Area Sport Fishing Reports
June 18, 2021
Sport Fishing for King Salmon around Juneau
For the June 7-13 sampling week, ADF&G Marine Creel samplers interviewing marine boat anglers in the Juneau area sampled about 100 king salmon, with most harvest coming from within the Juneau Hatchery Sport Harvest Area (HSHA). Shoreside anglers were observed at Picnic Cove and Lena Cove. Regulations for the Hatchery Sport Harvest Areas are more liberal with a bag and possession limit of FOUR king salmon of any size, and salmon harvested by nonresidents do not count towards their annual limits. The Hatchery Sport Harvest Area includes Lena Cove and the area north from the Juneau-Douglas bridge to Fritz Cove and Auke Bay, bounded by a line from Outer Point to the north of Portland Island to Pt Louisa.
Beginning June 15, anglers were provided additional opportunities to harvest king salmon outside of the Juneau Hatchery Sport Harvest Area (HSHA). However, please note below that the regulations outside of the Hatchery Area have just changed:
Anglers please note the following: As of June 21, outside of the Juneau Hatchery Sport Harvest Area, resident anglers can retain TWO king salmon and nonresidents can keep ONE king salmon per day, 28 inches or greater in length. Through June 30th, nonresidents have a total harvest limit of THREE kings, but from July 1-July 7, nonresidents have a total harvest limit of TWO kings. This harvest limit then goes down to ONE king for nonresidents after July 7. Any prior nonresident harvest of king salmon applies towards their total harvest limit, no matter when they are caught. For example, this means that if a nonresident angler catches 3 king salmon by June 30, he/she cannot harvest any additional king salmon for the rest of the year. Nonresidents must record their harvest on a harvest record card or on the back of their fishing license. These management measures are directed by the Southeast Alaska King Salmon Management Plan and are in place to meet requirements of the Pacific Salmon Treaty such that king salmon are managed conservatively for a total sport king salmon treaty harvest of 37,120 fish.
Sport Fishing Regulations for King Salmon in Hatchery Areas near Juneau
The hatchery-produced king salmon regulations for the designated saltwater hatchery sport harvest area (see map 1) will be in effect from 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, June 1 through 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, August 31, 2021. These new regulations are as follows:
- The daily bag and possession limit is FOUR king salmon of any size;
- King salmon harvested by nonresidents in the designated saltwater hatchery sport harvest area DO NOT COUNT toward their annual limit.
The department is liberalizing sport fishing regulations in the designated Hatchery Sport Harvest Area due to the number of returning hatchery-produced king salmon exceeding broodstock needs for the hatchery program. See map 1.
Map 1. Sport Fishing Regulations for the Hatchery Sport Harvest Areas near Juneau
Outside the Juneau Hatchery Areas: Southeast Regionwide King Salmon Sport Fishing Regulations
Near to Juneau: Marine waters near Juneau EXCEPT for Seymour Canal and upper Taku Inlet (see map 2)
(The northern portion of District 9, District 10, Sections 11-A, 11-B, 11-C, District 12, Portion of Section 13-C southeast of a line between Nismeni Pt. and a point on the Chichagof Island shoreline at 57°35.59' N. lat., 135°22.33' W. long., Sections 14-B and 14-C, and District 15 south of the latitude of Sherman Rock)
- The resident bag and possession limit is TWO king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length, residents do not have a total harvest limit;
- From October 1, 2021, through March 31, 2022, a sport angler may use two rods when fishing for king salmon, a person using two rods under this regulation may only retain salmon.
- The nonresident bag and possession limit is ONE king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length;
January 1 - June 30
- A nonresident's total harvest limit is THREE king salmon 28 inches or greater in length;
July 1 - July 7
- A nonresident's total harvest limit is TWO king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length, and any king salmon harvested by the nonresident from January 1 through June 30 will apply toward the two fish total harvest limit;
July 8 - December 31
- A nonresident's total harvest limit is ONE king salmon 28 inches or greater in length, and any king salmon harvested by the nonresident from January 1 through July 7 will apply toward the one fish total harvest limit;
- Immediately upon landing and retaining a king salmon a nonresident must enter the species, date, and location on the back of their sport fishing license or on a nontransferable harvest record
In the waters adjacent to the Taku River (ie-upper Taku Inlet)
(upper Taku Inlet north of a line from Point Bishop to Point Greely)
April 1 through June 30, 2021:
- NO RETENTION of king salmon. All king salmon caught must be released immediately.
