Area Sport Fishing Reports
August 22, 2019
An excellent resource for trip planning is the Yakutat Interactive Map which provides information on fishing locations, species run timing, fishing gear, and angler access.
Coho fishing in freshwater has picked up in recent days. Good numbers of fish are pushing into the lower Situk and the pink salmon run is beginning to slow down. Fish are also being caught in the Lost River/Tawah Creek system, though that run is typically a little later than the Situk. Low flow conditions are still challenging anglers and likely keeping large numbers of fish from moving up the rivers, but Yakutat is getting rain today and more is in the forecast.
Saltwater coho fishing remains slow. Hopefully the change in weather will bring some fish into the nearshore areas.
The Situk River weir was pulled on August 11th. The total 2019 Situk River sockeye count was 72,561, counts can be viewed at the ADF&G Fish Counts website.
The total 2019 Situk River count of large king salmon was 623.
Sport fishing for king salmon remains closed in the Situk River. King salmon may not be targeted, retained, or possessed; king salmon caught while sockeye fishing may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately.
Sport fishing for king salmon is open in Yakutat Area marine waters. Catch rates in the Yakutat area low as anglers focus on coho and groundfish, but king salmon are being encountered.
The following regulations are now in effect:
- Bag and possession limit is one king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length.
- Bag and possession limit is one king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length;
- From August 16 through December 31, 2019, the annual harvest limit is one king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length, and any king salmon harvested earlier in 2019 apply toward the one fish annual harvest limit;
- Immediately upon retaining a king salmon a nonresident must enter the species, date and location, in ink, on the back of their sport fishing license or on a nontransferable harvest record.
Other Marine Fishing
Halibut fishing remains strong, with many anglers catching their limits. However, spiny dogfish have moved into the area, which can make halibut fishing difficult.
Lingcod fishing also continues to be good.
Rockfish catches also continue to be strong.
Effective Thursday, July 25th, retention of non-pelagic rockfish is prohibited in the Yakutat area and in all outside waters of Southeast Alaska, through August 31st.
An emergency order was issued in March 2019 that prohibits retention of non-pelagic rockfish in outside waters, and it was referenced in the Southeast Alaska sportfishing regulation summary on page 12.
All vessels are required to have at least one functional deep water release device (regardless of species targeted) and anglers are REQUIRED to use a rockfish release device to release nonpelagic rockfish during this time. 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.
Regulation summaries and the most recent regulatory changes are available online and at the Yakutat ADF&G office, most local tackle and outdoor stores in Alaska.
For further information, please contact the Yakutat Area Sport Fish management biologist: Matt Catterson at (907) 784-3222