(Released: July 25, 2017 - Expired: July 31, 2017)
Division of Sport Fish
Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Contact: Sam Ivey, Area Management Biologist
(Palmer) - The Fish Creek Personal Use Dipnet Fishery will open at 6:00 a.m. Wednesday, July 26, 2017, and close at 11:00 p.m. Monday, July 31, 2017. Dipnetting for salmon will be allowed only between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. each day.
All salmon species, except king salmon, may be retained. Any king salmon caught must be released immediately. The area open to dipnetting is from ADF&G regulatory markers located on both sides of the terminus of Fish Creek, upstream to ADF&G regulatory markers located approximately one-quarter mile upstream from Knik-Goose Bay Road. Dipnetting is allowed from a boat or from the shore.
The escapement goal for Fish Creek sockeye salmon is 15,000 - 45,000 fish as measured at a weir located upstream of the fishery. As of July 23, 2017, more than 16,770 sockeye salmon have passed through the Fish Creek weir. Based on these weir counts, the department is projecting a total escapement of more than 35,000 sockeye salmon. Therefore, it is justified to allow a personal use dip net fishery for salmon on Fish Creek.
A 2017 Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use permit is required to dipnet salmon at Fish Creek and only Alaska residents holding valid sport fishing licenses, or ADF&G Permanent Identification Cards (senior license), or ADF&G Disabled Veteran's licenses may participate in this fishery. The Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use permit is the same permit used in the Kenai and Kasilof dip net fisheries.
Permits can be obtained online on the ADF&G web site. Some vendors are running low on the Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use permits and it is recommended that dipnetters get their permits online. Dipnetters can also report their harvest online.
Participants are allowed to harvest up to 25 salmon per head of household with 10 additional fish for each household member. Only one Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use permit is allowed per household and permits will not be reissued for a household that has already returned its permit to ADF&G. Participants must carry their permits while dipnetting, clip off both tips of the tail fin of every fish harvested, and record their harvest on their dip net permit before concealing the salmon from view or transporting the salmon from the fishing site.
The department reminds dipnetters to please stay off private property. The majority of property adjacent to Fish Creek downstream of the Knik-Goose Bay Road Bridge is privately owned. Dipnetters trespassing across private property may be subject to a fine. Respect “no trespassing” signs. Permission to use private uplands for any reason must be obtained from the land owner. When accessing the mouth of the Fish Creek, legal access is restricted to below the mean high tide line. Remember, all-terrain vehicles (four-wheelers) are not allowed in creeks or adjacent creekside property without a habitat permit.
For more information, contact the Palmer Area Office at (907) 746-6300.