Ketchikan Salmon Fishing Reports 2018 – Next Report for 2019
A look back and a look forward at fishing outcomes in Southeast Alaska.
2018 Summary: Unfortunately this did not turn into the banner year that was expected. Ketchikan fisheries are well maintained and strictly managed by the State of Alaska. For the first time in memory, the Annual King Salmon Derby was canceled due to low returns. Commercial fisherman fared relatively well with their ability to travel long distances. Sport fisherman, however, found another challenging year for those not willing to put in the time. Southeast Alaska remains an incredibly rich and robust fishery. However, it is simply not as easy as it used to be to come home with trophy fish. Pinks and cohos are the low hanging fruit, and we can just about always get our limit in July and August. For the trophy kings though, you will need to commit yourself to more work in terms of distance from town and time with gear in the water.
2017 Summary: This was a down year with unusually low returns across the board. Many salmon species have biannual patterns, which would suggest a dramatic turnaround for 2018. However, like most projections, they are not precise and are based on an ever-changing environment.
The below chart shows the average price per pound for each species of salmon found in Southeast Alaska. The prices are negatively correlated to the overall catch. For example – in 2017 the overall pink numbers were down, which led to an increase in the price per pound. This is why the pink price shot up to 0.42 cents per pound. This is an incredible price for pinks, but unfortunately, the charter fisherman could not catch many. The chart gives you a good idea of the historical numbers for Ketchikan’s commercial fisheries.
Source: Undercurrent News
2019 Fishing Season Projection For Ketchikan, Alaska
2019 Projection: For the 2019 fishing season, king salmon will still have some restrictions. However, with the Rosemary June being a fast and nimble boat, we will be able to get to areas where you are allowed to keep kings and where the salmon aren’t as sparse. Pink salmon should be quite stellar this year. And the silver salmon fishing, like usual, should be good enough to fill my freezer. Halibut, rockfish, and lingcod fishing should be world class, keeping Ketchikan on the list as a top fishing destination.