In the waters adjacent to the King Salmon River (ie-Seymour Canal)
(Section 11-D, Seymour Canal north of 57° 37' N. latitude)
April 1 through June 30, 2021:
- CLOSED to king salmon fishing, all anglers may not target or retain king salmon.
Map 2. Sport Fishing Regulations for King Salmon in Saltwaters near Juneau
King Salmon in Fish Creek and Fish Creek Pond
Anglers are reminded that from June 1-August 31, the daily bag and possession limit for king salmon in the freshwaters of Fish Creek and Fish Creek Pond is 4 fish, any size and any king salmon harvested by non-residents do not count toward their annual limit. Please note that within Fish Creek Pond, anglers may use bait, may snag, and may use weighted hooks, lures, and treble hooks with a gap greater than ½ inch between the point and shank. However, anglers may NOT use bait, or snag, or snagging hooks in Fish Creek itself. Although the marine waters surrounding the mouth of Fish Creek fall under Hatchery Sport Harvest Area regulations, anglers cannot snag in saltwater at the mouth of Fish Creek within a 200-yard radius of the creek mouth. Snagging is allowed in salt waters outside of that 200-yard radius.
Sport Fishing for Bottomfish around the Juneau Area
Marine boat anglers fishing for halibut and rockfish around Juneau from June 7-13 fished from Benjamin Island to North Shelter west to Couverden, Homeshore, and as far away as Cape Cross and Cross Sound. Anglers fishing near Pt Howard to Couverden and N. Shelter to Lincoln Islands reported the highest harvests, but catches were reported for many areas near Juneau. Besides halibut and blackcod, Dusky rockfish and a few slope rockfish species including Redbanded, Rougheye, and Silvergrey were reported as harvested this past week. Please help our marine creel personnel collect their marine boat angler survey information so that ADF&G can continue to sustainably manage sport fish species in our marine waters.
Anglers are reminded that retention of the following demersal shelf rockfish species remains prohibited in 2021: Yelloweye, Quillback, Tiger, Copper, China, Canary, and Rosethorn. Resident and nonresident anglers can keep ONE slope rockfish, with no annual limit. Common slope species encountered in sport fishing include Redbanded, Rougheye, Shortraker, Silvergrey, and Vermilion. A helpful flyer is available on the Fish and Game website to assist with identification called Keep Don't Keep Rockfish. All marine boat anglers are reminded to have at least one functional deepwater release mechanism on board and readily available for use when saltwater sport fishing.
And if you don't know what a Canary or Rosethorn looks like, check out ADF&G's rockfish playing cards, part of ADF&G's Rockfish Initiative addressing rockfish harvest and population trends. Anglers can request a set of cards from area offices.
The 2021 Slope Rockfish Advisory Announcement can be found here.
Juneau Roadside Fisheries
Pink and chum fry are in the nearshore waters around the Juneau roadside and are attracting spring Dolly Varden and cutthroat trout to the nearshore habitats including estuaries and creek mouths. A reminder to anglers: steelhead on the Juneau road system may be caught but must be released immediately, and Peterson Creek is closed to sport fishing through June 30 to protect adult kelts as they complete their spawn.
Dolly Varden/cutthroat trout fishing
Anadromous Dolly Varden and cutthroat trout have moved into saltwater and can still be caught at the mouths of local creeks such as Salmon Creek, Sheep Creek, and Cowee Creek as they feed on emigrating salmon fry and smolts. Using small smolt imitation fly patterns or small spinners and spoons is the best way to catch these fish. There will also be some fish that do not leave their "overwintering" sites and head for the ocean. Known as "residents", these fish stay in their home lake, pond, or stream the entire year. While these fish may move around in the system to take advantage of food or environmental conditions, they will be present for your fishing pleasure all year. Anglers have reported catching hatchery-released rainbows in the Dredge Lakes area in Glacier, Moraine, and Crystal lakes. Note that only unbaited, artificial lures or flies may be used year-round in Dredge Lakes. The use of bait is prohibited.
In all drainages crossed by the Juneau road system, as well as the saltwater adjacent to the Juneau road system to a line ¼ mile offshore, cutthroat and rainbow trout bag limits (in combination) are 2 daily, 2 in possession with a 14-inch minimum and 22-inch maximum size limit. Dolly Varden limits are 2 daily, 2 in possession, no size limit. Anglers should check the 2021 Southeast Alaska Sportfish Regulation Summary for special regulations specific to the stream or lake they intend to fish.
