With the success of hatcheries and
the return of wild salmon stocks, Prince William Sound is boiling with salmon
for a good portion of the summer season. Silvers, chums, pinks, and sockeye are
all relatively easy to find when the time is right. Kings can also be found by
Silver salmon are perhaps the most sought after
salmon species and for good reason. Silvers are voracious feeders, good
fighters, excellent on the table, and are usually present in great numbers.
The fishing usually starts in
late June or early July, when the fish show up in the Gulf and the outer Sound.
Excellent fishing may continue into late September, or even October. My strategy usually employs
targeting silvers as a bonus when halibut trips happily end early, and then
targeting them exclusively as their numbers grow and they become available
closer to port. Silver fishing is often a possibility when the storms of autumn
begin to prohibit the longer runs to the halibut grounds. Whittier is usually
known for experiencing a later run of silvers, but I have had good fishing from
July through September, depending on the timing and health of hatchery runs.
Although we don't have returning
kings in Prince William Sound, "feeders" are available to those hardy enough to
put time in, and as an occasional bonus to those seeking other species of
Feeder kings are basically fish in a range of
younger year classes which are out there "feeding" and growing. This does not
mean they are small however. We've caught fish to 40 pounds! These fish are
generally not found in great numbers, but on occasion, the fishing can be
exciting. Typically when in search of feeder kings we employ downriggers and
other trolling methods. Although king fishing tends to be a slower fishery,
the reward of catching one of these elusive fish outweighs the effort for
Unlike the kings, pink salmon usually are
easily found. The hatcheries in Prince William Sound have established fantastic
runs of pinks. They are usually present in the millions, and it isn't uncommon
to see the water boil with them.. Willing anglers usually won't have a problem
catching them when in season.
Chum and Sockeye salmon
are also available in good numbers (generally June and early July) for those who are willing to make special
trips for them.