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Area Sport Fishing Reports
June 17, 2016
The king salmon fishery is well into the season now. The majority of transboundary Stikine River king salmon have entered the river by this time although other alaska wild stocks, non-alaska stocks, and returning hatchery produced king salmon contribute to the king salmon catches in the area.
Inseason estimates of king salmon returning to the Stikine River are falling short of the preseason forecast. In light of this the department has removed regulations which allowed increased opportunity for king salmon in district 8 (waters surrounding the mouth of the Stikine River) effective June 2, 2016. The Southeast regional king salmon regulations announced on April 11, 2016 are now in effect in all marine waters in the Petersburg/Wrangell area except within the Wrangell Narrows/Blind Slough terminal area where regulations provide for additional sport fishing opportunity targeting king salmon returning to Crystal Lake hatchery. Please see the link to emergency orders at the bottom of this page for detailed information including bag and possession limits.
King salmon returning to Blind Slough are arriving in the freshwaters and are present in the terminal area of Wrangell Narrows. Early indications of the return strength suggest an abundance level that is in line with the fairly stong preseason forecast, angler reports on the fishing grounds have been mixed but catch rates are increasing. Expect king salmon numbers in the area to continue to increase throughout June and into July as these fish return to the Crystal Lake Hatchery. Anglers are reminded that special regulations apply for the Blind Slough/Wrangell Narrows terminal area. In addition to the news releases available in the link at the bottom of this page, signage has also been posted at the entrance to Blind River Rapids and at harbor signboards. Please check these regulations often as inseason action is sometimes nescesary to manage this king salmon fishery.
The early summer run coho have started to arrive to Northern Prince of Wales island and coho are begining to be caught in the marine fishery especially in the vicinity of Northern Prince of Wales. It is still early for the marine coho fishery and anglers can expect to see coho begin to arrive in quantity begining in the first week of July with catch rates typically increasing into early August.
Dolly Varden, Rainbow trout and Cuthroat trout
There are several great locations for fishing trout and Dolly Varden both on and off the road system in the Petersburg/Wrangell area. With the warming freshwater temperatures anglers often find these fish active and aggressive. Dolly Varden can also be an exciting catch in the nearshore marine waters as they cruise the coastline feeding on juvenile salmon and other fish species. When fishing for trout be sure to check the "2016 Southeast Alaska Sport Fish Regulation Summary"(available anywhere licenses are sold or on the ADF&G website) to understand regulations for the waterbody you intend to fish. Regulations regarding size limits, bag limits and the use of bait can vary by waterbody.
Halibut are currently being caught in local waters. Halibut catch rates typically increase throughout the summer as these fish migrate into the area and then remain stable throughout the early fall.