Area Sport Fishing Reports
May 03, 2019
The spring steelhead fishing season is in full swing. Anglers reports strong catch rates after recent high water events have subsided. Annual surveys of index streams are ongoing but indicate a strong steelhead run in 2019 for the Petersburg/Wrangell area. Water temperatures are steadily warming and spawning activity is being observed regularly. Anglers can expect several more weeks of fishing opportunity as steelhead continue to enter freshwaters during early May.
Steelhead can be found in many local streams but some of the most popular areas to fish are Petersburg Creek, Big Creek and Hamilton River. With so many steelhead systems in the area there is never a shortage of areas to get out and explore.
Dolly Varden and Trout
Dolly Varden and trout can be targeted year-round but are most active in the spring months. Fishing is quickly picking up as water temperatures are warming and trout are actively feeding.
Try fishing around log jams, cut banks, and eddie lines for these aggressive species. In the coming weeks Dolly Varden can also be found in nearshore areas as they cruise marine shorelines around the confluence of fresh and saltwater, feeding on juvenile salmon.
The vast majority of marine waters in the Petersburg/Wrangell area are currently closed to king salmon retention. Opportunity to harvest king salmon will be available in areas where Alaska hatchery produced king salmon will be returning beginning June 1, 2019. A news release announcing regulations for individual hatchery areas will be released later this month. For detailed information including maps of areas affected, please see the news release’s announcing king salmon restrictions in the Petersburg/Wrangell area and the regional king salmon bag and possession limit which are available on our website.
It is early to target halibut as catch rates typically increase as we progress into the summer, however catching a halibut is still possible this time of year.
Sport fishing for lingcod is currently closed in all Southeast Alaska waters but will open on May 16.
Rockfish are available year-round and fishing is generally good this time of year. Anglers are encouraged to use a rockfish release device whenever releasing rockfish. 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. Anglers are reminded that beginning January 1, 2020 all anglers will be required to carry and use a rockfish release device whenever releasing rockfish.
NEW-interactive fishing resource
Check out the Petersburg/Wrangell interactive map to discover popular fishing locations and information on species run timing, fishing gear selections, and boat and angler access tips thru the Sport Fish gofishak application