How to Fish for Salmon in Alaska

How to Fish for Salmon in Alaska
Salmon fishing is one of the principal outdoor recreational activities throughout Alaska, and particularly in the southeastern region catering to angler travelers. The Alaska angler can expect to catch mighty chinook (king) salmon, as well as smaller species including pink, coho and sockeye. Seasons and regulations vary, but the basic techniques are similar. Follow these steps to pull a delicious salmon from the frigid Alaskan waters.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Fishing rod and reel spooled with 20-pound line
  • Bait
  • Lures
  • Tackle
  • Alaska fishing license
  • Salmon permit stamp
Step 1
Get a guide to show you the best areas for the region you'll be visiting. An ancient expression holds that 10 percent of anglers catch 90 percent of the fish. In Alaska, even if you are among that successful 10 percent, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game conducted a study showing that salmon anglers working with guides could expect to catch fish within hours, while a visitor working the water alone might need 40 hours.
Step 2
Get out on the water by boat or kayak. You can cover a much greater area in less time and reach hot spots where the big salmon lurk.
Step 3
Troll silver spoons, spinners or hooks rigged with salmon roe (eggs, when legal) off the stern of the boat.
Step 4
Go bottom-fishing with pink or chartreuse (yellow-green) jigs, casting into pools and eddies where big salmon rest and wait for a meal to pass by. Twitch your rod tip to make the jig bounce off the bottom.
Step 5
Flip lures upstream from a boat or the shoreline, allowing the bait to drift past your position as you point the rod tip toward your moving line.
Step 6
Try fly-fishing when salmon are surface-feeding in the spring. The technique of dropping a fly in the middle of a still pool is challenging and exciting to watch when a salmon rises to the surface and throws a spray of water into the air.

Article Written By James Clark

James Clark began his career in 1985. He has written about electronics, appliance repair and outdoor topics for a variety of publications and websites. He has more than four years of experience in appliance and electrical repairs. Clark holds a bachelor's degree in political science.

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