Area Sport Fishing Reports
September 08, 2017
Week of September 8 to September 15
General Area Description: Salt waters within 200 miles of shore from the longitude of Gore Point to the longitude of Cape Fairfield. All fresh waters between Gore Point and Cape Fairfield.
Regulation Reminders and Emergency Orders
- The personal use season for shrimp fishing with pot gear in North Gulf Coast area waters closes September 15. A North Gulf Coast shrimp permit is required to participate in this fishery.
- The Resurrection River (fresh water area), downstream of the Seward Highway and Nash Road is currently open to salmon (except king salmon) fishing. Only unbaited, single-hook, artificial lures are allowed; snagging is not permitted in this freshwater portion of Resurrection River. Remember that in the fresh water section the bag limit is three per day, three in possession, of which only two may be coho (sliver) salmon. This is different from the salt water section where the bag limit for salmon (except king salmon) is six per day, six in possession and all six may be coho salmon.
- Halibut are federally managed by NOAA. Make sure you know the regulations! Unguided and guided anglers have different rules to follow.
- Halibut fishing in the North Gulf Coast continues to be good this year. Early fall can be a great time to target halibut inside Resurrection Bay as the fish are feasting on the large quantity of post-spawn pink salmon carcasses. Try drop offs near creek mouths where pinks are known to spawn. Other notable hot spots to target halibut inside the bay are around Humpy Cove, Hive Island, and on flats near Cape Resurrection; these locations are best fished with large herring.
- Boat anglers have had great success trolling near Caines Head and all the way into town. Use a small to medium herring with a hoochie squid while trolling or slowly retrieve spoons when a large school of coho have been located.
- Shore-based anglers have been reporting decent catches from around the Seward area. In Seward, try the mouth of Falls Creek and near the Sea Life Center. For those hoping to get away from town and that are willing to do some hiking, the mouth of Spring creek and the shore south of Tonsina creek have been productive locations. Try casting heavy spoons to where jumping coho can be spotted.
- Although coho are being caught in the salt water many people are reporting the water clarity is poor from the freshwater systems having high water events related to recent rain events. A couple of sunny clear days are needed to dry out and as the freshwater system drop the salt water will most likely clear up making it easier to see fish again. When the water is clear the fish will be able to see the lures further and fishing should pick up. So watch the weather.
Other Salt Water Fishing
- Lingcod fishing is currently open. Reports continue to be mixed. Some anglers are having success while others can’t find any legal lingcod. Lingcod fishing is CLOSED year-round within Resurrection Bay. Check the 2017 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for location specifics, and size restrictions on lingcod.
- Pacific cod can be caught in Resurrection Bay right now, if you are looking for an alternative fish to target. Try fishing small pieces of herring near a sandy bottom.
- Rockfish are easy to catch and have a fairly conservative bag limit, so target your rockfish last.
- Use deepwater release methods to release incidentally caught rockfish! Never heard of deepwater release for rockfish??? For details, see the ADF&G Rockfish Conservation and Deepwater Release webpage.
Fishing Tip: Brush up on your rockfish identification before you head out fishing by reviewing page 90 of the 2017 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulation Summary booklet.
- There are currently no reports from the personal-use shrimp pot fishery. This fishery is now open in the entire North Gulf Coast area from Cape Fairfield to Gore Point. To participate in the fishery you must be an Alaska resident with a current sport fishing license or ADF&G Permanent ID card, and a North Gulf Coast shrimp pot fishery permit. Permits can be obtained at the Anchorage, Homer, or Soldotna ADF&G offices.
- Review page 83 of the 2017 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for regulations on this fishery, and page 82 for shrimp pot requirements.
- The Resurrection River, downstream of the Seward Highway and Nash Road is OPEN to salmon (except king salmon) fishing. This is considered the “fresh water section” and is the only fresh water section open to salmon fishing in the area. Remember: snagging is NOT allowed in the fresh water portion of Resurrection River. Water with the recent rain has made fishing slow.
- Coho counts at the Bear Creek weir have been low, with a few fish starting to show up just below the weir. Large schools of coho have been reported just outside the Resurrection River flats area. It is just a matter of time before these fish flood the river.
- Remember: a coho salmon 16 inches or longer that is removed from fresh water must be retained and becomes part of the bag limit of the person who originally hooked the fish. A person may not remove a coho salmon 16 inches or longer from the water before releasing it.
Rainbow Trout, Dolly Varden, Arctic Grayling
- Dolly Varden are making their fall migration into fresh waters. Try small lures or bright flies to catch dollies fresh from the ocean. Dolly Varden will also be feeding on salmon eggs, so don’t hesitate to try beads and flesh patterns in the creeks around Seward.
- Northern pike are not native to Southcentral Alaska. Please report the capture of any pike in unconfirmed waters to ADF&G. Do not release any pike you have caught.
- Anglers can visit the ADF&G Hatcheries and Stocking webpage for more information regarding when and where fish are stocked.
- Rainbow trout have been spotted in First Lake surface feeding. Try walking the shoreline to try and spot small schools of fish. Fishing in the mornings or evening will increase catch rates.