Jackpot Derby Update: July 31
The Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby has seen yet another change in leaders, as Gene Jones of Bellevue, Iowa landed a 236.2-pound flatfish on July 25.
Jones was fishing with Central Charters and Captain David Bayes aboard the F/V Grand Illusion. He ousts former leader, James Jell of Moscow, Idaho with his catch that bested Jell’s by a respectable 38 pounds.
New July Tagged Fish
Geri Eskelson of Anchor Point, caught a tagged fish on July 27 while fishing on a private boat.
Sara Ford of Kinta, Okla., caught a tagged fish on July 28 while fishing with Tim Berg’s Alaskan Fishing Adventures.
Shane Michael of Sterling also caught a tagged fish on July 28. He was fishing from a private boat.
In other fishing news …
The youth-only fishing will be held this Saturday, Aug. 3, from 12:01 a.m. to midnight at the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon.
A portion of the fishing area will be set aside for only kids 15 and younger to fish. Fish and Game staff will be available from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. to help young anglers set up fishing gear and fish for silver salmon returning to the lagoon.
Kenai kings off-limits
The Kenai River closed to king salmon fishing on Sunday, July 28, in an effort to conserve late-run king salmon escapement.
Anglers are advised that this closure prohibits all sport fishing for king salmon, including catch-and-release fishing. King salmon may not be retained or possessed, and any king salmon caught while fishing for other species may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately.
As directed by the Kenai River Late-Run King Salmon Management Plan, if, from July 20 through July 31, the projected in-river return of Kenai River late-run king salmon is less than 40,000 fish, and the in-river sport fishery harvest is projected to result in an escapement below 15,000 king salmon, the department may restrict the sport fisheries in the Kenai River.
The department’s assessment programs indicate that the Kenai River late-run escapement will not achieve the sustainable escapement goal of 15,000-30,000 fish. Based on this information, closure of the sport fishery is needed.
The prohibition on the use of bait/scent during July remains in effect.
• Halibut fishing is considered fair to good, with anglers reporting success using herring or squid with circle hooks. Sampled fish landed in the Homer Harbor over the past week averaged 14.8 lbs.
• Trolling for feeder king salmon is reported as fair off Bluff Point and Point Pogibshi.
• Silver, chum and pink salmon catches have been reported off Point Pogibshi and Flat Island.
• A few silver salmon have been caught in the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon, but fishing is slow.
• A high number of pink salmon are mixed with a low number of sockeye salmon in Tutka Bay Lagoon.
• Lingcod season is open through Dec. 31., with bag and possession limits at two fish. The minimum legal size is 35 inches. Lingcod fishing is reportedly good around Elizabeth and Chugach Islands.
• The China Poot personal-use dip fishery is open to Alaska residents through Aug. 7. No permit is required. Bag and possession limits are six sockeye per person, per day. Only sockeye salmon may be retained. Recent sockeye catches have been reported as fair-to-good.
• The lower portions of the Anchor and Ninilchik rivers, along with Stariski and Deep creeks, are open to sport fishing. Bait and treble hooks may be used.
• A few silver salmon have reportedly been caught in the Anchor River. Try fishing early in the morning or at the mouth of the stream during the incoming tide.
• Upstream areas open Aug. 1 for Dolly Varden and steelhead/rainbow trout. Expect poor-to-fair fishing for pink salmon and Dolly Varden in these streams. Beads, small spinner and streamer flies are generally effective for catching Dolly Varden.
• Large numbers of chum salmon, along with lower numbers of pinks, are entering streams on the south side of Kachemak Bay. Humpy Creek and the Seldovia River are popular streams to fish for chum and pink salmon.
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