Alaska King Salmon Fishing in Sitka
Salmon fishing for kings is “top dog” around here! According to the Alaska Dept of Fish and Game, Sitka is the home of Alaska’s largest recreational marine king salmon fishery. If you like to catch big King Salmon, join us! No one can promise a king salmon, of course, but the odds are good at the right time of year. We know where they are and how to target the kings from years of experience.
Silver (coho) salmon are great sport and numerous in our part of Alaska. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game says that “Sitka is … home to one of Alaska’s largest recreational marine Coho salmon fisheries.” If you join us at Sitka between mid-June and September, you’ll be a believer, too: our fishermen catch a lot of them.
Know Your Alaska Salmon and Halibut!
Sitka offers some of the best Salmon fishing in the world, where catch rates for Chinook (King) and Coho (Silver) salmon are three times higher than anywhere else in the region.
Fish headed from the ocean for spawning systems farther south stop in Sitka Sound to rest, rejuvenate, and continue fattening up before continuing on their way. Once Salmon mature, they move out to sea to begin their 2-8 year adult growth cycle; where they feed on small fish, krill and crustaceans. During this period they increase in body mass to prepare for the trip to spawning grounds, and the end of the Pacific Salmon life cycle. Salmon’s energetic lifestyle results in the impressive firm meat-to-bone ratio that makes it one of the easiest fish to prepare. They return to freshwater in the Spring and Summer. During this time, Salmon are fat and strong, snacking on herring and needlefish and are highly active. King Salmon generally return from the sea every 3-5 years, and Silvers return every 2-3 years, contributing to the variations in size and fat composition.
Not only does Wild Salmon taste better, but it is also lower in calories and healthier, with saturated fat ratio is about 1/5 of farm -raised Salmon. Levels of Iron, Calcium, and Zinc are much higher.
Our Fishing Seasons
King Salmon – May through late August
Silver Salmon – Mid-June through Mid-September
Halibut – May through mid-September
Beginning as early as April, King Salmon await anglers in Sitka. As with all Salmon in our area, King Salmon are wild (not fishery-hatched,) which contributes to a strong, tasty and well-sized fish. Kings average around 20-30 lbs., but can grow to nearly 100 lbs under the right conditions. Kings return to spawn after 3-5 years at sea, so growth before the final spawning stage of life can be exceptional! Later run fish tend to be larger; although less abundant; but all Kings above regulation size are BIG FISH!
King Salmon are the highest in fat among all Salmon species, which helps it to retain a moist firm texture and buttery flavor when seared, broiled or grilled. Leave the skin on your salmon to help retain Omega-3, flavor and moisture. Cover with parsley, shallots and lemon slices for a beautiful baked dish, or rub it with Olive Oil, season with Parsley, Basil, Kosher Salt and Garlic Powder, and grill it over medium heat for about 5 minutes per side for a fast, succulent main dish.
“Action” best describes fishing for Sitka Coho/Silver Salmon! Abundant in our areas, they make for a fantastic fishing adventure. Hungry and well-grown while on their way to spawning grounds, Coho are acrobatic and agile, and quick to bite; often making for great non-stop fishing fun! They range between 6 -15 lbs, and often keep our guests busy reeling and casting at a higher pace than other species. Coho peak in summer, but appear as early as Mid-June.
A Silver Salmon is as good as gold in the kitchen: it is a mild lower-fat, firm fish with beautiful red orange meat. It cooks quickly, and is well-suited for lightly breaded saute’, pan frying, baking and poaching. Coho’s subtle flavor also accepts seasonings nicely. Try sprinkling a little Dill into the pan while poaching!
It’s all waiting for you, here in Sitka! We hope you’ll join us soon to enjoy an amazing experience on the water, and fill the freezer while you’re here.