Fly anglers were geared up and ready to charge out for the king opener on June 1. Rods were pulled out and dusted off, reels checked, leaders replaced and king flies at the ready ........and then we got 1 1/2" of rain on May 31st and Gastineau Channel turned into chocolate milk. And since then it has continued to rain which hasn't given the channel a chance to flush itself out and clear up. We heard reports of boats trolling in Fritz Cove picking up kings so they are in the area which is good news.
The weather forecast this weekend looks drier which will be a big improvement. Once Gastineau Channel and Fish Creek clear up a bit it will be time to give the kings a go. And keep in mind that last year the king opener wasn't until June 15th so we are getting bonus days this year.
Lena Cove is one part of the terminal area that isn't impacted by the muddy water conditions. If you want to get out sooner rather than later, Lena is your best king bet. So far it has been pretty quiet but we all know that can change with one tide swing. Fishing the low end of the tide at Lena is most productive and walking straight out from the picnic shelters is a good place to start. Auke Creek is another spot to give a go. It doesn't have totally clear water conditions, but it is much more fishable than the rest of the channel. It also fishes best on a low tide. We have King Salmon Grab & Go's ready so pick one up on your way out.
Moving on to sockeye fishing, Windfall Creek opened for the season this week but we are guessing no one hiked up there since the Herbert River is raging and Windfall is likely very high as well. On a related note, there was a huge landslide last winter just upstream from the usual sockeye holding water. Looking upstream it came in from the right and pushed trees and other debris all the way across Windfall Creek. It won't impede sockeye going upstream but it may well change the course and holding spots on the lower river right before it enters the Herbert River.
As usual, Windfall is open on Wednesdays and Saturdays for the month of June. This Saturday it "might" be fishable but waiting until next Wednesday is likely not a bad idea. Be open to looking for new places where the sockeye might hold before heading upriver.
Finally, Dolly and cutthroat fishing has been the highlight the past few weeks. As we noted in the last report, DIPAC released their chum fry the last week of May during some huge tides. These big tides pushed those little fish out of the channel pretty quickly and the Dollies have been on the prowl all around Juneau. Most beaches are having some good fry busts. Heading out the road to Lena, Sunshine Cove, or Echo Cove are all good bets for sea run Dollies and cutts.
The weather is looking better so plan to get out there this weekend!