Yeah you can do great trips up here for less than some people think. Many people think of lodges like the one i work at that are 6 to 7 grand a week and although they do offer fishing advantages. float planes trips are included in the package and since there are so many rivers around you never fish a river that's not fishing good. Compared to cheaper trips where your stuck on one river or pay extra for fly outs so if the home river is blown or whatever your pretty much screwed.
That being said most people including the guides like myself that work at those lodges can't spend that kind of money!!
There are sevaral trips I can think of right now for less than that.
First one is the trip duckydoty did, Naknek river camps offer a guided trips for a week on the nak for 1700pp and you can fly out for extra. Theya along and rainbow bend(who i have stayed with and highly recomend. also offer diy trips for around 1500, it includes a boat and gas. This is a sweet deal no matter what your going for. All you need to know is I have had several 50 fish days there with the smallest rainbow being around 18 inches, average around 24 and biggest around 35", record fish there for me was 35x21.5. I have yet to find a better river for Big rainbows. You can also pay extra to go to a smaller river like Little Ku or American. It adds cost but catching 10 pound trout in a 10 to 20 foot wide creek like little ku or catching 25 inchers on dries on american is worth it. Also the Naknek is killer fly fishing for sockeye and Coho. Nothing like catching 6 to 16 pound coho till your arms fall off.
You could consider the situk for steelhead. I know several GL guys who do that trip and say it's a lot like fishing at their home , small with tons of log jams. Only difference is all the fish are wild and routinely get over 36 inches and every year several are caugh over 40, record fish was a 47 inch 35 pound buck :buff: Its really road accessible so it's more crowded than say the naknek but that also means that you can do a very cheap trip whether you stay at a bead and breakfast or just camp. Most times i would reccomend a guide if your new to a spot in alaska but the fishing is very simalar to fishing the GL so you would do just fine.
You could also consider the Karluk for a DIY trip. The flight on a float plane is around 1400 but it's per plane so you can split costs with people and then bring all your camping gear. It's roughing it in cold weather but hey catching 20 plus wild PNW steelies a day is pretty much unheard of outside of this river.
Or how about renting a car and fishing up north for 15 pound dollies which are like big brook trout on steroids. Or staying at a DIY lodge on the Kvichiak or fly fishing from a rented Kayak in the salt water in prince william islands. Just need a cheap place to say and a kayak and your ready for 15 to 20 pound coho all day with a clauser.
And that's just a small list! Point is there are lost of more affordable trips up here whether you want a guide or not, stay in a tent or cabin or travel by plane or car.
One of these days we should do a TFF get together up here with one of the more affordable trips. I know i've kicked the idea around with Carlin and Steve. Maybe in a few years when i'm not guiding anymore I could Take some time off and host some sort of trip possibly with carlin. Even on the road system on Kodiak or the mainland a good local fisherman like Carlin or me could put you on some big Trout or Salmon.
Carlin's trip suggestion isn't too bad either, you can fish by road for 2 or 3 weeks and catch rainbows like this
Char like this
or coho like this, obviously i did