Steelhead Trout fishing
Steelhead fishing is mostly over, with kelts having returned to the ocean post-spawn. In Southeast Alaska, most streams that contain steelhead have small annual returns (in the hundreds) and thus can be vulnerable to over-fishing. Retention of steelhead in the Juneau area roadside streams is prohibited. Any steelhead caught in drainage crossed by the Juneau road system must be released immediately. Current regionwide regulations elsewhere, away from the road system, prohibit any steelhead under 36" from being harvested and require that a harvest record be completed in ink immediately upon landing a steelhead that is to be harvested. Keep in mind that all fish should be treated with great care regardless of size to ensure the best chances for survival upon release. Please keep fish in the water while releasing.
Anglers should note that all sport fishing in Peterson Creek from the falls to the intertidal waters within a 200-yard radius of the creek mouth at saltwater is CLOSED April 1-June 30 to protect spawning steelhead. The Advisory Announcement can be found here. For the last 6 years, steelhead snorkel survey index counts conducted each spring in Peterson Creek have been below the pre-2015 average. A precautionary approach is being taken to conservatively manage the Peterson Creek steelhead stock during this period of very low escapements.
Juneau Marine Shellfish Fisheries
Except for red and blue king crab and Tanner crab, other shellfish are currently available to harvest. Personal use red and blue king crab fishing is presently closed (beginning April 1), but will reopen July 1. Sport and personal use Tanner crab fishing is closed until June 30.
Personal use king crab fishing is only open to Alaska residents. A sport fishing license and a Southeast Alaska Regional Personal Use King Crab Permit are required. These are available at the ADF&G online store. Please check for Personal Use Emergency Orders, legal-size and pot configurations, and restrictions online. Section 11-A is currently CLOSED to Alaska resident PU king crab fishing. Stay tuned for the Juneau area PU announcement later this year using the link above. Harvest must be reported online. Please check the 2021 Southeast Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet pages 33-36 for regulations specific to shellfish.
Dungeness and Tanner Crab
Fishing for shellfish is open the entire year, except that Tanner crab fishing is CLOSED June 16 through June 30. Tanner males need to be 5.5" minimum width, and females cannot be kept. When the season opens, no more than 4 pots or 10 rings per vessel may be used to take Tanner crab.
Dungeness crab can be taken the entire year, but Dungeness males need to be 6.5" minimum carapace width. For Alaska residents in the Juneau area, licensed anglers can keep 20 Dungeness males, 6.5" minimum width. For non-residents in the Juneau area, licensed anglers can keep 3 male Tanner and Dungeness crab (in combination). While taking Dungeness crab, 5 pots or 10 rings per person may be used, with a max of 10 pots or 20 rings per vessel.
In total, no more than 5 pots per person and 10 pots per vessel may be used bod taking shellfish regardless of pot type.
Sport and personal use regulations, limits, and gear requirements for shellfish can be found on pages 33-36 of the 2021 Southeast Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary Permits are not needed to harvest Tanner and Dungeness crab, just your sport fishing license.
Sport and personal use shrimp fisheries in the Juneau area will remain CLOSED until further notice. The closed area consists of all marine waters of Section 11-A north and west of a line extending from a regulatory marker near point Bishop to the Coast Guard marker and light on Point Arden, extending to a line at the latitude of Little Island light, and east of a line from Little Island light to Point Retreat light. Check the Sport and Personal Use News Release.
Outside of the 11-A area, sport and personal use fishing remain open. Sport and personal use shrimpers who have a valid sport fishing license must also have a free shrimp permit available on the ADF&G online store. Participating anglers must sign their permit in ink to make it valid and have the permit in possession while taking shrimp in Southeast Alaska. Shrimp limits and gear requirements for sport and personal use shrimp fishing can be found on pages 33-36 of the 2021 Southeast Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary. Reporting of effort and harvest is required and must be submitted to the department even if you did not fish.
Every spring/summer season, the Douglas office gets questions about harvesting clams in the Juneau area. ADF&G does not recommend harvesting clams from any waters in the Juneau area due to the possibility that the clams may contain Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) toxins. Currently, no beaches in the Juneau area are monitored on a regular basis (i.e- "certified") for PSP toxins. If you harvest, you do so at your own risk of PSP poisoning. Sporadic sampling has been conducted by the Southeast Alaska Tribal Ocean Research (SEATOR) project, but clams of any species and at any time during the year may still contain toxic levels of PSP. Please navigate to the following Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) web page for more information about PSP.
Interactive Fishing Location Maps
NEW! Check out the wefishak page on the ADF&G website for the new gofishak interactive map to discover popular fishing locations and information on species run timing, fishing gear selections, and boat and angler access tips!