Area Sport Fishing Reports
Prince of Wales Island
July 1, 2020
Sport fishing opportunities on Prince of Wales (POW) during July include marine waters surrounding the island and a vast road system that provides access to a large number of rivers, creeks and lakes, which provide opportunities for sockeye and summer run coho salmon, Dolly Varden, cutthroat and rainbow trout. Fishing in marine waters during July is good for bottom fish and king, coho and pink salmon.
An excellent resource for planning a trip is the gofishak interactive map for POW which provides information on fishing locations, species run timing, fishing gear and angler access.
* Just a reminder to all our anglers, please do your part to help slow the spread of Covid-19 by following and reviewing the current State of Alaska Health Mandates in effect. This includes practicing social distancing while sport and personal use fishing and wearing a face covering when fishing and if you are needing fishing supplies from your local store as indicated in Health Alert 010.
Chinook (king) salmon are present in the marine water of POW and fishing has been good near Craig and Klawock and very good in the outside waters at Noyes, Baker and Suemez islands. The harvest of king salmon is open on the east side of POW and fishing is fair.
- Sport fishing for king salmon is open for resident anglers with a daily bag and possession limit of three fish over 28 inches.
- The daily bag limit for nonresident anglers is one fish over 28 inches and an annual limit of four fish.
- Immediately upon landing and retaining a king salmon a nonresident must enter the species, date and location, in ink, on the back of their sport fishing license or on a nontransferable harvest record.
Sockeye (red) salmon have started entering some freshwater drainages. Draiages with sockeye salmon include Sweetwater, Sarkar and Karta river drainages.
Small numbers of coho (silver) salmon are showing up in the marine waters of POW. Summer run hatchery coho salmon from Neck Lake are starting to show at Whale Pass, although numbers are down so far.
Pink salmon are showing up in the marine catch, most notably on the east side of POW where good catches have been reported.
Trout and Dolly Varden
Rainbow trout, cutthroat trout and Dolly Varden are available in many of the freshwater drainages of POW and fishing can be very good in July. They can be caught on a variety of lures and fly patterns. Productive drainages include: Klawock, Luck and Sarkar lakes; the Thorne River and Ratz Creek. Regulations regarding size limits, bag limits and the use of bait can vary by waterbody, so please check the Southeast Alaska Sport Fish Regulation Summary.
Halibut catches have been good in the marine waters surrounding POW.
Lingcod fishing is good around rocky structure.
A helpful flier is available on the Fish and Game website for identifying common rockfish of POW.
As of January 1, 2020 all sport fishing vessels are required to have at least one functional deep water release device (regardless of species targeted) and anglers will be REQUIRED to use a deep water release device to release rockfish to the depth it was hooked or to a depth of at least 100 feet. Please see the Southeast Alaska Sport Fish Regulation Summary or visit your local ADF&G office to see examples of rockfish release devices and learn about their use.
Demersal Shelf Rockfish
The retention of demersal shelf rockfish is prohibited during 2020.
- No retention of demersal shelf rockfish which are the following species: yelloweye, quillback, copper, canary, china, tiger and rosethorn rockfish.
Some slope rockfish are common in marine waters surrounding POW. The most common species are: silvergrey, rougheye, shortraker and vermilion rockfish.
- One per day; one in possession
Pelagic rockfish provide good fishing in the marine waters surrounding POW.
- Season: year round
- Five per day; ten in possession
For additional information regarding rockfish identification and management please refer to the rockfish conservation page on the ADF&G Sport Fish website.
For further information, please feel free to contact the Prince of Wales Area Management Biologist: Craig Schwanke (907) 826-2498.