Area Sport Fishing Reports
Prince William Sound
Archived Sport Fishing Report
June 30, 2020
* 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.
General Area Description: includes all waters between Cape Fairfield and Cape Suckling.
Effective January 2020, the use of a deepwater release mechanism is required on all sport fishing vessels in Alaska and they must be used to release rockfish back down to depth of capture or 100 feet, whichever is shallower. Never heard of deepwater release? Check out our webpage for more info!
Please review the Emergency Orders and Advisory Announcements below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip.
- Emergency Order 2-SHR-6-13-20 decreases the number of shrimp pots allowed to harvest shrimp in the Prince William Sound shrimp fishery to three pots per person with a maximum of three pots per vessel used to take shrimp.
- Sockeye salmon fishing has been good on the Eyak River with fish building at the lake outlet. Fish are starting to show up downstream in Alaganik Slough.
- Remember: Effective June 1 - September 30, Eyak River Special Regulations are in effect around the Eyak Lake dam/weir and highway bridge. Only single-hook, artificial flies with a gap of 3/8 inch or less between a point and shank are allowed AND no additional weight may be attached to the line.
- King salmon fishing at Fleming Spit (in Cordova) has been fair. Fish continue to be caught in the salt water and some fish are milling around inside the lagoon. Fish the incoming tide with spinners or bait.
- Remember: Effective June 1 - September 30, no snagging is allowed in the Cordova Terminal Harvest area.
- Trout/Dolly Varden/Arctic Char
- Cutthroat and rainbow trout fishing opened on June 15. Dolly Varden are present in many streams.
- Try fry/smolt imitation and olive streamer flies or small spinners.
- Blueberry and Thompson lakes and Ruth Pond were stocked at the beginning of June and are getting stocked again soon.
- Ruth Pond is a fun easily accessible location for kids right in Valdez to catch rainbow trout!
- Arctic grayling fishing can be good on Thompson Lake for anglers using smaller sized fly-fishing gear.
Port Sampling efforts in Whittier and Valdez are in full effect. Please assist our port sampling program by returning to the harbor with whole groundfish or groundfish carcasses and allowing ADF&G technicians to sample your harvest. Data collected from the sport fish harvest is needed to manage and maintain healthy fisheries. We appreciate you supporting the port sampling program and your assistance in getting managers information that aids in managing fisheries in the Southcentral.
- Lingcod season opens on July 1. With the good weather getting outside towards Seal Rocks or Wessel Reef will increase your chances of landing one of these fish. Remember to have a measuring tape with you. Try using large jigs (white is a good color option) on rocky pinnacles. Remember, the minimum size to retain a lingcod is 35 inches with the head attached (or 28 inches with the head removed). Do not use a gaff to puncture any fish you think you might release.
- When targeting lingcod your chances of catching rockfish are high. Make sure you have a deepwater release mechanism on board your vessel as this is now mandatory.
- Halibut fishing has been good when weather permits getting out further, but you don’t have to travel too far. Try around Perry, Naked, and Lone islands if you want to stay close. If you can get out further, Montague Strait and Elrington Island have been producing steady catches of halibut.
- The Valdez Halibut Derby started on May 23. The leading fish is over 200 lbs!
- Rockfish limits year-round are four fish per day, eight in possession of which only one per day, one is possession may be a nonpelagic rockfish. Check your 2020 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for species identification information.
- Chum salmon can be caught around Ester Island and around Port Wells with fish bound for the hatcheries.
- Coghill River weir has counted over 13,000 sockeye salmon to date and more fish are on their way. You can check out daily fish passage online on the Fish Counts page. If you can access the lower river you shouldn’t have trouble getting into some fish. Commercial boats will be fishing in the area throughout the week so keep an eye out for nets in the water.
- Sockeye salmon fishing has been great in Main Bay. Commercial openers have begun so there will be a lot of boats in these areas during openers that usually happen on Mondays and Thursdays.
- The Eshamy Bay run of sockeye salmon is later than Main Bay. Very few fish have moved into the lagoon. This location is usually better for sockeye salmon towards the end of July.
- Kings are milling around the Sound. Trolling or mooching in Passage Canal has been production for some anglers. Reports are still coming in of fish still getting caught further out towards Cape Cleare, but also around the south end of Culross Island and Pigot Point. If you are out fishing by boat, try trolling 20 - 50 feet down with a small to medium sized herring and an oversized flasher.
- Remember, snagging is not allowed in the Whittier Boat Harbor.
- Pinks are starting to slowly roll into the Port of Valdez. More fish should start showing up over the coming weeks.
- Don’t forget to get your shrimp permit! The sport and subsistence shrimp season is currently open and will close on September 15, 2020. You are required to have your permit with you and document anytime you have pots in the water.
- After retrieval, you must record your catch on your permit immediately after you harvest shrimp.
- You can report your shrimp harvest online any time. Once the season closes you must report all of your harvest no later than October 15, 2020. **Harvest must be reported for each individual time you pull your pots.
- Shrimping has been good! There is no magic depth for shrimping. A good starting point would be in the 300-400’ range. Keep an eye out for good habitat such as rocky slopes.
- If your pots get lost or stolen please contact Alaska Wildlife Troopers (AWT).
- Valdez AWT 835-4307
- Cordova AWT 424-3184
- Whittier AWT 352-5401
Don’t forget to bring your 2020 sport fishing license and king stamp! Help maximize social distancing and purchase your 2020 sport fishing license and king stamp through the ADF&G online store and print it off from the comfort of your own home. Also, make sure to review Emergency Orders and the 2020 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for the area you are fishing before you head out.
For additional information, please contact the Anchorage Area Office at (907) 267-2218.