As with most of Southeast Alaska, our fishing is outstanding for both fresh and saltwater species. Prince of Wales Island has about 1,000 miles of coastline with many bays and inlets which provide some of the most beautiful, exciting and productive fishing areas in the world. Saltwater fishing in our area offers all species of salmon, red snapper, halibut and many varieties of rock cod.
Fly & gear fisherman welcome!
If you enjoy stream and lake fishing, we have some of the best around. Try your skills out on the trout, Dolly Varden, Pink Salmon, Sockeye, Silvers, and Steelhead.
For online fishing licenses and other info, visit the Alaska Department of Fish and Game
THE BEST TIMES TO FISH ON PRINCE OF WALES ISLAND
King Salmon (Chinook): Mid May – Mid August. Kings or Chinook salmon can be found in Coffman Cove year round but the spawning run begins showing up in mid May with the bulk of the local fish passing through in the last half of June and the first week of July. These locally spawning salmon average about 20 lbs. The remainder of July and August we still get Kings, bound for other rivers as well as feeder kings. I’ve had days in August when the King salmon fishing was fantastic, you just never know. Our feeder king salmon average about 14 lbs but I’ve caught them over 30.
Silver Salmon (Coho): Late June – October. In Ketchikan we get a unique summer run of silvers that start showing up the last week of June and continue through August. The early run of silvers average about 8 lbs when they first show up in June and grow to about a 10 lb average by August with a few 15 pound coho starting to show up. The biggest and most abundant run of silvers in Ketchikan is the Fall run. The fall coho start to show up the last week of August and run clear into October. These salmon average from 12 to 14 lbs in September with coho up to 20 lbs available.
Pink Salmon (Humpies): July – August. Pinks are the most abundant and the smallest of the Alaskan salmon but they can put up a pretty good fight and eat well when they’re bright.
Chum Salmon (Keta): July – August. Chums are the second largest of the Pacific salmon species. Alaskan chums are a very important commercial fish but are a great fight on a salmon rod too. Chums will fight similar to a king salmon by taking deep dives and long heavy runs. Bright ocean chum salmon is delicious eating and should not be confused with a spawning dog salmon.
Sockeye Salmon (Reds): July-August. There are several Sockeye rivers near Ketchikan. Sockeye are not easily taken in the salt water but if you can find them schooled up in a lake or river flossing them with flies is a sportsmen’s fantasy.
Halibut: June – August. Halibut come into the shallow inland waters to feed on herring, salmon, cod and other fish also making the summer journey through the waters of SE Alaska.
Rockfish: Year round. Rockfish are local inhabitants that typically stay within a 5 mile radius.