Area Sport Fishing Reports
October 02, 2018
Coho (silver) salmon catch rates have fallen in the marine fishery while opportunity for coho fishing is still present in freshwater. Typically, freshwater fishing for coho salmon peaks in the month of September and opportunity will continue through October for the majority of systems in the area.
Anglers are reminded that the use of bait is allowed in many freshwater systems between September 15 and November 15, but be sure to check the 2018 sport fishing regulation summary for a list of the specific freshwater locations where bait is prohibited year-round.
King salmon catch rates have slowed as the season winds into winter. Anglers may continue to intercept king salmon throughout the year although at reduced catch rates. Resident anglers may use two rods while fishing for king salmon during the winter season between October 1, 2018 and March 31, 2019.
The following bad and possession limits continue to apply for all marine waters in the Petersburg and Wrangell areas:
- The bag and possession limit (residents and nonresidents) is one king salmon 28 inches or greater in length.
- The nonresident annual limit is one king salmon, nonresident anglers are reminded to record their king salmon harvest on the back of their fishing license or harvest record card.
Nonpelagic rockfish regulations for Southeast Alaska Inside waters, including the Petersburg and Wrangell management area:
- The nonpelagic rockfish bag and possession limit is one fish for residents and nonresidents.
- Nonresident anglers have an annual limit of one yelloweye rockfish.
Anglers are encouraged to use a rockfish release device whenever releasing nonpelagic 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.
Dolly Varden, Rainbow trout and Cutthroat trout
This is an excellent time to target Dolly Varden and cutthroat trout. These species often feed along the nearshore marine environments during the summer months but will move into freshwater as salmon begin spawing, taking advantage of loose salmon eggs as a food source. This time of year anglers may find excellent fishing opportunity in freshwaters. Look for trophy sized Dolly Varden and cutthroat trout lingering behind schools of salmon along cutbanks, confluences, pools and around large woody debris.
Although most steelhead systems in the area are dominated by spring run steelhead there is a fall component to some systems. Although few in numbers, anglers should be on the lookout for fall run steelhead when freshwater fishing.
With the conclusion of the marine creel survey for the season, inseason halibut catch rates are no longer being collected in the sport fishery but halibut can still be caught in area waters. Halibut catch rates typically increase throughout the summer as these fish migrate into the area and remain stable throughout the early fall before declining as winter approaches.