Kodiak Information Index:
| King Salmon
| Red Salmon | Pink
Salmon | Silver Salmon |
Peak Run June 1 - July 10
Best Bait or Lure: Spoons, spinners, flies, eggs, herring.
King salmon fishing on the Karluk and Red (Ayakulik) Rivers is excellent. Both of these rivers are on the southwest end of Kodiak Island, about 1 hour from Kodiak. Average weight is 20 to 25 pounds. Timing is important, by June 1 only 5% (less than 1,000) of the run has entered the river. About 50% of the run by June 15, with over 90% of the run upriver by July 1. On the Karluk fishermen most commonly fish from 3 starting points: the lagoon and first mile of the river, the Portage or Karluk Lake. The Lagoon and lower river are good during June. The Portage is located about 15 miles upstream from the lagoon and 10 miles below the lake. A 2 mile hiking trail from the head of Larsen Bay will also take you to Portage. Fishing is best at Portage from June 15 through July 10. Karluk Lake is accessible by float plane. Fishermen generally float down the river, fishing along the way. The Karluk river is about 25 miles long and takes 18 hours to float, not allowing for time to fish or camp. On the Red River most fish just below the confluence of the Red and Ayakulik Rivers, near Bear Creek. This area is accessible by float plane. Fishermen either fish and camp at the landing sites or float downstream and fish along the way. The run timing is the same as Karluk.
Regulations and Restrictions
The bag and possession limit on the Karluk and Ayakulik over 20 inches, is 3 kings, only 2 of which may be over 28 inches. 10 kings under 20 inches may be in possession.
The majority of the land along the Red River is located on the Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge, and there are public easements near the ocean for aircraft pickup. No special permits are needed to float the river or camp on most of the surrounding land. The land surrounding the Karluk River is completely owned by 2 native corporations, and land use fees are required. The Karluk Village own land surrounding most of the lagoon and lower river. Koniag owns most of the land surrounding the lake and upper river.
Koniag Native Association
Karluk River/Larsen Bay - Anchorage - 907-561-2668
Karluk Tribal Council - Karluk - 907-241-2218
Red Salmon (Sockeye)
Peak Run June 10 - August 1
Best Bait or Lure: Flies.
Reds are probably the best tasting salmon available and once hooked are good fighters. Reds however do not bite readily and only occasionally take lures. The best results occur when these fish can be seen and a fly is repeatedly drifted past their heads. Red salmon average 4 and 7 pounds, over 10 pounds is rare.
Reds are mostly associated with a lake. They migrate into the lake via an outlet river, holding in the lake as they ripen, and then spawn along the lake shores and tributary streams. Fishing success is best when reds are migrating through a river into a lake. On the road system Buskin, Pasagshak and Saltery offer the best opportunities. An average of about 10,000 are counted through the Buskin River weir annually. Run begins June 1, reach 50% mark by June 25th and reach 90% by August 1st. Pasagshak and Saltery runs are considerably later. The Saltery run is much larger, averaging 30,000 fish. The road to Saltery Cove is very poor and 4-wheel drive vehicles are necessary. Fish are abundant by July 1 and peaks the last week of July. There are many large red runs off the road. Karluk, Red River, Uganik, Fraser, Upper Station and Litnik are a few.
Pink Salmon (Humpy)
Silver Salmon (Coho)
Catch, Possession and Size Limits
Compiled from "Kodiak Area Sport Fishing Guide"
1999 - 2009 Kodiak Island Internet Directory.