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Area Sport Fishing Reports
August 20, 2015
Hatchery King Salmon Regulations in the Juneau Terminal Harvest Area (THA)
Liberalized regulations for hatchery king salmon in the Juneau THA are still in effect. For anglers fishing within the Auke Bay/Fritz Cove to Juneau-Douglas Bridge area, the following regulations still apply through Saturday, August 31st:
- The daily bag and possession limit is four king salmon of any size;
- King salmon harvested by nonresidents in the designated terminal harvest area and time period do not count toward the regionwide annual limit.
Freshwater drainages crossed by the Juneau Road System that are open to sport fishing are now open year-round to king salmon fishing with a bag and possession limit of 4 fish of any size. King salmon caught by nonresidents in these drainages do not count toward their annual limit. In addition, liberalized methods and means are in effect for Fish Creek Pond from June 1- August 31. Please consult the 2015 Southeast Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary Booklet for these regulations.
Regional Regulations for Southeast Marine Waters - outside of THA
Beyond the THA boundaries described above, anglers are notified that the Southeast regionwide regulations that allowed Alaska residents a bag and possession limit of three king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length and nonresident annual limits of 6 king salmon changed July 1, 2015 to the following:
Effective from 12:01 a.m. Wednesday July 1, 2015 through 11:59 p.m. Monday, May 2, 2016:
- The resident bag and possession limit is two king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length. There is no annual limit.
- The nonresident bag and possession limit is one king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length,
- The nonresident annual limit is now three king salmon 28 inches or greater in length.
From October 1, 2015 through March 31, 2016; resident sport anglers may use two rods when fishing for king salmon.
Salmon Fishing Report for Juneau Area
Fishing for feeder kings dropped off in the week just prior to the three-day Golden North Salmon Derby. Numbers of king salmon turned in during the Derby were below the 5-year average, with most coming from west of Point Retreat, backside of Douglas, and south of Douglas island. Compared to the previous week's catches, reported king salmon catch rates were still low for marine boat anglers returning to Elfin Cove and Gustavus, but catches of cohos improved significantly. Coho fishing on the backside of Douglas also continued to be consistent last week, with good fishing for cohos and pinks north and south of Shelter island, west of Pt. Retreat to Cordwood, Funter Bay, Auke Bay and Outer Point. Pink salmon continued to be very abundant west of Pt Retreat, around Shelter Island, and on the backside of Douglas Island. A few sockeye was also caught west of Pt Retreat this past weekend and turned into the Derby station in Auke Bay. About 3050 coho salmon were turned in during the Golden North Salmon Derby for Scholarship fish, which is above the 5-year average and in line with the stronger odd-year production seen in recent years. Anglers are reminded to please turn in any coho or king salmon heads from fish missing an adipose fin. These fish have valuable data embedded in Coded-Wire-Tags in their noses that provide infomation about stream origin.
Coho salmon continue to return to area streams. However, large numbers of pinks and chums are still present making catching cohos in freshwater more difficult. Chums were reported in large numbers in the nearshore coastal streams, with high numbers still being reported in areas around Gastineau Channel, especially DIPAC/Wayside Park, Auke Bay and the mouth of Sheep Creek. Pink salmon in large numbers have also been reported from Cowee creek, out the road. Anglers are reminded to check the 2015 Southeast Alaska Sport Fishing Regulation Summary booklet for Juneau area streams along the road system that are closed to salmon fishing including: Auke Lake drainage, Jordan Creek, Kowee Creek (on Douglas), Sheep (above the bridge), Steep, Switzer, Vanderbilt, Waydelich(Wadleigh), and Windfall Creeks (except in June).
Halibut, Lingcod, Sablefish (blackcod), and Rockfish
Anglers continued to catch halibut throughout the Juneau area with the best catches reported from north Shelter, Lincoln Island, Halibut Cove areas, the reefs in the Benjamin island to Echo Cove area, St James Bay, and west of Pt Retreat. Catches were also reported from Marmion Island, Lynn Sisters, Barlow Cove, Pt Couverden, and Tracy Arm. Species of rockfish caught this week included Quillback, Dusky, Black, Yelloweye, Silvergrey, Redstripe, and Shortraker. A few lingcod were also caught in St James Bay and north Shelter Island.
Anglers are reminded that all non-pelagic rockfish caught (i.e.- anything other than Dark, Dusky, Widow, Black, Blue and Yellowtail) must be retained until their bag limit is reached. Please consult the 2015 Southeast Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations to identify pelagic and non-pelagic rockfish (page 36) and for daily bag and possession limits (page 11). Also, in northern Southeast waters residents may keep 1 lingcod daily with 2 in possession, no size limits. Nonresidents may keep 1 lingcod daily with 1 in possession, annual limit of 2. Lingcod size limits are 30-35 inches, or 55 inches or greater. Nonresidents must record all lingcod harvested on the back of their sport fish license or on a harvest record. Anglers may catch 4 blackcod daily and have 4 in possession, no size restrictions. Nonresidents may only keep 8 blackcod annually, which must be recorded on their harvest record.
Dolly Varden char, Rainbow and Cutthroat Trout fishing
With the return of the salmon, fishing for trout and char continued to be good in local streams along the Juneau road system. Anglers should have the best luck using bright orange lures, beads or egg pattern flies over the next month or so. Good spots to try your luck include: Sheep, Salmon, Montana, Peterson and Cowee Creeks. Anglers should consult the 2015 Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations for trout and Dolly Varden regulations. Juneau area Freshwater Special Regulations for local lakes and drainages can be found on pages 18-21. Unless otherwise specified, cutthroat and rainbow trout limits (in combination) on the Juneau Road System are 2 daily and 2 in possession, 14 inch minimum and 22 inch maximum. Dolly Varden limits are 2 daily and 2 in possession, no size limit.