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Area Sport Fishing Reports
January 14, 2015
Winter fishing report
Char and Trout
Dolly Varden and cutthroat trout are wintering in deep waters of the Chilkat River, Chilkat Lake, Mosquito Lake, Chilkoot River, and Chilkoot Lake. Ice fishing can be productive, but beware of thin ice during this warmer than usual winter.
Bait is prohibited when fishing in Mosquito Lake or Chilkat Lake and their inlet and outlet streams. In Mosquito Lake and Chilkat Lake, the limits for cutthroat and rainbow trout (combined) are 2 per day, 2 in possession, 14 inch minimum and 22 inch maximum size limit. In other area waters, the length limit for cutthroat and rainbow trout is 11 inch minimum and 22 inch maximum. Use the Sport Fishing Regulations link for details and a map.
Now through March 31, all Southeast Alaska anglers may use 2 rods when fishing in salt water for king salmon.
Review of 2014 salmon runs
The Chilkat River king salmon run fell short of the escapement goal range in 2014, and the 2015 run is expected to be weak.
About 250,000 hatchery-reared smolt will be released in Pullen Pond (Skagway) in June 2015. ADF&G will attempt to collect adults for broodstock in August. Mature female king salmon failed to return to Pullen Creek in August 2014, so no broodstock was collected for a release in 2016.
The 2014 Chilkat Lake weir counts exceeded 70,000 sockeye salmon, which is the lower end of the escapement goal range (70,000 to 150,000 fish).
The 2014 Chilkoot River weir counts of 105,000 sockeye salmon exceeded the upper end of the escapement goal range (38,000 to 86,000 fish).
The 2014 Chilkoot River pink salmon run was about 40% of average. The 2014 Chilkat River pink salmon run was only 2% of average.
The 2015 southeast Alaska pink salmon forecast is for very strong runs. Pink salmon have a 2-year life cycle, with bigger runs returning to Lynn Canal in odd-numbered years.
Halibut catch rates will pick up in the summer, with early season fishing better south of the Chilkat Peninsula.
Coho (silver) salmon
Stream surveys produced a 2014 Chilkat River coho salmon escapement estimate of 132,000 fish, which is the 4th highest escapement since 1986 and well above the goal range of 30,000 to 70,000 fish.
|Jan 14, 2015|