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Alaska Department of Fish and Game

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Area Sport Fishing Reports

May 24, 2016

Anchorage Area

Week of May 23 to May 31

General Area Description: All waters draining into the east side of Knik arm south of, and including, the Eklutna River drainage, and all waters draining into the north and west sides of Turnagain Arm, and all waters draining into the south side of Turnagain Arm east of, and including, Ingram Creek.

Regulation Reminders

  • Ship Creek is closed to fishing from the Chugach Power Plant Dam upstream to Reeves Boulevard April 15 – June 14.
  • Campbell Creek (entire drainage) is closed to fishing April 15 – June 14.
  • Chester Creek (entire drainage) is closed to fishing April 15 – June 14.
  • Bird Creek (entire drainage) is closed to fishing January 1 – July 13.
  • Symphony Lake is closed to fishing May 1 – June 30.

Fishing Tip: Before you go fishing ALWAYS review the sport fishing regulations.

For additional information about regulations in the Anchorage Bowl look in the 2016 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulation Summary.

Sport fishing licenses and King Stamps are available for purchase online at the ADF&G Online Store. Personal Use Dipnet and Shrimp Permits can be obtained online as well.

Stream Fishing


  • Ship Creek is the only stream in the Anchorage area currently open to king salmon fishing. Fishing on Ship Creek is open from 6am to 11pm from the mouth up to the cable crossing roughly 100 feet below the Chugach Power Plant dam.
  • Several Catches of king salmon on Ship Creek were reported over the weekend.. Those that have had success reported to be fishing the incoming (flood) tide into slack high tide. Most fish have been taken with spin’n’glows and roe, but those casting large spinners have caught their fair share of fish as well. Try fishing from anywhere just below the last bridge to the pedestrian bridge. Fishing is expected to be fair this week and into the holiday weekend.
  • All other waters in the Anchorage Management Area are currently closed to king salmon fishing.
  • If you are successful and would like to report a catch please contact the Sport Fish Information Center at 267-2218.


  • All of Campbell Creek, Chester Creek, and portions of Ship Creek remains closed to all fishing to protect spawning rainbow trout.

Lake Fishing

  • At this point in time the William Jack Hernandez Sportfish Hatchery has stocked most Anchorage and surrounding area lakes. Check the Stocking Update when planning a trip to the local lakes.
  • The fish that were stocked a few weeks ago have begun to spread out in the lakes, but the recently stocked fish should remain in large schools for a while; consider this when selecting a lake to fish in Anchorage.
  • With the warm, summer-like weather we have been experiencing over the last few days, focus efforts early in the morning or late in the evening, as fish tend to hunker down deep when the sun is high. Try casting small lures or streamers to attract aggressive fish. Good catch rates have been reported for those that fish bait (e.g.- eggs) under a bobber.
  • In town, action has been reported to be good on Cheney and Campbell Point lakes in the late afternoon; anglers have witnessed lots of trout surface feeding on hatching insects, so make sure to bring a box of dry flies. For those looking to get out of town, try the Chugiak area lakes (Mirror, Edmunds, and Beach). Access to a canoe or small boat can increase success significantly on the Chugiak area lakes.
  • APU/University Lake & West Chester Lagoon:
  • APU/University Lake as well as West Chester Lagoon are part of the Chester Creek Drainage and are currently closed thru June 14 to protect wild spawning rainbow trout.

Fishing Tip: To improve your success in local stocked lakes review the lake bathymetric (Bottom depth profile) map as well as recent stocking data online. This will help you determine what type of fish you are fishing for and where they might be. Often a little walk or getting away from the pack will provide rewards.

Northern Pike

  • There are very few opportunities for Northern Pike in Anchorage as they are not native to the region. ADF&G has taken steps to keep Pike out of Anchorage lakes.
  • Lower Fire Lake is the closest place to find Northern Pike in the Anchorage Area.
  • Pike are fun to fly fish for using frog, mouse and duckling patterns.
  • Casting or trolling spinners and small plugs are successful techniques for catching pike on Lower Fire Lake.
  • Very late in the evening can be an excellent time to target these predatory fish.
  • Please respect private property and quiet hours around Lower Fire Lake. Using a boat will increase your success rate substantially.


  • Open season for hooligan (smelt) in salt waters is April 1–May 31; in fresh waters, it is April 1–June 15. There is no bag or possession limit for personal use smelt. Hooligan may be taken by dip net in any fresh or salt water during this time period.
  • This is a personal-use fishery and only Alaska residents can participate. No permit is required, but you do need an Alaska resident fishing license or ADF&G Permanent ID card with you.

20 Mile River:

  • Hooligan are still being caught in good numbers in the 20 Mile River throughout the tide cycle. Continue to fish two hours before and two hours after high tide, as these are when hooligan are most concentrated near the banks. As a reminder, dipnetting for hooligan in Saltwater closes June 1.
  • For your safety, and for the safety of others, please park well off the highway and be mindful of construction zones. Do not trespass on the railroad tracks or the railroad right-of-way. Please be respectful and take all your trash with you, don’t throw it on the ground.
  • For more information on hooligan dipnetting and hooligan dipnetting regulations, see Page 14 of the 2016 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations summary booklets.


Anchorage Area Archives for:
May 24, 2016 May 18, 2016 May 10, 2016