Prime Fishing in Alaska

Alaska is probably the most prime fishing spot anywhere, followed by Minnesota and Florida.  The reason for this is the abundance of fish here but the variety as well.  This blog will discuss two unique fish and the ways in which to catch them when in Alaska. You can sport fish or you can fish for leisure. Either way, these two fish will pose to be a challenge to catch if you’re not experienced.

  1. Swordfish – Swordfish is abundant in the Pacific.  Hawaii has a large population that swims off the shores, but Alaska (at least territorially) has the largest population of them.  This fish is not an easy one to haul in, primarily because of its size.  Its weight is not a problem if they stay still, but you know that’s not a possibility.  Swordfish aren’t picky about what they eat.  They are almost like sharks in that way.  The best bait to use, however, is not even a fish or seafood.  Lamb.  Lamb has a stronger concentration of blood content, believe it or not.  Its odor is also more detectable. But where it really makes it an attraction to swordfish is that it’s not overly fatty making it more palatable.  Fishing for these guys takes time and patience.  When on the boat, ensure you have pole holders that are stable.  The best way to real them in is by putting the boat in motion.  Using momentum will help reel in the fish.  Be careful of the sword, when reeling in.  It will certainly require two or three people to reel in so be prepared for a battle, but it is made much easier when the boat is put in motion.
  2. Arctic Grayling – The grayling is a unique fish.  It’s hard to find in the Pacific, in general, but you can find an abundance of them close to the Arctic.  Grayling are fun to catch because they are easier to catch.  The complete opposite to swordfish in regards to catching, the grayling is known as the clumsy one. They can fall for anything. Fishers, the best place to find them is near land.  They thrive better in shallower waters much like salmon and catfish. As far as bait is concerned, stink bait is preferable.  Their curiosity is often their downfall.

Fishing in Alaska is abundant and there are literally dozens of species there. But these two fish are less common to be fished anywhere except in the Alaskan waters.  Whatever type of fishing you are doing, there will be a lot to choose from.

Fish in Alaska

Common Fish in Alaska

Alaska is full of fishing, regardless of the type of fish.  With so many waters surrounding the area there are plenty of opportunities whether you are an amateur angler or an experienced one.  One of the best things about the fishing in Alaska is because many people know that it’s a haven for the economy there so there is an abundance of variety.  The most common fish in Alaska are:

  • Salmon – It is difficult to determine whether Salmon is more predominant than Halibut but they are close.  There are many types of salmon swimming in the Alaskan waters.  On where to predominantly find the fish, look toward the shorelines or in areas with low water levels.  If one is daring, you can look at the Kenai Peninsula or the Bristol Bay area. Freshwater or saltwater salmon are great finds – and the flavor is amazing!
  • Arctic Char – The char is a great fish to find in fresh water.  It is not as elusive as rumor likes to have it. There is actually an abundance of char in Alaska. Looking in the Brooks Range, one will find no shortage of char.  When there look for a fish that is olive in color on the top and gets lighter toward the belly.  They migrate up the river in order to spawn, so depending on how strategic you want to be, you can plan your time around spawn season.
  • Trout – Trout fishing is common in Alaska – and all over the country for that matter. Trout is a special kind of fish and the peak season in Alaska is from May to October.  This is incredible, given the amount of trout there are in Alaska.  It is prime season during those months. There are various forms of trout, too, from rainbow trout to steelhead trout.  Common areas to find any kind of trout are streams and banks.
  • Halibut – This is the gold trophy of fishing in Alaska.  Its meat is delicious and sells for a premium dollar.  Unlike trout, halibut is a year ‘round fish.  You can find it in just about any water source there is. For better results, go deep water.

While these are just four types of fish, there are also varieties of shellfish and other seafood.  Before taking on a fishing venture, be sure to take advantage of an Alaska fishing report.  This will benefit you in the long run, guaranteed. Fishing in Alaska is unpredictable, but you are at least guaranteed to find something, whether fishing for fun or necessity.

Travel Fishing in Alaska

There are many reasons why one would want to take a trip to Alaska.  It could be school, watch the scenery, experience a different culture – and fishing.  Because Alaska is so wide and there is an abundance of waterways surrounding it fishing is both culture and sport.  Fishing drives much of the economy there and it is a popular activity to partake in because there is already so much there. Hundreds of species of fish and shellfish can be caught in and around Alaska.  As it is a haven for fishing, anglers from all over the world flock to the beautiful waters to feed their hobby.  They come in groups or as individuals.

