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Baranof is listed in the book, World’s Great Fishing Resorts, by M. Caldwell, it certainly deserves its place. Originally built in the 1980s by Ernest Gruening –the territorial governor, Baranof Wilderness Lodge is now owned by Mike and Sally Trotter. A great team! It has earned a 4 star rating in Best Places Alaska and considered the very best in this region. The Closest city is Sitka, Alaska. Not only will you find Baranof to be fun and exciting, with world-class fishing, but you will feel like family as you are greeted by Mike and Sally and their staff of cooks, housekeepers, and guides. And – the feeling lasts through your entire stay and lingers after. Very few have gone to Baranof Wilderness Lodge and not wanted to return – many don’t want to leave!
The main lodge at Baranof is where you will gather for meals and socializing, but you will be housed in private cabins with your own bathroom and a porch area. The cabins are small, clean, and cozy and will meet your needs. You will know you are in the “Wilderness” when you hear the stream outside and see the salmon swimming in it, or see the soaring eagles, the towering trees, or maybe the whales in the bay. But when meals are served, you will be delighted with extravagant and gourmet offerings along with scrumptious desserts. Crab lovers will think they’ve died and gone to heaven and don’t miss the halibut salad!
If you can imagine top brand fishing gear, a fleet of boats so clean you could eat off the floor (not advisable) and guides so experienced and pleasant that they make you feel like a pro even when you are not or let you be the pro that you are, then you are imagining Baranof Fishing. You start the day with a piping hot beverage of your choice delivered to your cabin porch. Next it’s a short stroll over to the Lodge for a hearty breakfast followed by heading for the water of your choice. There is saltwater for Salmon, Halibut, Yellow Eye, Rockfish, and more, freshwater streams and rivers for trout, salmon, Dolly Varden, and Cutthroat, or possibly a day of Whale and Bear watching on the ocean and bay. Though all the tackle you need will be provided, you are welcome to bring your own. When you arrive back at the pier, your catch will be cleaned and frozen and a large box of fish will go home with you – lest you forget how very delicious Alaskan fish is.
Typically you will fly into Seattle, then on to Sitka where you will spend the night. Next morning you will take a short taxi ride to the Sitka airport and board a float plane to Baranof. On the return, plan to take another float plane trip or a large catamaran back to Sitka where you will overnight, then pick up your fish and fly home.
In addition to the incredible fishing there is Whale watching, clamming, crabbing, shrimping, beach-combing, kayaking, visit to the hot springs, Spa treatments, or “Porching” (a day relaxing taking in the sights and sounds of the wilderness, or reading, or writing - seated on the large deck outside the lodge or on your own porch.) Each evening after dinner the next day’s activities are planned with you so that you can do what you want to do. However you spend your time at Baranof, you will be assured of incredible memories. This destination is the one to share with loved ones, making treasured memories of a lifetime!
While in Sitka, take advantage of the Alaskan Culture by which you will be surrounded. The Raptor Center, Totem Square, the Russian Cathedral and Cemetery, The Russian Block House, Sitka Historical Museum, Sitka National Historic Park, Fortress of the Bear, Gift shops, and Restaurants. In fact, you may want to take an extra day in Sitka. Many of the attractions are in walking distance from the hotels or inns.