Area Sport Fishing Reports

Archived Sport Fishing Report

August 30, 2023

Fall Fishing Report 2023

Local Lakes

  • With the cooler temperatures of fall approaching, Mat-Su Valley lakes provide excellent fishing as fish become much more active, and feed in shallower water.
  • Lake trout are stocked in Matanuska and Long Lake (mile 86).
  • In the Palmer/Wasilla area, Lorraine, Carpenter, Knik, Lucille, Kepler, Rocky, and Echo lakes are stocked with rainbow trout.
  • Lakes stocked with landlocked salmon are Matanuska, Finger, Beverly, Loberg and Klaire.
  • Arctic Char are stocked in Finger, Irene, Long, Lynne, Marion, Matanuska, Prator, and Seventeenmile lakes.
  • Along the Glenn Highway northeast of Palmer, Seventeenmile, Slipper, Long, Ravine, Weiner, Knob and North Knob lakes all have rainbow trout.
  • Wishbone Lake, X Lake, and Long Lake (Matanuska Lakes Complex) have special catch and release, single-hook restrictions and close to all fishing November 1st-April 30th.

Freshwater Fishing


  • Please see the emergency order section below for streams that have been closed to fishing for coho salmon.
  • Eklutna Tailrace is a stocked fishery for coho salmon. Fishing is open 7 days a week and bait and multiple hooks are allowed. Bag limits are 3 per day/ 3 in possession. Coho fishing is slow.
  • Fish Creek is a weekend-only fishery from 5am-10pm, fishing for coho has been slow.
  • The Susitna River, Little Susitna, Deshka, and Talkeetna streams are all experiencing flooding. More rain is in the forecast and rivers are expected to stay high for a while. Use caution navigating these waters as there is a lot of debris.
  • Wasilla Creek (Rabbit Slough) is a weekend only fishery, from 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., where some late season coho may be found.

Northern Pike

  • Fishing is best when water temperatures are lowest, such as early in the morning or late in the day.
  • For road-accessible pike fishing, try just about any lake in the Nancy Lake canoe system, plus Memory, Prator, and Big Lakes.
  • Fly-in fishing for pike can be excellent. Try Alexander or Trapper Lakes.

Rainbow Trout

  • Flesh flies, and cotton candy will be good as fall fast approaches and rainbows search for flesh. Don’t rule out a strike indicator, they can be very helpful with hook sets.
  • Rainbow trout fishing should be good to excellent well into freeze up. Look for trout with the spawning coho during the last two weeks in September. When the waters do drop, target trout in deeper holes and near or below the mouths of streams draining into the Susitna. Flesh flies, beads, and sculpin patterns work well in late fall.

Emergency Orders

Please review the emergency orders and advisory announcements below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip.

  • Emergency Order 2-SS-2-60-23 closes the Deshka River to retention of coho salmon and continues to restrict the bag limit for coho salmon to one fish in all other waters of the Susitna River drainage. Bait is prohibited and only artificial lures are allowed.
  • Emergency Order 2-SS-2-62-23 closes the Little Susitna River to the retention of coho salmon beginning Saturday, August 19 through Saturday, September 30, 2023. Bait continues to be prohibited under this emergency order. Coho salmon may not be targeted and must be immediately released if incidentally caught while fishing for other salmon.
  • Emergency Order 2-SS-2-63-23 closes Jim Creek to all salmon fishing beginning Saturday, August 19.
  • Emergency Order 2-R-2-02-23 adds Leech, Summit, Zero, Kings, and Anderson lakes to the list of lakes stocked with hatchery fish. The bag and possession limit for rainbow trout in these lakes is five fish, of which only one maybe 20 inches or greater in length. The bag and possession limit for Arctic grayling is five fish, with no size limit. This emergency order is effective for the 2023 season.
  • Emergency Order 2-DV-2-01-23 prohibits the retention of Arctic char/Dolly Varden in the Fish Creek (Big Lake) drainage. This emergency order is in effect through 11:59 p.m. Sunday, December 31, 2023.

Don’t forget to purchase your 2023 sport fishing license and king stamp! These can be purchased through the ADF&G online store and printed off from the comfort of your own home. Also, make sure to review emergency orders, advisory announcements, and the 2023 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for the area you are fishing in before you head out.

For additional information, please contact the ADF&G Palmer Area Office at (907) 746-6300.


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