 Fishing All Times of Year

For the angler, fishing can take place any time of the year.  In Alaska there are commercial fishing vessels, coupled with sports fishers.  Of course there are also the casual fishers, too.   Even though there are a variety of fishing areas in Alaska that can be fished any time of the year, it is still necessary to dress for the occasion.  Much like anywhere else the weather can be unpredictable.  No one wants to be caught in inclement weather so dressing for the occasion and checking weather reports will enhance the fishing experience.
It is also a good idea to obtain a copy of a fishing report that can be used to help identify the temperatures in various places.  Alaska is a haven for fishing and what makes it even better is that there are electrifying tours all year ‘round for exactly that purpose.

Guests and even locals understand that it drives the economy and because there is an overabundance of fish in the nearby waters fishing has taken on a life of its own.  Whether it is deep sea fishing or fly fishing there is an area where fishing can take place and depending on what kind of fishing you want to do, there is bound to be a place nearby that fits those needs.

Be Prepared to Fish

Not only is weather important to consider but being prepared with knowing the geography, bringing the right equipment, and bringing on a fishing report will provide a more detailed fishing experience.  Fishing is still possible even without them.

For the sports fisher or group fishermen, the same applies.  Fishing is fun but it is a lot more fun when fish are caught.  When considering areas to fish next, consider fishing in Alaska.

Taking Your Fishing to Alaska

Fishing is fun wherever you decide to go, but in Alaska, anglers stand a chance of catching something they may never see anywhere else. Alaska is home to several waterways and is surrounded by a major ocean and several lakes and ponds.  Die-hard anglers, even anglers who are fairly new to the game will flock to Alaska for a fishing season.  There are plenty of areas of fishing in Alaska and it can take place any time of the year as well.  There are many resorts and cabins that specifically rent to fishermen.  As recently as 2009 some cruise lines have given the okay to take their guests on fishing excursions off the coast.

Anglers will find anything from salmon and halibut to tuna and Alaskan king crab.  The possibilities are endless, as are the waters that surround Alaska and its islands.  Before fishing in Alaska it is vital to take three things.

  1. Fishing License – A fishing license can be purchased cheaply in Alaska and it allows fishers to fish in several different ways in several different areas.  Dynamite fishing is illegal, however, regardless of the body of water.
  2. Fishing Report – A fishing report reveals a lot of things from the weather to the type of fish that is biting the most. These are common things for every fisher to have, but in Alaska there are plenty of fish and several areas to fish, so a report becomes vital. There is nothing more frustrating than going home empty handed.
  3. Proper Equipment – Whether going out deep sea fishing or fishing in a lake it is important to bring out the right equipment.  Without the right equipment one may not be able to fish to its full potential (and in some cases, not able to fish at all).

With hundreds upon thousands of anglers heading into Alaska every year to fish, it is easy to get caught up in the game.  Casual fishers and professionals alike all understand how good the fishing can actually be.  It is a major economic driving force in Alaska and fishers take to the waters every year to make a living for their families.

Fishing is a major industry but there is no fishing quite like fishing in Alaska.  Seemingly every year, records are broken for size of fish and numbers of fish caught.  The Pacific feeds certain schools of fish and sea animals into the bays and rivers diversifying the type of fish that are available.

When thinking about going out for a fantastic excursion, fishing in Alaska is not a bad way to go.

Fishing License

Licensing and Permits

Outrageous!  This might be the word that comes to mind when an out-of-state fisherman begins to look for a permit in Alaska.  Starting at $20 for a 1-day pass and going up to $145 for an annual pass.  As the rules go, anyone over the age of 16 must purchase a permit and additional stamps are required if you intend to fish for King Salmon.  These stamps cost $10 for a single day and a whopping $100 for an annual stamp.  That said, a fisherman coming from the “Lower 48” may expect to pay quite a bit of money if they are planning on fishing the whole season.  Laws are applicable to both fresh and saltwater fishing, so it is very important to purchase your license and have it on you at all times.

In Conclusion

Without question, fishing in Alaska can be an expensive adventure.  There is no comparison though when it comes to the quality and quantity that you are going to pull in.  Whether you are fishing by yourself and eating as you go or taking a guided tour out and having your catch packed and shipped home, you are guaranteed to have a good time!

The Fish of Alaska

The last great frontier!  Alaska has long been considered the last bit of untamed area in the United States.  Bit may be an understatement as Alaska is a little more than twice the size of Texas.  The native Indians call the state Alyeska, meaning “Great Land”, not only because of its size but also the bountiful harvest provided the good Mother Earth each year.


The Fish of Alaska

  1. Halibut fishing is one of the major activities participated in by both local and out-of-state fishermen.  These fish routinely reach 50 to 80 pounds though pulling in 100 pounders is very common.  Spending any amount of time in AK will quickly let one know that this fish alone feeds a good portion of the state.  It is hard to find a restaurant that doesn’t sell fish and chips.  The fish of course is Halibut and it is always good.

