The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) says the Resurrection River, downstream of the Seward Highway and Nash Road to the ADF&G markers is open to salmon fishing (except king salmon). Only unbaited, single-hook, artificial lures or flies are allowed. Snagging is not permitted in freshwater.
Pink salmon continue to get caught at the head of Resurrection Bay. Very few coho salmon have moved up into the freshwater yet, but a few sockeye are still hanging around. It is common for coho to move up into creeks and rivers when water levels increase with rain. When we start getting some good rain look for more coho salmon to move up into the freshwater.
The Seward Lagoon and Outfall Stream Youth-Only Fishery opened for coho salmon on August 25. A visual inspection of the lagoon on August 24 showed mostly pink salmon in the lagoon and outfall creek. This Youth-Only Fishery is open through September 7. Fishing for coho salmon in the lagoon should pick up later in the fishery. This area is closed to adults.
Halibut fishing has been reported good. Anglers have been catching medium-sized halibut when the weather has allowed them to get out.
Rockfish limits year-round are four fish per day, eight in possession of which only one per day and two in possession can be nonpelagic rockfish. Check the 2021 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for species identification information.
A deepwater release mechanism is required on all sportfishing vessels in Alaska, and they must be used to release rockfish back down to a depth of capture or 100 feet, whichever is shallower. Ever heard of the deepwater release? Check out the ADF&G rockfish webpage for more info.
Lingcod season is currently open except for inside Resurrection Bay and has been reported as fair. The bag and possession limit is one fish that is 35 inches long or longer with the head attached, or 28 inches or greater with the head removed. A person may not gaff a fish that is not of the legal size or that is to be released.
The king salmon limit in Resurrection Bay is currently two per day, any size. There is no annual or seasonal king salmon limit in effect, and there is no king salmon harvest reporting requirement, but a king stamp is required. King salmon fishing has been fair for boaters. Boat anglers trolling for kings are still having the best luck though mooching has been productive for some as well.
Coho have salmon come into the bay. Reports have been of anglers catching cohos near the head of the bay. Many anglers are reporting good schools of 8 to 10 pound. coho being picked up. Try trolling with a small to medium-sized herring and an oversized flasher.
Fishing in Troop Lake has been good as long as you aren’t fighting the wind. Try casting small spinners. There is limited shore access so hiking in an inflatable can get you more access around the lake.
John Hedberg Lake, located in Nikiski at approximately milepost 23 of the Kenai Spur Highway, will be stocked with 700 rainbow trout catchable sized fish for the first time on September 2. Beginning in 2022, this lake will be stocked with 1,000 rainbow trout fingerling yearly. Details for John Hedberg Lake can be found on the ADF&G Alaska Lake Database.
The bag and possession limit for rainbow trout in this stocked lake is five fish, of which only one fish may be 20 inches or greater in length. The annual limit for rainbow trout 20 inches or longer is two. If you retain a fish greater than 20 inches, you must immediately record that harvest on your harvest card or sport fishing license.
The stocking program provides alternative opportunities for anglers that might otherwise direct their efforts toward native fish that are vulnerable to overfishing. As sport fishing effort continues to increase in the Northern Kenai Peninsula, hatchery fish are becoming a more important to satisfy recreational demands.