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Alaska Department of Fish and Game

Area Sport Fishing Reports

May 20, 2015

Kodiak Area

Week of May 17 to May 23
Issued May 18, 2015

Emergency Orders and regulation reminders

• Effective June 1, in the Ayakulik River drainage, king salmon sport fishing is restricted to catch and release. All king salmon caught must be released without being removed from the water. In addition, bait is not allowed for any sport fishing and only single hooks on artificial lures may be used.
• Effective June 1, in the Karluk River drainage, including Karluk Lagoon, sport fishing for king salmon is closed. In addition, the use of bait is prohibited for all sport fishing downstream of Karluk Lake.
• Marine boat anglers returning to any port on the Kodiak road system from May 31 - August 31 may not fillet, mutilate, or de-head king salmon until they have been brought to shore and offloaded, unless the fish have been consumed or preserved on board.

Fresh waters


• Department of Fish and Game counting weirs on the Buskin, Afognak, Karluk, Ayakulik and Dog Salmon rivers will be installed between May 15 and May 22 to count returns of sockeye salmon. King salmon returns will also be counted at Karluk and Ayakulik weirs. Respective escapement goals for these two runs are 3,000 – 6,000 and 4,000-7,000 fish. The current Buskin River sockeye salmon escapement goal is 5,000-8,000 fish.
• In anticipation of relatively poor returns in 2015, sport fishing for king salmon Karluk River drainage (including Karluk Lagoon) is closed. In addition, the use of bait for all sport fishing is prohibited downstream of Karluk Lake.
• Poor returns are also expected this year for the Ayakulik River king salmon run. Consequently, king salmon sport fishing is restricted at to catch and release only. Bait is not allowed for any sport fishing and only single hooks on artificial lures may be used.
• Relatively healthy returns are anticipated for the Kodiak Road Zone’s Buskin River sockeye salmon run, which usually peaks during mid-June, and in the last 10 years has averaged about 15,000 fish. The daily bag and possession limit for sockeye salmon within the Kodiak Road Zone is two fish.
• After Kodiak salmon counting weirs begin operating anglers can find daily updated counts at .

Trout, Dolly Varden, Grayling

• Dolly Varden are beginning to leave their over-winter fresh waters. Recent fishing success has been reported on Buskin River at the outlet of Buskin Lake. Dollies are also often caught during early May at Buskin River above Bridge #6 at the “Beaver Pond”. By early June Dollies typically are also caught along beaches at Pillar and Monashka creeks and Mission Lake. By late June, Dolly Varden should be available in salt waters near most rivers along the Kodiak road system, the beaches of Roslyn and Myrtle creeks being two favorite locations for local anglers.

Lake Fishing

• May is an excellent time to fish rainbow trout in the stocked lakes along the Kodiak road zone, as during and shortly after ice-out the fish travel shoal areas in search of food. Visit lower elevation lakes for rainbow fishing, as fish will be more active in warmer waters. Although ADF&G currently stocks only sterile juvenile trout, some lakes with a stocking history dating to the 1950s may also contain spawning populations of adult fish. Rainbows typically spawn during the month of May, and anglers wishing to avoid catching these fish should target their efforts away from flowing waters into or out of the lakes.

Salt waters


• Halibut fishing reportedly has spotty so far this year, but fish sizes are substantially smaller than average. Fishing should get progressively better for the remainder of May and during June.


• Trolling for Chinook (king) salmon in Kodiak’s marine waters has become very popular in recent years. Kings can be fished successfully year-round, though fishing tends to be spotty and difficult to predict. Recent reports indicate that trolling has been excellent directly in front of Gibson Cove, at Buoy #4 and in front of the Woody Island dock in Chiniak Bay, and also in Kalsin Bay.
• The current near-shore abundance of herring can occasionally produce results for anglers fishing kings from local beaches. Shore fishing along the Kalsin Bay and Pasagshak River beaches is a good choice for this prospect.
• Other well-known trolling spots along the road system are Cape Chiniak, Cape Gravelle and waters between long and Woody islands. Kodiak king salmon average 20 pounds, but fish up to 70 pounds are occasionally caught.
• The annual Kodiak King Salmon Derby sponsored by the Kodiak Association of Charter Operators ( began on May 1.

Other salt water fishing

• Black rockfish can currently be caught at depths of 10 fathoms or less near kelp beds along rock pinnacles and other natural or man-made structures. Rockfish are also frequently caught from shore at locations such as the outer reaches of White Sand beach and the breakwater barrier shielding St. Paul Harbor.
• Anglers are reminded that the lingcod season does not open until July 1.


Kodiak Area Archives for:
May 20, 2015