Hunters and anglers working together to preserve fish and game habitats and hunting and fishing opportunities on our public lands in Alaska.

Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska

December 12, 2008 Newsletter

Holiday greetings to each of you! I hope that your fall hunting and fishing seasons have been safe and successful. I’ve had a decent time catching smallmouth bass, and hunting deer and pheasants here in South Dakota. It’s just a reminder that no matter where we live, there are outdoor opportunities. And, no matter where we live, we all have a stake in management of public lands in Alaska – where we can live out dreams of hunting and fishing in wild places!

The Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska (SAA) will be producing its first print newsletter in coming weeks. If we have your mailing address, you can expect a copy in the mail shortly after the calendar turns to 2009. Copies will also be distributed at various sport shows during the coming months. The newsletter will recap some of the highlights of 2008 as well as look ahead to what 2009 may bring for Alaska’s incredible wild lands and the fish and game they support. Places like Bristol Bay, the Tongass National Forest, the wetlands at Teshekpuk Lake, and others will be counting on hunters and anglers like you to win conservation protections. You’ll have opportunities to contact a new Presidential administration, heads of federal agencies, and a new Congress, educating them on why sportspersons hold Alaska in such high regard.

Bristol Bay News
Photo by Scott Hed

In late November, the federal Bureau of Land Management announced plans to open roughly 1 million acres of lands along the Kvichak, Nushagak, and Mulchatna rivers to mineral exploration. Read the story from the Anchorage Daily News here.

For a primer on the mining prospects being considered in the Bristol Bay region, read this article from the Dec. 3 Bristol Bay Times. Between the proposed opening of BLM lands and lands that the state has already leased for mineral exploration, the footprint on the region would be massive.

The Anchorage Daily News ran a cautionary opinion piece from a Nevada natural resources professor with 25 years of studying the mining industry in regard to Anglo-American’s track record and what mining could mean to the future of Bristol Bay’s lands and waters. Read it here.

Tongass National Forest News
Photo by Scott Hed

The Tongass Futures Round Table is a collaborative effort to engage the many and diverse stakeholders with interests in the Tongass. Meetings are held several times each year around Southeast Alaska, and participants include conservation groups, timber interests, tourism businesses, local governments, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, the U.S. Forest Service, and more. The most recent Round Table meetings were held in Ketchikan the first week of December. We’ll have a report on the Round Table and upcoming opportunities for restoration projects and long-term protections for valuable habitats on the Tongass in the SAA print newsletter.

2009 Sport Show Schedule

Photo by Anders Gustafson
Photo by Scott Hed

“Sport show season” is nearly upon us. The SAA has been welcomed at dozens of shows across the country the past two years and 2009 will again find the SAA booth making the rounds. It’s a great chance to visit with anglers and hunters about what makes Alaska such a tremendous destination and what they can do to help keep it that way.

In an effort to conserve both funds and my physical and mental well-being the SAA will be soliciting volunteers to work at any and all of these shows. I will be at a number of them, but not all of them. Thank you in advance to the Federation of Fly Fishers, the Renewable Resources Coalition, and Trout Unlimited's Alaska office for their willingness to help staff the booth at a number of shows. Also, a few individuals have already come forward to volunteer at shows in their local areas. Thank you in advance!

Jan. 8-11

Dallas Safari Club convention

Dallas, TX

Jan. 8-11

International Sportsmen’s Expo

San Mateo, CA

Jan. 9-11

The Fly Fishing Show

Denver, CO

Jan. 16-18

The Fly Fishing Show

Marlborough, MA

Jan. 22-25

International Sportsmen’s Expo

Denver, CO

Jan. 23-25

The Fly Fishing Show

Somerset, NJ

Jan. 30-31

The Fly Fishing Show

Charlotte, NC

Feb. 6-8

The Fly Fishing Show

Bellevue, WA

Feb. 14-15

The Fly Fishing Show

Portland, OR

Feb. 21-22

The Fly Fishing Show

Pasadena, CA

Feb. 27-Mar. 1

The Fly Fishing Show

Pleasanton, CA

Feb. 27-Mar. 1

International Sportsmen’s Expo

Glendale, AZ

Mar. 6-8

Great Waters Fly Fishing Expo

Bloomington, MN

Mar. 12-15

Northwest Sport Show

Minneapolis, MN

Red Gold, the award-winning feature-length Bristol Bay documentary from FeltSoul Media, will be shown daily at each of The Fly Fishing Show tour stops in 2009. If you’ve not seen it yet, be prepared to be blown away. Red Gold has been winning accolades and awards at film festivals across the USA and abroad.

