People vacation in Alaska for many various reasons . . . from fishing and hunting and sightseeing to wildlife viewing and kayaking, canoeing, rafting, biking, gold mining, photography, birding and so much more.
One consistent request from vacationers is the ability to bring home some fresh Alaska fish . . especially halibut and salmon. That is hardly ever a problem.
Halibut, which sells for $20 per pound or more, are still fairly plentiful in Cook Inlet and the limit is still 2 per person. With the average fish being 20#+ (best eating size), anglers get approximately 10 # of fillets per fish so 20# goes in their box. (By the way, most of our fishing vacation packages include 50# of flight ready packing and processing.)
Alaskan salmon, depending on the season, are also readily available. The most sought after “meat fish” is the
sockeye salmon. With 2 huge runs on the Kenai and Kasilof rivers each season, your box can be filled pretty much any time. When the sockeye run ends in August, the Silver, which is also excellent table fare, can replace the sockeye meat.
Alaskan King Salmon - Chinook - is a great tasting salmon as well, but many anglers are now choosing to use a “catch and release" method. Why? First for most of the season on the Kenai and Kasilof rivers, if an angler catches a King Salmon ans keeps it, they are done fishing or the day. That is, they have reached their limit and can't fish anymore. Why quit fishing when you can release it and continue to catch more? Especially if you can take a great photo or video and if you know you will get your take-home salmon meat through other species. Second, despite the fact that they are still the biggest in the world, the native King Salmon returns throughout Alaska have been getting smaller, with average fish size also getting smaller.
Unless regulations prohibit keeping Kings, the choice will be the fisherman’s. Many guides and outfitters encourage catch and release of these unique fish, and until we see regular upticks in the return trends, conservation conscious anglers think “why not keep this once in a lifetime gene pool healthy?”
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Russell Fishing Company