Catch limits for Coho salmon went up mid- season in the Pasagshak River drainage after ADF&G counted more than 6,200 silvers in the area: that’s more than five times the escapement goal set by managers.
Tyler Polum, sport fishing area manager for Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s Kodiak office, says that it’s not typical to adjust the bag rate mid-season, but a relatively new tool for the local ADF&G office has changed the dynamic.
“We actually use a drone to count silvers in the lake in addition to other rivers but since there’s no weir, in the past we’ve just counted those fish by foot service when they’re spawning… so like in end of October and into November and that’s what this escapement goal is based on is those late season counts. But now that we can use the drone count fish in-season we can actually do some in-season management versus having to wait to the end of the season to know how good the run was,” Polum said.
The lake he’s referring to is Lake Rose Tead, which drains into Ugak Bay. According to Polum, two past state records for silver salmon have been made there, both around 20 pounds. While chances of catching a record breaking 26-plus pound silver salmon aren’t high, chances of catching silvers in the lake are excellent.
“Most of the good fishing will be in the lake, like fishing from a boat or a raft or a float tube is really the best,” Polum said.
According to Polum, the season still has some life left in it yet.
“I think folks can expect a couple of weeks of good fishing yet, and that’s kind of kind of promising after how hot and dry it’s been the last four or five years. I think this year has been- as far as people being able to take get to the fish and have good fishing- predictably, I think this has been one of the best silver seasons we’ve had in the last five years,” Polum said.
For those looking for a silver salmon fishing experience closer to town, or to fish without a raft, Polum also recommends Pillar Creek and the Buskin River.