Do you find yourself sitting in the office daydreaming about spending your days out on the crystal blue Alaskan waters with a fishing reel in hand? The good news is that booking an Alaskan vacation isn’t as hard as you think, but it is important to know a few things before you head out to the last frontier.
It’s no secret that Alaska is huge—it’s over 663,000 square miles, larger than all but 18 sovereign nations in the world—which is why it’s so important to know a little about the geography before you plan your fishing trip. Even the vast coastal areas of Alaska aren’t created equal when it comes to fishing.
For fishing enthusiasts looking to catch famed Alaskan saltwater halibut, Chinook salmon, silver salmon, coho salmon, pink salmon, and king salmon, the southeast part of Alaska is the ideal area. Stretching along the western side of British Columbia, Canada, this area also offers plenty of freshwater fishing, where you can find rainbow trout, Dolly Varden trout, and grayling.
Plan for the Peak Season
The peak season for Alaskan fishing is June through August. These three months offer prime opportunities to catch multiple types of saltwater and freshwater fish, including:
- Coho salmon
- Chum salmon
- Pink salmon
- King salmon
- Shrimp, prawns & crab
This time of the year is also when you will get extended daylight hours, with sunrises around 4:00-5:00 am, sunsets around 10:00-11:00 pm, and “civil twilight” hours with enough light outside to extend the day a couple hours longer.
Guided vs Unguided Tours
Another important consideration when planning your trip is whether you plan to do a guided or unguided fishing tour. While there isn’t one right choice here (some of it is entirely up to your personal preferences), guided tours definitely offer some benefits. Having a guide ensures that your time spent out on the water will be in the most beneficial waters, so you won’t spend hours in a place where the fish just aren’t biting. The right guide will also help you find the fishing spots that aren’t overcrowded with tourists, cruise ships and huge fishing excursion crowds that chase the fish away. Plus your guides can help make sure you’re using the latest fishing gear and drive the boat (if you and your friends aren’t exactly experienced sailors).
If fishing isn’t the only reason you want to visit Alaska, there are all-inclusive Alaska fishing trips that provide other activities to keep you busy when you’re not out on the water. Check for options like glacier tours, waterfall tours, opportunities to check out the Northern Lights, whale watching, kayaking, and day trips to check out local wildlife or go hiking and take some incredible photos.