Fishing in Ketchikan Alaska in June
June is a continuation of the prime king season. As spring transitions into summer the king fishing slow between runs. The slowdown can be anywhere from a few days to a week or two. There are always stragglers from the early run along with the first arrivals from the second, so there is no absolute dead time during summer. Salmon fishing in June goes through all phases from cold to unbelievably hot. During slow stretches, it is more important to have a local guide with their finger on the pulse of the fishery. When the fish are running hot, it is easy to look like a pro. It’s the slow periods, between runs, when the true masters perform. There are a lot of average performers who can do a perfectly capable job of finding fish when it’s hot. A local professional is your best bet if your expectations are above average.
Fishing in Ketchikan Alaska in the Summer Months
If you’re planning a fishing adventure in Ketchikan, June is the best month to visit. With its warm waters and mild air temperatures, this is the best king salmon season. The second half of the month, in particular, is prime time for visiting if you’re looking to catch large, prize-worthy salmon. While many fish species are most active during June, it’s an especially good time for king salmon. Before booking a vacation, contact a local Ketchikan guide to find out what equipment you should bring, where you should go if you’re planning to rent your own boat, or which charters you should use if you want an organized trip with an experienced guide. A local can also give you tips about what kind of fish to be on the lookout for in June.
Fishing for King Salmon
The fishing run for salmon begins in May and runs through the end of July. Sometimes you’ll be able to get good king salmon in August, too. However, the best time to fish for salmon, and king salmon in particular, is during late June and early July. King salmon is the largest species of salmon found in Alaska. The average size for an adult is 15-20 pounds. During the warm summer months, it’s not uncommon for this variety of salmon to average 40-50 pounds! If you’re a competitive fisherman, you may already know that there are serious competitions for the largest salmon catches during June. One of the most popular events is the King Salmon Derby, which is hosted annually between May and June in Ketchikan. At the height of the season, people come from all over the world for this popular salmon running that almost guarantees a quality catch, regardless of your skill level. If you want to have a shot at the prize, contact a local Ketchikan guide to find out where the best fishing spots are located.
A local guide will tell you that although many people come to Ketchikan in June searching for Chinook, another equally delicious and plentiful species is silver salmon or coho. The coho salmon run starts around mid-late June and lasts through the early fall. During June, coho average about eight pounds. By the time August arrives, most are approximately 10 pounds. If you’re lucky, a local professional can direct you where to go for larger fish that are closer to 15 pounds. In September, silver salmon average about 14 pounds, and there have been reports of 20-plus pound catches, too!
While June draws fishermen to Ketchikan primarily for salmon runs, you’ll also have a chance to catch halibut at this time of year, too. Halibut gravitate to the warmer, shallower waters that are generally prevalent along the coastline by June. They’re drawn inward to shore by their food supply, which is salmon, cod, herring, and other smaller fish. If you’re planning a fishing expedition through Alaska, be on the lookout for this species all across southeastern Alaska.
Although they don’t steal the limelight like king salmon, rockfish is another species that you can catch in summer. Other than making fantastic fish and chips for any seafood feed, they are unlike seasonal species, and the fishing run for rockfish continues year-round. This is a great excuse to get out on the waters in a typical offseason. Rockfish typically stay in the same general area through adulthood. Rarely do they go beyond a five-mile radius. Rockfish have an average size 3-5 pounds, which means they are quite often a valuable food source for larger fish species, but they can reach up to 20 pounds.
Summer in Alaska is one of the most beautiful times of the year, and it’s also one of the best times to go fishing. June is the best king salmon season, and it’s not uncommon to catch fish that are 30 pounds or more. If you really want to have the best fishing experience, contact a local professional to either take you out on a fishing charter or direct you where to go.
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