Phil's Smiling Salmon Guide Service – Alaska

If you can think of nothing better than drifting down a river that’s home to beautiful scenery, unspoiled nature, and some world-famous freshwater fish, then join Phil’s Smiling Salmon Guide Service in Kasilof, AK. Captain
Phil Desautels can’t wait to introduce you to Kasilof River, a drift boat-only fishery that’s second-to-none when it comes to offering a true escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life!

Capt. Phil has been working as a river fishing guide for over 35 years now, and specializes in helping guests go after some very famous freshwater fish – Steelhead, Coho Salmon, and Chinook Salmon. Whether you’re an experienced angler who wants to make the transition from local fishing to hooking these big names, or are a total newbie, he’ll teach you all about these species – as well as the best ways to catch them.

The Kasilof River is for drift boats only, and you’ll be cruising on board your captain’s 18’ Willie Boats vessel, newly restored in 2019. She’s the perfect option for anglers who want a quiet and relaxing trip down the river! She can accommodate up to 4 guests, so you’ll have a truly hands-on, personal experience. Capt. Phil prioritizes the safety of his anglers, so you’ll find life jackets for all ages on board.

It’s all about the freshwater trifecta of Steelhead, Coho, and Chinook Salmon here, and your captain will show you the best techniques to hook these species. You’ll be trying out anything from drift fishing, to trolling, to bottom fishing. Don’t worry if you’re a new angler – your captain will show you the ropes, and you’ll be soon tangling lines with these feisty fish. After you’ve reeled ‘em in, your catch will be cleaned and filleted for you at no extra cost.

You’ll be provided with top-notch rods and reels, lures, and tackle. All you need to bring are snacks and drinks, appropriate clothing, and a fishing license. Get ready to experience the total escapism that comes with a visit to Phil’s Smiling Salmon Guide Service!



Select date to see available trips and rates:

  • Private trip
    Full Day Trip
    FREE Cancellation 3 days notice
    8 Hour Trip, starts at 6:00 AM
    Seasonal trip May 15 - Sep 15
    $500
    price breakdown
    $500
    This 8-hour trip will see you drifting along the waters of the Kasilof River, where you'll have the chance to hook into huge Steelhead, Chinook Salmon, and Coho Salmon. Capt. Phil will have you trying out a variety of techniques to reel in your catch, and will make sure you're well-prepared for these feisty fish with top-notch rods and reels, lures, and tackle. All you need to bring with you are your favorite snacks and drinks, appropriate clothing, and a valid fishing license.
  • Private trip
    Half Day Trip
    FREE Cancellation 3 days notice
    4 Hour Trip, starts at 9:00 AM
    Seasonal trip May 15 - Sep 15
    $350
    price breakdown
    $350
    Join your captain on this morning adventure, and get ready to target some world-famous fish against a backdrop of incredible scenery. You'll have the chance to hook Steelhead, Chinook (King) Salmon, and Coho (Silver) Salmon along the Kasilof River. Your captain will have you trying out a range of techniques, and will make sure you're equipped with lures, rods, reels, and tackle. All you need to bring is some sensible clothing and a license. Your departure time is flexible.
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About the Captain

Phil Desautels
Kasilof, Alaska, United States
4 Fishing Reports
ID & License verified
7 Customer Reviews
Response time 1 hour
Member since November 2018
Capt. Phil has been a river guide for over 35 years. Back in the day, when he was going to college, his friends had drift boats and were making money – he thought this was cool so he bought one himself, and found that doing so allowed him to pursue his passion, make some money, and introduce people of all ages and skill levels to the joy of angling. His favorite part of the job is being outside, exploring nature, and enjoying the smiles on the faces of his guests when they land their dream catch. Capt. Phil also takes part in a tournament each year. It's a big Steelhead derby, and all the money raised goes to a local hatchery.

About this listing

Targeted Species

Rainbow Trout (Steelhead) Rainbow Trout (Steelhead)
Salmon (Chinook) Salmon (Chinook)
Salmon (Coho) Salmon (Coho)

Boat Specs

Willie Boats (Drift boat) originally built in 1994, and restored in 2019. Powered by 2 2HP Gull Oars engines, with a maximum cruising speed of 5 knots.

Length
18 ft
Capacity
4 persons

Types of Fishing

River Fishing

Fishing Techniques

Light Tackle
Bottom Fishing
Trolling
Drift Fishing

Amenities

Life Jackets
Ice Box
Life Jackets
Ice Box

Trip Includes

Rods, reels & tackle
Lures
Catch cleaning & filleting

Cancellation Policy

Free cancellation up to 3 days prior to trip

Customers can cancel or modify their booking up to 3 days before the trip date free of charge. If the trip is canceled or modified later, or in the event of a no-show, 100% of the deposit will be charged.

Listing Policies

Pickup agreed upon reservation
Transfer to/from departure site may be available and included in price depending on your location and distance from the dock.
Child Friendly
You Keep Catch
Catch and Release Allowed

Payment

Book with 10% deposit
When the captain confirms your trip, FishingBooker charges your credit card a 10% deposit to guarantee your reservation.
Pay remaining balance to captain
The remaining balance is to be paid directly to the charter operator on or prior to your trip date in one of the following payment methods:
Cash
Checks

Kasilof Fishing Calendar

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Customer Reviews

Rating Summary
Photos by reviewers (10)
4.62
out of 5 stars from 7 reviews
Boat
Crew
Experience
Dream Fulfilled
Half Day Fishing Trip
Half Day Fishing Trip
+7
Angler Rating
5
1
1
0
0
Anglers Claimed
Good experience
71%
Friendly captain
100%
Recommend this charter
86%
Appropriate for children
71%
Satisfied with the boat
100%
Catch intended fish
57%
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5 of 7 reviews
Steven C.
Kuna, ID
 5.00
Experience:
Boat
Crew
Overall

Fishing with Phil

VERIFIED   July 23, 2020
Steven C. recommends Phil's Smiling Salmon Guide Service – Alaska
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Steven C. recommends Phil's Smiling Salmon Guide Service – Alaska
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Chad H.
Eagle River, AK
 5.00
Experience:
Boat
Crew
Overall

Dream Fulfilled

VERIFIED   July 24, 2019
My party of 3 was lucky enough to get some seats on Phil’s boat for some King Salmon fishing on the Kasilof River near the...
Chad H. recommends Phil's Smiling Salmon Guide Service – Alaska
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  Phil Desautels Captain replied

Caroline S.
Inwood, WV
 5.00
Experience:
Boat
Crew
Overall

Great day on the Kasilof River

VERIFIED   July 8, 2019
We didn’t know what to expect when we booked this trip. Captain Phil kept in contact to let us know what was going on with...
Caroline S. recommends Phil's Smiling Salmon Guide Service – Alaska
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Dawn M.
Spokane, WA
 5.00
Experience:
Boat
Crew
Overall

Half Day Fishing Trip

VERIFIED   July 19, 2019
My boys and I had a wonderful time fishing with Captain Phil! He knew where the sweet spot was so my youngest could land his...
Dawn M. recommends Phil's Smiling Salmon Guide Service – Alaska
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Susan B.
Mount Vernon, WA
 5.00
Experience:
Boat
Crew
Overall

Great Time on Beautiful River

VERIFIED   May 30, 2019
Phil was very personable and knowledgeable. Had a great time!
Susan B. recommends Phil's Smiling Salmon Guide Service – Alaska
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  Phil Desautels Captain replied