  1. King, Silver, and Sockeye Salmon run so deep in season that in many places such as Anchorage there is little room to find a spot on the shore.  Having seen “combat fishing” first hand, I can attest to the fact that most of these fishermen have no need to bait their hooks.  Often, casting out a decent sized treble hook will do just fine.  One quick jerk and you are almost assured to come up with something nice.  Alaska sports some of the largest Freshwater Kings in the world, giving the Halibuts a run for their money.

  1. Rainbow Trout hold their own in the fishing world and were the original “famous fish” before the Salmon hatcheries made their mark.  15 pound pulls are a standard and are recorded yearly.  The best area for these guys is the National Wildlife Refuge, which issues a very limited number of passes each year.  If you are going Trout fishing, make sure you sign up early.

Alaska Fishing Destinations

Fishing is one of the most popular activities in Alaska, for residents and visitors alike. Below are some of the most notable fishing destinations in Alaska:

  • Kenai River / Kenai Peninsula – For those looking for large fish, the Kenai River and Peninsula is an ideal spot. It is the most popular sport fishing destination in the state, and is known for the large-size fish that inhabit its waters.  The world-record king salmon (97 lbs.) was caught in the Kenai River, and many trophy-size rainbow trout have been caught there as well. Besides salmon and rainbow trout, anglers can also find plenty of halibut and smokeye.

  • Lake Creek – Also in south central Alaska, this area is great for anglers who also want a vacation experience. The secluded stream provides a getaway for many in nearby Anchorage and plenty of opportunities for both solo and guided fishing. The lake is home to many different salmon species, as well as rainbow trout and Arctic grayling, to name a few. Lake Creek is also a popular place for spin fishing and fly fishing.

  • Togiak River – Located in southwest Alaska, the Togiak River is another popular sport fishing destination. Its waters offer many salmon species, rainbow trout, dolly varden, pike and Arctic graylings galore. There are many guided fishing tours available, or one can try their luck solo.

  • Nushagak River – Also in southwest Alaska, flowing into the Bristol Bay, Nushagak River offers all five major Pacific salmon species, as well as rainbow trout, pike, Arctic grayling, burbot, whitefish and Arctic char. Avid anglers should take note of the annual run of King Salmon in this river in June and July.

  • Aniak – For those looking for a truly remote experience, visit the small town of Aniak in western Alaska, which is only accessible by air and water. Those who fish the Aniak River can expect to see between seven and 10 different fish species, including salmon, pike, rainbow trout and Arctic char. Aniak is located in one of the most remote areas of Alaska. It has a limited number of lodges for visitors looking for a fishing adventure in the Alaskan wilderness.

  • Holitna River – Another remote location for consideration is the Holitna River in western Alaska. Anglers can opt for a solo, unguided fishing experience or a fully guided tour. The Holitna is one of the best Arctic char fishing spots in the state, although other types of fish swim there, including salmon, pike and sheefish. Due mainly to its remote location, the Holitna is not heavily used, making it ideal for anglers who prefer quiet solitude.

Aniak and Holitna River are just two of many remote fishing locations in Alaska. Simple online research provides numerous locations for a fly-in fishing trip. Fly-ins offer an abundance of large, handsome fish, privacy and a chance to visit out-of-the-way areas of Alaska. Many of these remote locations have lodges and inns, to provide a comfortable stay.

The number of options, both of fishing and lodging locations, are virtually endless in Alaska. It is best to determine what part of the state you wish to visit and what type of fish you wish to catch. The rest is a matter of simple research to determine your ideal Alaskan fishing spot.

Fishing Report and Fishing for Fun

Advantages of Having a Fishing Report in Alaska

There are many advantages of obtaining fishing reports and without one, an angler could return home empty handed.  With the many types of fishing available, not taking advantage of a fishing report can be an incredible mistake.


  • Weather – Because weather in Alaska can drastically change very quickly, the fishing will be drastically different.  Knowing exactly how the weather is, especially judging by the time of year, it will be beneficial for anglers to adjust their fishing outing.  Weather plays a big role in shaping the way an angler approaches fishing.


  • Location Specifics – Anglers want to know if specific locations are good to fish or not.  There is no point in spending long periods of time in one spot if nothing is biting.  That can be a frustrating experience but it doesn’t have to be that way. Knowing what’s good at the location is only half the battle.


  • General Information on Fish – It makes no difference what is trying to be fished.  Information of species of fish can help determine what kind of fishing is allowed or what type of strategy to take.


  • Geographical Information – Unless anglers have been to certain spots before it becomes very difficult to determine the geography.  Knowing the geography helps anglers know exactly what they’re in for and what they need they need to do to be safe.


Fishing in Alaska doesn’t require a report, but it does require a license or permit.  As vast of an area as Alaska is, safety precautions must also be considered.

