Area Sport Fishing Reports
Archived Sport Fishing Report
June 08, 2021
* Just a reminder to all anglers, please do your part to help slow the spread of Covid-19 by practicing social distancing while sport and personal use fishing as well as when shopping for fishing supplies from your local store, and by wearing a face covering when social distancing is not possible.
Rivers are open throughout the Northwest and North Slope Management Area (NW/NSMA), but most lakes are still at least partially ice-covered. Fishing for Arctic grayling and Dolly Varden should be very good in Norton Sound streams as these fish target out-migrating salmon smolt. Small spinners and jigs will catch both species, and Arctic grayling can be caught on topwater flies as well. Fishing for northern pike should be good in the Pilgrim-Kuzitrin River complex, and in off-channel habitats of the larger Noatak, Kobuk, and Selawik Rivers. Big spoons and soft baits work well, as does large topwater lures and flies. North Slope rivers are high and turbid right now from breakup and fishing will be difficult until water levels drop.
Salmon have not entered streams in the NW/NSMA yet, but the first king, pink, and chum salmon should arrive soon to the rivers of southern Norton Sound. Escapement projects will not start for another two weeks or so. Sheefish will not begin their upstream migration to the spawning grounds in the Kobuk and Selawik Rivers before July. Similarly, spawning Dolly Varden will not begin upstream migration in Northwestern and North Slope rivers until July. The Noatak and Wulik Rivers are the most popular spots for large Dolly Varden, with fish over ten pounds possible in both drainages.
Because fish typically grow and reproduce more slowly at high latitudes and elevations, please use proper techniques when engaging in catch-and-release in order to ensure survival of the released fish such as:
- Use lures with a single hook and crimp down the barb. Do not use bait.
- Land the fish with a soft net and keep the fish in the water when removing the hook.
- To release the fish, hold it gently facing into the current or in water without current gently cradle the fish and move it slowly back and forth until it swims away under its own power.
Please review the Emergency Orders and Advisory Announcements below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip:
Don’t forget to bring your 2021 sport fishing license. Help maximize social distancing by purchasing your sport fishing license at the ADF&G Online Store and print it off from the comfort of your home. Also, be sure to review Emergency Orders and the 2021 Northern Sport Fishing Regulations Summary Booklet for the area you are fishing before you head out.
For more information, please call the Northwest and North Slope Area Management Biologist at (907) 459-7268.