft to rivers, streams, lakes, and wildlife viewing areas; Daily housekeeping and midweek laundry service; Three meals per day from a daily menu; All transfers between the King Salmon Airport and Lodge; Use of chest waders, fly rods & reels, flies, tackle; Preparation of all harvested game in approved shipping container for traveling home

    What's Not Included
    Roundtrip airfare to/from Anchorage, Alaska; Accommodations while in Anchorage Thursday night prior to Friday arrival at the lodge (when applicable); Alcohol at the lodge (with the exception of wine with dinner); Applicable fishing licenses; Use of lodge telephone and fax; Souvenirs; All applicable gratuities (10-20% of trip cost is customary)

    Terms & Conditions

    Tailwaters Travel must adhere to the cancellation policies of the guides, outfitters and lodges which it represents. Rapids Camp Lodge’s policy follows: A non-refundable fifty-percent (50%) deposit is required at the time of booking to confirm all reservations. All trips must be paid in full 60 days prior to departure day.

    A deposit may be transferred to another person who is not booked at the lodge for the current season. Deposits are refundable for cancellation only after/if the cancelled space has been filled. Refunds are not granted for non-flying days due to weather or reasons out of the lodge’s control. Refunds of deposits/payments made on credit cards will be charged a 3.5% service charge to fully compensate Tailwaters Travel for all bank charges incurred. Receipt of deposit and/or final payment is acknowledgement that registrant has read and accepts the cancellation, refund and responsibility clauses.

    Consider Travel Insurance!

    Given the inherent strict refund policies associated with nearly all fishing packages, we cannot stress the importance of obtaining travel insurance to protect your investment. Travelers can obtain coverage for pre-existing health problems (related to yourself, your family, business partners, or your traveling partners), emergency evacuation, lost baggage, delay, life insurance packages; even “no questions asked” or “for work reasons” coverage.

    We will provide you with more detailed information about travel insurance from our sponsored provider, Travel Guard, when you book a trip with Tailwaters Travel. We can conveniently process a very comprehensive insurance policy for you in-house after asking a few simple questions.

    Call today to protect your investment: (888) 824-5420

    Please review our Policies & Cancellations section.

    Non-Angling Activities

    Although fishing is the predominant activity at Rapids Camp, we encourage non-angling companions to visit the lodge as well. We frequently send families and small children to the lodge every season and it is a total homerun. Perhaps the best way to see Alaska’s beautiful countryside, wildlife, and wilderness is on a fly-out fishing trip. Although daily activities are oriented around fishing, guests at RCL can detour to enjoy some wildlife viewing, an Eskimo village, go on a hike, etc...

    Wildlife encounters and photographic opportunities are everywhere including daily sightings of bears as well as wolves, moose, bald eagles, other bird life, and all of the marine species associated with the saltwater fishing program. Rapids Camp is by no means a pretentious “fly fishing only” program. Beginner anglers are welcome and encouraged to use spinning equipment instead of fly-rods if required to make guests more comfortable and successful.

    Bears & Other Wildlife

    Get ready to see a lot of bears! Katmai National Park has one of the densest populations of brown bears in Alaska (more than 2000). First time Alaskan anglers are blown away, but by the end of the week bears are almost an afterthought. Nearly every river system is flooded with brown bears during the annual summer run of salmon. You will share the river with bears doing fishing on their just about every day. Rapids Camp Guides are well versed in bear etiquette, and will train anglers on the proper protocol when bears are encountered. Although the guides are armed with shotguns in bear country, bad bear incidents are super rare in Alaska. Since 1996, Rapids Camp Lodge has not had a single run-in with an aggressive bear. They are actually very docile creatures as well as a memorable and integrated part of the Alaskan fishing experience.

    It is also possible to see wolves, moose, otters, foxes, bald eagles, tons of other bird life, and all the marine species such as whales or even orcas when participating in the saltwater program. Photographers and non-anglers will love the accessibility to these species provided by the largest fleet of aircraft in Alaska.