When Is The Best Time To Go Fishing In Alaska?
Peak Fishing Season
Peak fishing season out of Homer, Alaska is May – September. The weather tends to be most predictable during the summer months, which allows us flexibility in traveling to a variety of fishing grounds. As we progress towards the end of August and into September winds tend to come up with the upcoming winter season. We are still out fishing, but we do on occasion have weather days this time of year. We always keep a boat in the water and fish year round for king salmon and crab during the winter months.
Fishing Season By Month
May is really the kickoff for our peak fishing season! All our boats are in the water at this point and we are gearing up for a full summer season of fishing. In May, you can expect to catch king salmon, halibut and rockfish. Weather is usually starting to warm up and predictably calmer than fall/winter months. There is plenty of beautiful scenery in addition to the fishing. It is not uncommon to see whales, puffins, eagles, sea otters, seals and sea lions while cruising to the fishing grounds.
June is the start of peak summer fishing in Homer, Alaska. King salmon, halibut and rockfish are the primary targeted species. An occasional pink or chum salmon might come up starting mid June. Pink salmon are actually excellent table fare when prepared fresh or smoked, they don’t hold up well to being frozen. Whales are a common sighting in June and are often playful this time of year.
July is prime time for fishing and weather, it is always our first month to fully book year after year. Lingcod opens July 1 and silvers usually start running in mid July to add to the mix of what is being caught. We are still catching kings, halibut and rockfish this time of year.
August is a great time to come fishing in Homer. The silvers will run through August and into early September. Halibut are plentiful as well as king salmon and rockfish this time of year. Weather can start to come into play by mid/end August. The crowds in town start to thin mid to end August, so if you’re looking for a more mellow time to fish in Alaska, this is it. Seasonal shops usually close by the latest Labor Day weekend.
Fishing is still strong in September, however we do have to contend with the weather at this time of year. If possible, try to plan your fishing trip in the beginning part of your time in Homer so if the weather does become an issue we have some wiggle room to work you into the schedule on another day.
Fishing Season By Fish Species
Halibut Fishing Season
Halibut season is February 1 – December 31. The month of January is closed to allow halibut time to spawn. Although the fishing season is open we don’t start targeting halibut until April. Halibut are migratory fish and stay further offshore and in much deeper waters during the spawning season. Winter weather can be a bit unpredictable here and oftentimes in the early part of the year it is just a bit too difficult to get out far enough for a successful halibut trip.
With all that being said, the best, most predictable time to catch halibut in Homer is May – September.
Salmon Fishing Season
Here in Homer, Alaska we catch king salmon year round! Kings (Chinook) are the largest species of salmon, they run up rivers April – July, but are found year round in the saltwater around Homer.
Silvers (Coho) begin to run mid July into early September and are the most aggressive salmon species.
Chums (Dog) are the second largest species of salmon, and typically run mid June – August.
Reds (Sockeye) are uncommon to catch in saltwater because their diet is mainly plankton. They run typically June – July.
Pinks (Humpy) are the smallest and most plentiful of the salmons, delicious when prepared freshly caught and a wonderful smoked fish. They generally run from the middle of June – August.
Lingcod Fishing Season
The season opener for lingcod is July 1.
Rockfish Fishing Season
Rockfish season is open year round with the peak being May – August.
Crabbing season opens October 1 and runs through February or March. Regulations are determined closer to the crabbing season.
We offer winter king salmon fishing and crabbing trips throughout the fall and winter!