Since 2015, TJ & CJ Nelson have been tying the “Salmon Stryker” flies that they produce and sell on the banks of the Kenai River at their shop:  The Snack & Tack. Also available online by emailing

Guests from around the world, as young as 6 years old and up to 80, have caught the first salmon of their life right here on our shore with the Salmon Stryker fly!  Designed to imitate krill, the primary food source of Sockeye Salmon in the ocean, these flies light up as they hit the water thanks to the ultraviolet crystal flash material that make up their wings–producing an iridescent glow of greens, purples, pinks and reds. The head and body are a fluorescent reddish-orange material that subtly mimic salmon roe, preying on the salmon’s natural instinct to pursue their own eggs or the eggs of other salmon. With .30mm lead wrap on the shank of an Octopus 2.0 hook, the fly travels at the prescribed depth needed for successful hookups.

We’ve witnessed the success of this fly first hand over the past several years, with fish taking the fly in their mouth, even swallowing deep as if it were bait. Despite the fallacy that Sockeye Salmon don’t bite or strike, the “Salmon Stryker” fly proves they do!  Come test for yourself, or order online by emailing

In addition to Sockeye or Red Salmon (as locals call them) hitting these flies, we’ve also discovered to our delight that Silver Salmon, Pink Salmon, Rainbow Trout and Dolly Varden will all strike them as well, making this our go to fly of choice in our water.  Tied on a larger 6.0 to 7.0 hook, the Salmon Stryker fly even catches King Salmon in gravel beds of the Kenai and other area rivers!

A little bit of history….

This design is an original creation of an avid expert fly tying friend and good neighbor for many years, Ron Schwing. Ron is a retired Air Force officer as well as a retired school teacher, and he has been an instrumental influence on our young boys growing up here on the Kenai River. Every summer since 2002, Ron and his sweet wife Cheryl have shown kindness and encouragement to the twins, and in more recent years Ron has taken the time to pass on his fly tying skills to the boys and our entire family are very thankful. Our guests are unknowing benefactors of this neighborly kindness, and our good ole’ neighbor Ron probably doesn’t know how many fishermen, young & old, he has helped to realize their Alaska Dream!  Thanks Ron…..keep on tyin’, keep on fishin’.