Area Sport Fishing Reports
Archived Sport Fishing Report
July 22, 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.
* The Alaska Board of Fisheries adopted several proposals establishing new sport fish regulations for the Northern and Western Cook Inlet Area at its Anchorage February 2020 meeting. Please see the 2020 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulation Summary booklet for a complete summary of the Northern and Western Cook Inlet sport and personal use fisheries regulations.
Please review the Emergency Orders and Advisory Announcements below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip.
- Emergency Order 2-RS-2-39-20 opened the Fish Creek personal used dipnet fishery 6 a.m. - 11 p.m. Sunday, July 19 through Friday, July 31.
- Emergency Order 2-RS-2-37-20 closed the waters of Anderson Creek on the Susitna River to dipnetting approximately 50 feet upstream and 300 feet downstream of the mouth effective through 11:00 p.m. Wednesday, July 29, 2020.
- Emergency Order 2-R-2-24-20 added three new lakes - Leech, Summit, and Zero - to the stocking program in the Northern Cook Inlet management area effective June 20, 2020. The bag and possession limit for rainbow trout in these stocked lakes is five fish, of which only one fish may be 20 inches or greater in length. For Arctic grayling, the bag and possession limit is five fish, no size limit.
- Emergency Order 2-NP-2-14-20 closed Alexander Lake and Sucker Lake to sport fishing through
11:59 p.m. Friday, July 31, 2020.
- The Fish Creek dipnet fishery is open 6 a.m. - 11 p.m. each day through the remainder of July. Try fishing the incoming tides and please be considerate of private property postings. Please take head of the 30-foot tides, strong tidal currents, and the mud.
- The new personal use dipnet fishery will be open Wednesday July 23 and next Saturday July 25 on the lower Susitna River during this week. This fishery runs 6 a.m. - 11 p.m. on Saturdays and Wednesdays July 10 - July 31. The designated area for fishing is between regulatory markers posted approximately one mile downstream of Susitna Station (just below the Yentna River mouth) down to markers posted just below the Alexander Creek cut-off/northern tip of Bell Island. This fishery is part of the Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use permit. Dipping success should only improve with each new opener until the end of July.
- Bait is now allowed in many - but not all - Susitna River tributaries. Check for exceptions to the general regulations before heading out.
- Anglers are reminded that bait is not allowed on the Little Susitna River until August 6, and the daily bag and possession limit for coho salmon is two fish. Coho fishing has started slow this season, but expected to pick up gradually each day. Peak fishing for coho at Little Susitna is still a couple weeks off. Chum salmon are readily available.
- Cottonwood, Wasilla, and Jim creeks of Knik Arm are good local spots to try for sockeye this week. Jim Creek is open 7 days per week. Sometimes eggs or even the Alaska favorite red pixie work for sockeye at Jim Creek. Cottonwood and Wasilla creeks are open to fishing for salmon (other than kings) this Saturday and Sunday from 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
- Its time to fish Larson Creek on the Talkeetna this week. Weir counts for Larson sockeye may be found on the Division of Commercial Fish Upper Cook Inlet Management Area webpage.
- Pink salmon numbers area building quickly at Deshka and should provide some fun fishing for the family at the mouth this week. There will also be a few early coho mixed in.
- Chum and pink salmon are steadily moving into the lower sections of Parks Highway streams from Willow, north to Talkeetna. Streams are normal level and clear and ready to be fished. Try some egg sucking leaches and marabou jigs on a light fly rod or different colored bladed spinners if spin casting.
- On the west side of Cook Inlet, coho are entering the Chuit and Theodore rivers. Once you take your limit of coho salmon in this area you must stop fishing for the day. Also try the small Beluga River tributaries.
- Fishing for rainbows on the Parks Highway streams is good. Try Willow, Montana, Kashwitna, Little Willow and Goose creeks. Fish wet flies like RJ wooly buggers, leeches, sculpins and the infamous egg sucking leech are great bets. Also try egg patterns and flesh flies as the king salmon are starting to spawn now.
- Willow Creek has multiple access points off Willow Fishhook Road. Montana Creek may be accessed at several locations off the Talkeetna Spur Road; single day float trips are popular on Willow and Montana creeks.
- Further north, tributaries of the Chulitna, such as Honolulu Creek and Byers Creek should also provide good rainbow trout opportunity.
- Roadside, try Nancy, Big, Horseshoe, and Rainbow lakes. Fly-in, try Trapper, Shell, and Eight-mile lakes. Try top-water weedless lures, leaches, and flies fished in heavily vegetated areas. Herring under a bobber works quite well this time of year.
- Kid friendly local stocked lakes include Kepler/Bradley, Finger, Lucille, and Matanuska.
- This is a good time of year to fish big rainbows in Seymour, Visnaw, and Lalen lakes. Try fly fishing deep waters just above weed lines with leech patterns.
- Nancy Lake State Park Recreation Area offers come nice quite fishing, and canoe opportunities.
- If you head out on 4 - wheelers to Ruby or Wishbone lakes, bring the fishing rods. Remember Wishbone is single hook, artificial lure or fly only, and catch-and-release only. Anglers report nice fish up to 20 inches.
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 ADF&G Palmer Area Office at (907) 746-6300.