Salmon Fishing In Alaska

Where is Alaska?

Alaska is by far the largest United State by area, on the northwest extremity of the country’s west coast. To the north are the Chukchi and Beaufort seas of the Arctic Ocean, while the Pacific Ocean lies to the south and southwest. 

Alaska boasts some of the best salmon fishing in the world, with an abundance of all five types of wild salmon and scenery that is hard to beat. The yearly salmon run takes place between May and September, and you will need a permit to partake, plus a special license to fish for prized Kings. 

Why is Alaska known as the salmon mecca of the world?

Freshwater streams and estuaries provide important habitat for many salmon species. They feed on terrestrial and aquatic insects, amphipods, and other crustaceans while young, and primarily on other fish when older. Eggs are laid in deeper water with larger gravel, and need cool water and good water flow (to supply oxygen) to the developing embryos.

The waters of Alaska are not only pristine, they are also gin – clear, aqua – blue. Each summer, salmon begin their journey, overcoming great distances to get back to the rivers where they were spawned. With more coastline than the whole of the US and millions of lakes, Alaska brings breathtaking scenery while fighting 5 species of Pacific Salmon : King, Sockeye, Silver, Chum and Pink Salmon. 

Salmon runs occur each year between May and October. There is a good chance of catching Salmon in Alaska for a good part of the year.  If you are an angler and you are addicted to the food of Salmon. You have to go to Alaska and join.

Sockeye Salmon 

They are the most numerous of the salmon and luckily they are the most delicious of all the Pacific species. Sockeye average  6 to 8 pound, occasionally reaching up to 15 pound. Fly fishing for Sockeye is a big thing, and many passionate anglers come to Alaska for the ultimate face – off.  The peak season for fishing is June and July. They can be cooked fresh, smoked, canned, grilled or baked. All makes their meat taste so good. 

Chum Salmon 

These fish migrate and hold in large groups. Chum Salmon are easily caught while wading shallow water. Some people call it “Dog Salmon” because this fish is best described as the underdog of the Salmon species. Chum make their way upstream to spawn every year, usually between May and August. So the best season for chum salmon fishing : late June through July. Coastal fishing for Chum in Alaska is superb.

King Salmon 

Or anglers call it “Salmon Chinook”. King Salmon Alaska are the largest of the Pacific Salmon, Kings are fished most effectively with spinning or casting tackle, Kenai River is famous for its Salmon. Peak season generally runs from May to August.

If Chinook is your primary target, you have to go to the deepest parts of the rivers. The best time to go fishing King Salmon Alaska is often within 2 hours of a tidal change. 

Pink Salmon

Pink salmon are the smallest kind of Pacific Salmon, average 3 – 5 pound.

When they live in the ocean, Alaska Pink salmon have a bright silver appearance, when they return to the rivers to spawn, however, they change to a pale grey color with yellow – white bellies. Cast your line in the right place at the right time, you will see their performance on the waters. One of the most unique attributes of Pink Salmon is their two – year life cycle. That you should go after Pink Salmon in even – numbered years. 

Pink Salmon are very good to eat but less delicacy than Chinook and Coho meat.

Silver Salmon 

Salmon Coho average 7 – 9 pounds. They run in shallow water with a run strong and leap high in the air when hooked.  It makes its own reputation. They are the strongest acrobats among  Alaska Salmon. This fish tastes great fresh or smoked. 

The best spots for Salmon fishing in Alaska

Kenai river

This is one of the best places to catch a monster King Salmon Alaska.  It’s one of the world’s few rivers where anglers can find all 5 Pacific Salmon species.

Lower Kenai is big and wide, where holds the world record for King Salmon at 97 lbs. In August, The Kenai River Classic is held every year to raise for fisheries conservation. There are many eager anglers who go to Lower for some serious salmon fishing.

Especially, in July it is the season of Sockeye Salmon and in August, September and October , there are plenty of Silvers.

Arguably Alaska’s most popular sport fishing destination for King salmon Alaska. From Anchorage, the River is just 3,5 hours for driving. 

Kasilof River

The Kasilof River, Beginning at Tustumena Lake and just 15 minutes south of the Kenai or people call it by another name “ Little Brother of the Kenai”. This river is a home of Kings, Sockeye and Silvers. Compared to Kenai, it is harder to get here. This place is special because of the remote waters and scenic drifts. The lower end of the river is the most popular for salmon fishing. And Silvers show up more in the upper.  This is a drift – only river, so you use boats thanks to strong currents. From Anchorage, it takes about 3,5 hours. 

Homer Alaska

Hailed as the “halibut capital of the world,” Homer is really famous as a salmon fishing Alaska destination as well. Don’t miss an annual winter king tournament in Homer. If you go fishing in Kachemak Bay, you also have chances to see whales. It is a little far, about 6,5 hours from Anchorage. 

Seward Alaska

Just 2,5 hours from Anchorage, huge mountains and glaciers in the background around you when you go fishing in Sewed. Seward is well – known for its Silver Salmon Fishing Alaska in July and August. The annual Silver Salmon Derby in August always attracts thousands of fishermen vying for the trophy. From June to August, you can catch Kings when they are at their peaks.  One of the interesting in Seward is shore fishing. 


Like the Kenai, Various rivers here offer all five species of salmon , just smaller sizes. 2 Hours from Anchorage. 


It is a spot for salmon and located in the southeast. You can go fishing in lakes, streams or creeks. Freshwater fishing here offers Coho, Pink, and Sockeye.  So it is known as the Salmon Capital of the World. This area has strong ocean currents and pristine ecosystems. It is not surprising when you see a brown bear, they are your opponents in a battle to conquer salmon. 

Kodiak Island

If you want to go further or enjoy a fishing trip in a quiet place. The Kodiak Archipelago is your great destination.