Fishing Safety

Seemingly an innocuous activity, fishing can still be a dangerous.  With unpredictable weather patterns and harsh terrains, one slip or mishap can be hazardous.  All fishers, regardless of experience level, should take necessary precautions and have the proper materials and gear in place should something happen.  Fishing in Alaska should be fun, but it is no laughing matter when someone is fatally injured.  Fishing is a predominant source of money for Alaska but there are just as many who do it for leisure and there is who do it for commerce. In any event, safety should be emphasized – no weather report needs to state the obvious in this case.

Fishing for Fun

Fishing does not have to be a competitive affair, but the benefits of fishing can’t be easily quantified.  For fishing lovers much of the competition is not with other fishermen; it is with their selves.  Many social events take place around it and it is something that brings in communities and people.

Fun for fishing in Alaska is only the beginning.  Being armed with the proper know how and the right reports will make the joy of fishing even better.  Never forget to always don safety gear wherever the fishing takes place.  Go out and have the time of your lives.  You will not regret the decision.

Interior Region Fishing


The interior region is the largest region in Alaska. There are so many rivers in this region that you cannot tell where the rivers begin and end. Wide river valleys and flat lowlands is what consume a lot of this region. In the winter the lakes freeze and provide fishermen with a chance to do some ice fishing.

Alaska’s largest river systems, and the longest rivers, are located in this region. The rivers weave and wind their way around the whole region. Whether they are going through canyons or flats, they are prominent in the interior region. It is close to impossible to tell one river from another because there are an abundance of rivers that run through each other in the interior region.

The interior region is home to 37 freshwater and brackishwater fish species. Because of the cold water temperature, these fish live long, but grow very slow. Some of the fish species thst you can find in this region are:

  • Arctic grayling
  • Coho salmon
  • Sockeye salmon
  • Chinook salmon
  • Dolly Varden
  • Burbot
  • Trout and more

There are so many reasons to fish in Alaska. The state is so big that there are so many opportunities to be able fish in different environments. Whether you are able to drive, fly, or take a boat, you will always be able to get to a fabulous fishing spot. Not only do you get the enjoyment of fishing, but being able to have a fabulous view year round is what makes fishing in Alaska so worth the while.

Alaska Fishing

Fishing Diversity in Alaska

Salmon, rockfish, halibut, and bass are some of the types of fish that are fished every year and every day in Alaska.  Fishing in Alaska provides the angler an abundance of options that are available and newer species of fish and other marine life are discovered frequently.  Because Alaska is as deep as it is wide there are many possibilities within Alaska that make it fisherman’s haven.  With miles upon miles of coastline and local rivers and banks that house various fish species, anglers will certainly not be at a loss for fishing.

Fishing is broken down into several categories: commercial, sport, personal, and subsistence, to name a few.  It makes no difference what kind of fishing anglers decide to take advantage of, it is recreation that dates back to our ancestors and it is an activity that provides fellowship, entertainment, and commerce all at once.

The Flavors of Fishing

There is no doubt that fishing provides several benefits to local communities, but the biggest benefit is the one bellies feel after a nice meal.  With so much salmon, halibut, and crab available, Alaskans and guests dine on the freshest, most pure seafood in the country.  Each of the fish that Alaska has to offer provide different flavors and profiles that are unique to each other.  Because fishing in Alaska nets some of the world’s freshest seafood, anglers have an oasis of flavor in their own back yard.

This is why Alaska is a major hub of subsistence fishing and sport fishing.  Though both are regulated so anglers can do it safely, these types of fishing bring in a large portion of the economic and environmental growth for Alaska.  In some ways, fishing is encouraged so as to develop the economic health of the state.  Fishing in Alaska is responsible for approximately 90,000 jobs and billions of dollars in revenue.  Whether a resident or visitor fishing in Alaska is adventurous and benefits the state and the angler.

As far as travel destinations are concerned, Alaska boasts a number of fishing tours that allow those interested a chance to fish out in deeper waters for fish and other marine life that is harder to find in rivers, reservoirs, or streams.  Fishing is so prevalent and deep in Alaska that anglers from all over the world to fish here.

Before fishing for any reason, it is important to properly attain a fishing license or permit. The money that is spent on these go to help support the conservation of fish and wildlife in Alaska. The more conservation the better, especially where biodiversity is a driving force in the area. Depending on what kind of fishing is happening will determine what kind of license or permit is needed.  After obtaining a proper license, all that there is left to do is enjoy the fishing, wherever that may be.  Fishers of all types can benefit from expert fishing reports.  Being educated on these reports will help a fisher have a better chance at success than one who does not.  While blind fishing is allowed throughout Alaska, it never hurts to have a source of assistance.