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Area Sport Fishing Reports
June 19, 2017
King salmon catch rates have been below average thus far in the 2017 season. The number of king salmon returning to the Stikine River at this time indicates that the abundance of Stikine river king salmon will not meet preseason expectations. Due to this new inseason information, new king salmon regulations have been issued for the Petersburg/Wrangell area effective May 25, 2017. The area immediately adjacent to the mouth of the Stikine River has been closed to king salmon fishing and reduced bag and possession limits continue to apply in the remainder of district 8 until July 15th. Please see the link for “emergency orders” at the bottom of this page for details and a map of district 8. News releases with this information have also been posted near the entrance to harbors and boat launches.
Crystal Lake Hatchery is expected to have a fair return of king salmon in the 2017 season and these fish are now returning to the local waters. Inseason catch reates have been good and king salmon are now regularly being caught in the freshwaters of Blind Slough. Bag and possession limits for king salmon in the Wrangell Narrows/Blind Slough Terminal harvest area have been established as 2 king salmon 28" or greater in length and 2 king salmon under 28" in length. The nonresident annual limit does not apply to king salmon harvested within the Wrangell Narrows/Blind Slough Terminal area. Please see the link to emergency orders at the bottom of this page for additional details and a map of the terminal area. Anglers can expect catch rates to increase through June as more Crystal Lake hatchery king salmon arrive in the terminal area.
For all other marine waters within the Petersburg/Wrangell management area (outside of district 8 and the Wrangell Narrows terminal area mentioned above). The regional king salmon regulations continue to apply:
- Resident anglers: bag and possession limit of 2 king salmon, 28" or greater in length.
- Nonresident anglers: bag and possession limit of 1 king salmon, 28" or greater in length. Annual limit of 3 king salmon, 28" or greater in length which must be recorded on the back of your sport fishing license or harvest record card immediately after landing.
Early summer run coho have started to return to local waters, especially Sumner Strait near Northern Prince of Wales Island. It is still early for the marine coho fishery and anglers can expect to see coho arrive in quantity beginning in the first week of July with catch rates typically increasing into early August. For most systems in the area, opportunity for freshwater fishing for coho will start in mid-August and continue through October.
Dolly Varden, Rainbow trout and Cutthroat trout
There are several great locations for fishing trout and Dolly Varden both on and off the road system in the Petersburg/Wrangell area. With the warming freshwater temperatures anglers often find these fish active and aggressive. Dolly Varden can also be an exciting catch in the nearshore marine waters. When fishing for trout be sure to check the "2017 Southeast Alaska Sport Fish Regulation Summary"(available anywhere licenses are sold or on the website) to understand regulations for the waterbody you intend to fish. Regulations regarding size limits, bag limits and the use of bait can vary by waterbody.
Halibut are currently being caught in local waters. Halibut catch rates typically increase throughout the summer as these fish migrate into the area and remain stable throughout the early fall.