If you are interested in volunteering a few hours or a day or two this coming winter, please contact me ( or 605-351-1646). You’ll get a free pass to the show. It’s not difficult work and you meet a lot of great people who love Alaska, hunting, fishing, and the great outdoors. Just a word of warning though: Often you’ll find terrific buys on some new gear that you surely “need.” Bring your wallet!

Thank you to these shows for providing complementary exhibit space to the SAA. Please attend these shows in your area and support them – they’re doing their part to help spread the word about Alaska conservation! For more details on the shows, you can visit their web sites:

Northwest Sportshow   Dallas Safari Club

Great Waters Fly Fishing Expo


The Fly Fishing Show

Bristol Bay Moose Hunt Promotion
Bristol Bay Moose Hunt Promotion

Would you like the chance to hunt moose in southwest Alaska in 2009? How about a new Kimber rifle topped with a Leupold scope? What if we threw in a sweet set of hunting outerwear from Sitka Gear and some base layers from Polartec?

Would you believe there is a promotion going on right now that will offer you the chance to take home ALL of those items? Combined retail value is about $12,000!

Seriously, this might be one of the greatest promotions going right now. And it’s all for a tremendous cause.

The Bristol Bay region in Alaska is truly a sportsperson’s paradise. Anglers and hunters from across the globe travel there to partake in the bounty of the world’s largest runs of wild salmon, trophy rainbow trout, herds of caribou, brown bears, and monster moose. There’s a threat facing this region and sportsmen and women are coming to the defense of one of the world’s top hunting and angling destinations.

One way to help the cause is to make a donation to the Sportsman's Alliance for Alaska to help educate and mobilize anglers and hunters in this important campaign. For a suggested donation of $50, you will be entered in the drawing for:

The companies supporting this donation should be recognized for their commitment to conservation of our hunting heritage and wild places.

Only 500 eligible donations will be accepted on this promotion, and there is a maximum of 4 entries per person for the drawing. With odds like that, a modest donation toward a great cause could have you packing your bags for Alaska in the fall of 2009 with some new gear in tow.

In case you do not hunt, the winner drawn may choose to accept a $5,000 cash payment in lieu of hunt prize package (hunt, gun, scope, clothing).

Float the Koktuli River in July 2009

Photo Credit, Castaway Films Alaska Rainbow Adventures

Alaska Rainbow Adventures is planning a float fishing trip on the Koktuli River for July 18-24, 2009, and they have generously provided two spots to the Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska to help raise funds for the Bristol Bay conservation campaign.

The trip will be for a total of six or nine anglers (two or three rafts) plus a guide in each raft. This is a tremendous opportunity to visit “ground zero” for the Pebble Mine, as the Pebble Partnership has applied for water rights to the Koktuli to feed its operation.

The price for this trip is $3,695 per person, from Iliamna, Alaska. The two spots donated to the SAA will be sold (as a pair) by online auction in early 2009. The starting bid will be $4,000 total for both spots.

Full details on the trip may be found through the SAA home page.

Other Ways to get Involved

Aside from volunteering at any of the shows in 2009, consider any of these opportunities to make a financial contribution to the Bristol Bay campaign. Every little bit helps us make more anglers and hunters aware of the conservation work being done to keep Alaska the dream destination that it is.

Super 5 reel from Abel

Rod/reel/line combo from Sage/Redington/Rio

SAA Online Auction

Happy holidays to you and your family, and best wishes for a great 2009 to come.

Thank you for all you do for Alaska conservation!

Scott Hed
Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska

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