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Alaska Department of Fish and Game


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Area Sport Fishing Reports
Prince William Sound

September 10, 2015

Regulation Reminders and Emergency Orders

  • Effective Wednesday July 29, 2015 at 12:01 a.m. through the remainder of the season, daily bag limits for pink salmon in the Port of Valdez marine waters are 12 fish with 24 in possession. See news release at: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/sf/EONR/index.cfm?ADFG=region.NR&NRID=2152  *** this emergency order does not increase any bag or possession limits for any other species…
  • Shrimp permits are mandatory for all noncommercial fishermen. Permits are available at local Fish and Game offices and at select vendors. The sport/subsistence/personal use shrimp fishery closes on September 15. Only one week left!
  • No snagging in the Whittier Small Boat Harbor.
  • Ibeck Creek is closed to all sport fishing upstream from a point 3 miles above the Copper River Highway.
  • CORDOVA STREAMS crossing the Copper River Highway from Eyak River to the Million Dollar Bridge: Once you reach your daily limit of coho salmon (3 fish), you may not fish with bait in any of these streams for the remainder of the day.
  • Eyak and Robe Lakes are closed to all salmon fishing.

Fresh waters

Salmon

  • Late run Sockeye like Eshamy/Gunboat/Shotgun and other creeks are showing up at the mouths, but not in very good numbers… remember, no snagging in freshwater. Look for salt/fresh water boundary markers in lagoons and at the heads of bays… Just because the water tastes salty, doesn’t mean you can fish under salt water regulations.
  • Silvers are showing up in Cordova streams. The Eyak is picking up and fishermen are doing well for silvers. Silver fishing in the Ibeck River has been picking up. Fishermen at the Ibeck intersect the highway are doing well early in the morning or late in the evening. Other Fishermen on the Ibeck are doing well with terminal tackle (spinners) and bait. Many fishermen on the Ibeck are having better success if they walk downstream. Alaganik is clearing up, and getting fishier for sure.
  • Fleming Spit in Cordova is getting a huge run of pink salmon this year (as are many other streams throughout the sound) this might make silver fishing in some freshwater streams a little more difficult, and a little … Silvers haven’t made it back in great numbers yet, but should be showing up any day now.
  • Update (Friday, the 11th): Streams in the Cordova area, including Eyak and Ibeck rivers have become very turbid (cloudy) with the recent heavy rains. This dramatic rise in water level has made river fishing for silvers more difficult. Anglers are improving their success by using bait or bright colored lures. If fishermen are looking for alternative ways to find silver salmon while in the Cordova area, they should look to fishing in the salt water.

Trout, Dolly Varden, Grayling

  • Dolly Varden are present in many of the streams throughout Prince William Sound and the Copper River Delta. Use fry/smolt imitation flies or small spinners at lake outlets or stream confluences.
  • Cutthroat and rainbow/steelhead trout fishing opened Monday June 15. Small spinners, smolt patterns, and flies matching a hatch are your best bet.
  • Anglers reminded to check the Prince William Sound regulations on the legal size limit for retained trout.

Salt waters

Halibut, Lingcod, and Rockfish

  • Halibut fishing in the sound has slowed down, but they can still be found. If weather allows, the ocean entrances are always great places to catch halibut. Lone and Perry island have been good bets this year. Fishing just off the bottom can decrease the bycatch of rockfish and does not hurt your chances of catching halibut. Give it a try if your arms are getting tired of reeling up and deep water releasing rockfish.
  • What’s deepwater release? (these devices can turn the chance of survival for a rockfish from near zero to near 100%!)  http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=fishingSportFishingInfo.rockfishconservation  
  • AND REMEMBER if you are targeting multiple species, target rockfish last
  • Rockfish targeted angling is quite productive with small jigs near rocky reefs.
  • Lingcod season fishing has been slow. Targeting rocky pinnacles with jigs and anything else that can get their attention is your best bet.

Salmon

  • Silvers showed up early and strong this year, and are still being caught in good numbers mooching and trolling throughout the sound. This rain we just got throughout the sound should be moving the silvers up into freshwater soon.
  • Whittier Harbor is seeing a good number of silvers returning and there are still some kings mulling around… herring or eggs under a bobber or mooched works great… other than that, flashy spinners and spoons work great too… Remember, NO SNAGGING in the Whittier small boat harbor.
  • Herring fishing has been pretty good from shore as well in Whittier.
  • Pink salmon should be slowing down in Valdez in and the fish quality is going down… if you do find some pinks in good shape, ADF&G has issued an emergency order liberalizing bag and possession limits. Effective Wednesday July 29, 2015, daily bag limits for pink salmon in the Port of Valdez marine waters are 12 fish with 24 in possession. See news release at: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/sf/EONR/index.cfm?ADFG=region.NR&NRID=2152  
  • Silvers out of Valdez are slowly moving in closer to shore, if you spend some time picking through pinks or get out past them in a boat, you can expect better silver catches.
  • Fishing Tip: It has been a long winter. Brush up on your fish identification before you head out fishing. Test your knowledge with the new Pacific Salmon ID quiz.

Shellfish

  • Shrimping continues to be productive near Whittier and Valdez, but it’s generally better and better the farther you get away from ports. Start moving those pots out a little deeper as the summer moves on. Once you figure out the depth they are at, start setting parallel sets at that depth and your pots will look a lot better coming up.
  • Don’t forget your shrimp permit – everyone needs one.

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