Alaska Outdoor Supersite: Alaska outdoor information
Home
Site Map
Directory -- Businesses serving the Alaska outdoors industry
Areas -- Information about Alaska outdoor areas
Forum
Alaska outdoor activities
News and tips about the Alaska outdoors
Magazine -- Articles and photos about the Alaska outdoors
Products
Who is OAC?

Alaska fishing: Prince of Wales Island area

Species

Americaís third largest island holds a delightful surprise for any angler who makes the journey to this remarkable location just a little off the beaten path. Known affectionately to the islandsí 6,000 residents as POW, its 2,600 square miles also host good populations of many types of fish and wildlife.

Seas rich with baitfish and plankton set the stage for saltwater charter fishing for all 5 species of Pacific salmon, halibut, Pacific cod, rockfish, lingcod, shrimp, and two types of crab. Freshwater rivers and lakes produce opportunities for that rainbow, cutthroat, and brook trout, as well as steelhead. Alongside runs of returning salmon swim Dolly Varden Char. Even grayling and kokanee are scattered about. In terms of assortment, POW is a smorgasbord for just about everything Southeast Alaska has to offer the angler.  

Geography

POW is distinguished by rising mountains cloaked with towering forests of spruce, pine, hemlock and cedars. Nurtured by near constant moisture, this area of the Tongass National Forest descends into U-shaped valleys with streams, lakes, saltwater straits, and bays.

From rolling hills and to vertical cliffs, this is one the most stunning in Alaska and home to a variety of wildlife. Sitka deer and a large population of black bear share the land with mink, wolves, and even the occasional moose. Marine mammals include seals, sea lions, sea otters, and migratory whales. Totem poles of the islandís Hadia indians reach into the skies along with eagles and thousands of migratory birds. It is an island roughly 135 miles long by 45 miles wide, just across Chatham strait from Ketchikan.

Teeming with life and breathtaking in scenery, it is fringed by almost 1,000 miles of coastline that lies near the beginning of Alaskaís part of the famed Inside Passage.

Best saltwater fishing times in the Prince of Wales area (ADF&G data)

Species

Availability

Peak

king salmon

year round

May through July

coho salmon

June through October

July through September

sockeye salmon

June through August

June through August

chum salmon

June through September

July and August

pink salmon

June through August

July and August

Dolly Varden Char

year round

June and July

halibut

year round

June through September

rockfish

year round

June through September

lingcod

year round

year round

Best freshwater fishing times in the Prince of Wales area (ADF&G data)

Species

Availability

Peak

king salmon

May through August

July

coho salmon

June through November

August and September

sockeye salmon

June through August

July through August

chum salmon

July through October

August

pink salmon

July through October

July through September

Dolly Varden Char

year round

July through October

steelhead trout

all months except July

April and May
November and December

rainbow trout

year round

May through June

cutthroat trout

year round

May through June

brook trout

year round

July through September

grayling

year round

year round

kokanee

year round

May and June
September and October

Transportation

Click for Craig, Alaska Forecast

 

There are only two ways to get to POW: airplane and ferry. Air travelers  traditionally connect from either Anchorage or Seattle and fly into Ketchikan, and then from there link by float plane or ferry to specific locations on the island. Highway travelers use the Alaska Marine Highway and disembark at Hollis on POW. Car rental agencies are available in Craig, and in Ketchikan. Local ferry service is also provided by the Inter-Island ferry. Summer is always busy anywhere in Alaska including POW, and advance reservations are strongly advised

Weather

The climate of POW is that of high latitude rain forest. Weather changes quickly especially during the spring and fall when temperatures range from the mid 30ís to the mid 60ís. Summer conditions are generally more stable and the temperatures range from the mid 40ís to the mid 70ís.

Rain is always a factor and the island receives over 100 inches per year. Travelers are always advised to dress in layers and have raingear at their side.

Above text by Bernard Rosenberg, author of Fishing Alaska on a Budget


 

 
Prince of Wales Area Sponsors

http://www.lemirecharters.com/

Log Cabin Resort and RV Park

See more
directory listings
 

Destination Information Resources

The POW Chamber of Commerce has an informative site that you will find helpful. Inter-Island Ferry and the Alaska Marine Highway also maintain individual websites.

Current fishing report from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (updated regularly during the summer months)

Prince of Wales Island Fishing Report

Alaska Fishing Forum (active forums with over 1,000 active members)

Useful books and videos relevant to Prince of Wales fishing

How to Catch Trophy Halibut
Sportfishing Alaska
Alaska's Fish
Underwater Secrets of Catching Halibut, Rockfish & Lingcod
The Milepost
Fishing Alaska on Dollar$ a Day

Links

Alaska Department of Fish and Game Prince of Wales Area description
Prince of Wales Online