Self-Guided Fishing with Some Help From Us

In our previous post we addressed some concerns our first time guests have with driving their own fishing boat. Today, we explain why Doc Warner’s has chosen to use a self-guided fishing system and how we work to enhance that experience.

We’re here for you!

On top of all the teaching we do prior to sending you out, we also use what we call safety boats. These boats roam the waters around the lodge, checking on each of the guest boats to make sure everything is going smoothly. Those driving the safety boats are available to answer questions and give suggestions on how to improve fishing success. By the end of the second or third day, the safety boats transition into safety boats. At this point, we’re confident you will be so comfortable with the fishing process that you won’t need the help of the safety boats.

Fishing in Juneau Alaska

In the evenings after dinner, we provide a “fish chat”. During the fish chat, our staff provides additional information about each of the fish. Additionally, each guest gets an opportunity to share the details of their day: what was and wasn’t working, good spots for fishing, etc.

Our method

We are constantly refining our self-guided process, which helps our guests be very successful in catching fish.

There are many reasons why we at Doc Warner’s use a self-guided boating/fishing system. First of all, we want you to become the master of your own adventure; this way, your excursion becomes a do-it-yourself project. Secondly, we do not want to inhibit your experience in any way. As the master of your boat, you and your party can fish as long as you’d like between the hours of 5:30 AM and 8:00 PM (depending on daylight); you are not tied to the schedule of another fisherman or guide. You can even choose to stop fishing and simply enjoy the scenery.

Scenic view in Juneau Alaska

Time spent fishing is the primary determinant for size of fish caught: the longer you spend out fishing, the better your chances are for catching a large fish. Thirdly, this method allows us to keep our prices low. Consider the cost of having a charter captain for each boat. By using our safety boats, we can efficiently watch over multiple fishing boats at one time (1 safety boat for every 6-12 fishing boats).

It doesn’t take very long before you feel comfortable guiding your own boat. At that point this adventure truly becomes yours – you can do what you want when you want it and just enjoy your vacation. Just think about the sense of pride you’ll feel with this kind of autonomy.  Many times we’ve heard a guest at the end of the week make the comment: “I can’t believe I was paying a charter to do this before!” After your vacation to Doc Warner’s, we are confident you’ll never fish the same again.

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Mark Warner
Mark H. Warner was raised in Juneau and he has been fishing the waters of Alaska for more than 30 years. He grew up working with his father developing Doc Warner’s from its earliest days. After getting his Ph.D. in Mechanical engineering, he went to work in the industry where he later completed an Executive MBA. Then in 2010, his father, Doc, offered Mark and his wife, Kristina, the opportunity to move back to Alaska and operate the lodge full-time. Today, Mark has over 25 years of experience with Doc Warner’s. His knowledge and experience teaching people about self-guided fishing in Alaska are now used to create lasting memories for Doc Warner’s guests.
Posted in Driving a Boat, Self-Guided Fishing
2 comments on “Self-Guided Fishing with Some Help From Us
  1. Dave Hill says:

    Self-Guided sounds great, but with little experience fishing for salmon and no experience with halibut, it’s also a little scary. My wife and I will be coming up to fish with you in July. Is there anything I should be doing ahead of time to help with the learning curve?

    • Mark Warner Mark Warner says:

      About 30 days before you visit us, we will email you a link to our orientation. It is a lengthy document, but we recommend you spend some time with it to learn what you already are confident with and where you have gaps in knowledge. When you arrive we can better customize your orientation if you have already identified what you do not know.

      Likewise, your arms will get a good work out while fishing with us, so any physical training in that area will serve you well!

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