Alaska Fishing: King (Chinook) SalmonThe chinook or king salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) is the largest – and least abundant – of Pacific salmon. Alaska King salmon fishing is exciting because of the two to three years at sea and average about 24 pounds each.
A chinook salmon has small black spots on the back, dorsal fin, and tail fin. The King is by far the hardest fighting fish that you will catch in freshwater, 45 minute battles are not uncommon. Alaska King Salmon start running up the Nushagak river around mid June, and up our coastal river around July 1st. The Alaska king salmon fishing remains good until the end of July. The Nushagak run is one of the most prolific in Alaska with an escapement averaging about 80,000 fish per year. It is a large river with many braided sections. Although fly fishing in Alaska is difficult in bigger parts of the river, the smaller braided areas can produce great fly fishing for these hard fighting beasts. This fishery is probably the best bait fishing for King Salmon in Alaska. 20-30 fish days are not uncommon!
Theriver is a small coastal stream located in the Togiak National wildlife refuge. Royal Coachman Lodge has one of only 2 permits issued for commercial use of the river. Our angler numbers are limited to just 4 per day during the King Salmon season. This stream is ideal for fly fishing in Alaska and all our fishing is done within 3 miles of the ocean, assuring you will be catching the freshest, meanest kings that Bristol Bay has to offer.
Fly fishing for King Salmon is rarely a numbers game, even in Alaska. There are ways to catch greater numbers of Kings for sure. Spin fishing, Bait or fresh egg sack fishing is no doubt a deadly way to catch King salmon. We at the Royal Coachman Lodge proudly choose not to fish bait on every river except the Nushagak. This allows female Chinook salmon to be returned unharmed into the river, and proceed to her spawning grounds. King salmon runs are the most endangered of all the salmon. This is why we choose fly or spin vs. bait on our rivers.
One of our favorite places to fly fish for King salmon is on the ______ river. This remote water is often one of our guest favorite fisheries of the week, and you will be the only fisherman in the area. Though these kings are a bit further up the river than their coastal brothers. These fish are still a mighty Chinook! They are impressively strong fighters (We do not fish the Kings on their spawning beds.). An added bonus to this river is the sight fishing opportunity that can occur. High catch rates and the biggest kings of the season occur on the _____ river every season!
Come to our Alaska fishing lodge and see why our clients love to fish for King Salmon!