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#490120 - 05/15/18 06:01 PM Building trout pond in Alaska?
Arctic Al Offline


Registered: 05/15/18
Posts: 1
Loc: Alaska
Hi all,

New to the forum. Came across this site while researching a pond build that I am contemplating. I figured I would throw my thoughts on here and get some advice from people that have way more knowledge than I do!

During the summer, I live on the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska. I own a couple of acres that I built a cabin on that overlooks our grassy meadow which is about an acre in size.

The reason it is a grass filled meadow is that it is too wet for spruce or birch to grow. In my immediate area, the surrounding 12 acres or so is higher ground, and all of the rain and snow runoff ends up in my meadow. Often when I arrive in the spring, I have a flooded meadow with 2 feet of standing water flooding it. I usually run a 200 foot hose over the nearest ridge and pump out the water to keep the mosquitos down.

When I built the cabin, I dug a few test holes out in the meadow looking for gravel. I never found any. All I found underground after digging 12 feet down was blue clay. Which explains why the spring runoff just stays on the surface. The next morning when I went to fill in my test holes, they were all full of crystal clear water.

My first thought was to just dig a drainage ditch that the runoff water from the meadow could flow into making it easier to pump out in the spring. My second thought is to dig a pond about a 1/2 acre in size. It would be really aesthetically pleasing, and I'm sure our local moose and ducks would like it as well.

I own a fishing charter company up here, so obviously my mind wanders to fish. The only fish I could stock that wouldn't get me into a load of trouble up here are rainbow trout.

But I have some concerns...like, failure. I'm not here in the winter to maintain a pond everyday. It gets pretty cold! And we get a lot of snow. I imagine the ice would get 3-4 feet thick and would be covered in 3 feet of snow during winter.

There are thousands of small lakes in Alaska that have trout however...even way up in the interior that are frozen over for 6 months and the trout survive just fine.

I guess at this point I am wondering if having a trout pond is feasible or will I lose them all during winter. Is there a way to "automate" a care system? Do I need a care system?

What do you think about the feasibility in general? Waste of time?

I would love to hear your thoughts! The good and the bad!!

Thanks so much,

Al

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#490156 - 05/16/18 11:55 AM Re: Building trout pond in Alaska? [Re: Arctic Al]
liquidsquid Offline


Registered: 11/20/11
Posts: 1941
Loc: East Bloomfield, NY USA
I would think it is very feasible, as long as the pond was dug deep enough to have a reservoir of O2 during the frozen times (10-15ft?). Even better is if you managed to find a means to bring in O2-water like a small stream to keep the O2 replenished. You could also aerate to assure there is O2, but you will have to be careful on the coldest days to not super-cool the water and perhaps shut it off when too cold.

I wouldn't worry about failure too much, as if you experience a fish kill, you can always replenish the next season. You will want to always have fish though, if only to keep the skeeters down.
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