By Cory Luoma with Fly Out Travel
Prince of Wales Island is the 4th largest island in the United States. The island boasts more than 80 streams with a documented steelhead run. Prince of Wales doesn’t receive a huge number of steelhead, but they are all native fish. Many of the rivers and streams are remote with no trails to them and only a few roads that access their banks.
There are two runs of steelhead on the island. The first comes in late fall and into December, producing only a small number of fish. The weather is usually very poor during this time, leaving most of these fish untouched. The spring run, on the other hand, offers willing anglers a great opportunity to catch wild Alaska steelhead in an intimate setting.
You will not find huge steelhead on Prince of Wales Island. Anglers come here for the small waters, solitude and overall lack of pressure.
Prince of Wales Island Steelhead Facts:
- There are no rainbow trout in the rivers and streams of Prince of Wales Island, so you can rest assured your steelhead, no matter how darkly colored, is indeed a steelhead.
- All POW steelhead are native fish; there are no stocked rivers in Alaska.
- Hens build their redds (nests) in open sunny spots on gravel beds. After laying her eggs and burying them, the hen will often stay and guard her nest. In the spirit of good stewardship and preserving the health of POW and all of Alaska’s native steelhead runs, please consider leaving these hens alone.
- There are plenty of of self-guided options to fish Prince of Wales Island with a house and vehicle rental. If you are less-inclined for DIY fishing and want to take a fast track to great steelhead fishing, Alaska’s Boardwalk Lodge in Thorne Bay offers all-inclusive steelhead packages fishing the best of Prince of Wales Island.