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Area Sport Fishing Reports

November 20, 2018

Early Winter Fishing Report

Regulation Reminders

  • Don’t forget your 2018 sport fishing license expires December 31, 2018.
    • 2019 sport fishing licenses can be purchased online or from a license vendor.
    • A sport fishing license makes a great gift and one that lasts all year. Buy them a season of memories this Christmas.
  • Ice thickness fluctuates greatly across the Mat-Su area. Use extreme caution when fishing early in the season, especially on bigger lakes with open leads and realize many lakes in the valley have springs keeping ice thin.
    • Anglers are reminded that ADF&G DOES NOT monitor ice thickness.
  • The 2018 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet is effective until the 2019 booklet is issued, which is expected to be in mid-February. Be sure to review the regulations for the Northern Cook Inlet Area before heading out on your next fishing trip.

Freshwater Fishing

Lake Fishing

  • Like many other fish, salmon are visual predators. They use their sense of smell and sight to find food. Fishing right now tends to be most productive during daylight hours. During these short days, try extending your fishing day by using glow-in-the-dark lures, in addition to bait (where legal).
  • Fishing stocked lakes has been very rewarding for anglers venturing out early this winter season.
  • Lakes recently stocked with big brood Arctic char include Long (mile 86 Glenn Highway), Seventeenmile, and Matanuska lakes.
  • Lakes stocked with catchable Chinook salmon include Finger, Knik, and Memory. These are good lakes to take little kids as Chinook are aggressive feeders and will capture kids’ attention and provide success in little time. Use tiny pieces of bait and bobbers for the kids to watch.
  • Lakes stocked in late-August with big broodstock rainbow trout are Long (mile 86 Glenn Highway), Kepler/Bradley, and Loberg lakes.
  • A small hike into Victor and Klaire lakes on the Matanuska Lakes trail system provides a quiet and highly productive fishery for coho salmon. It has been a well-kept secret; until now.
  • With the lack of snow cover a 4-wheel ride to Wishbone or Ruby lakes would be enjoyable.
  • If you want to fish for giant rainbows, give Seymour Lake a try. Catch rates are a bit slow but the rewards are great.
  • If you find yourself in the Talkeetna area, South Friend Lake fishes great in the summer for rainbow trout. It’s right off the Parks Highway and would be worth drilling a few holes.
  • The following local lakes are easily accessible and are great lakes to take kids out ice fishing:
    • Finger Lake offers a wide variety of fish and produces high catch rates. Use caution, this one takes a while to freeze all the way over.
    • Knik Lake was recently stocked with landlocked Chinook salmon.
    • Loberg Lake offers coho salmon and big rainbow trout.
    • Long Lake (mile 86 Glenn Highway) offers a variety of fish species including broodstock Arctic char and rainbow trout.

Northern Pike

  • Those anglers looking for road-accessible pike fishing should give Anderson, King, Memory, Prator, and Knik lakes a try. Ice skates and tip-ups are a fun combo for spending the day outside. Keep your lines closely attended and follow pike fishing regulations. If you have any questions, call the ADF&G Palmer office at 746-6300.
  • New bathymetric maps have been developed for Memory, Prator, and Knik lakes providing great depth and structure details. Check them out on the ADF&G Alaska Lake Database webpage.


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