Prince Of Wales Sportfishing – Craig, Alaska Fishing Reports » silver

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* Revving Up the P.O.W.H.A.!

Posted on January 30th, 2014 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


The POWHA, or the Prince of Wales Hatchery Association, is the salmon hatchery located on the Klawock River near the small town of Klawock on Prince of Wales Island. This hatchery produces an astounding 5 million coho and 300,000 Chinook annually which makes it the largest sport-producing hatchery in the State of Alaska. The POWHA is largely funded by sportfishing interests.

Unlike most hatcheries that are operated by a State or Federal agency the POWHA is a non-profit 401C corporation that derives all of its operational income from state loans, cost recovery, and contributions. A small group of individuals in the Craig/Klawock area work their tails off to keep this hatchery operational every year and the economic impact this one privately-operated hatchery has in Southeast Alaska is astounding.

Here’s some statistics that may surprise you:

-Alaska Department of Fish and Game attributes 30% of all coho’s caught in Southeast Alaska in 2013 to the POWHA

-90% of all the coho caught in the Craig area by both sport and commercial fisherman are from the POWHA

The POWHA had very inconsistent coho returns until the board of directors decided in 2009 to make a change of management and staff. They brought in an experienced hatchery manager with a history of turning hatcheries around and they also implemented a Chinook program which now contributes to an early season king salmon run in the Craig/Klawock area. The huge coho run of 2013 was a direct result of these changes in leadership and hatchery management.

The POWHA needs your help though. State loans and cost recovery only bring in a portion of the income needed to keep the POWHA up and running. Money from derby ticket sales, the yearly Craig/Klawock Salmon Derby banquet, and direct contributions are needed to provide the additional funds necessary to keep the lights on at this vitally important hatchery.

If we want to keep the POWHA operating and continue to see spectacular fishing in the Craig/Klawock area we’ve got to step up. Funds are running short and there’s a chance the POWHA will have to close it’s spillway and quit planting salmon altogether.

We’re going to be asking all of our guests in 2014 to purchase derby tickets that help fund the POWHA. Tickets are $35 per person and there’s a May/June derby andĀ  July/August derby. First place in either derby pays out $2,000, second place $1,000, and third place $500. Your derby ticket also enters you to win the jackpot of $10,000 at the annual Craig/Klawock Salmon Derby raffle at the end of summer. Best of all…you don’t need to be present to win. That jackpot would buy a lot of fishing trips!

It seems like every summer one of our guests catches a king salmon that would qualify for some cashola in the Craig/Klawock Salmon Derby, yet we haven’t done a good job of informing our guests of the derby tickets. Placing in the derby is definitely fun, but the real fun is knowing that your donation will help keep the POWHA operational so you can enjoy excellent fishing in the Craig/Klawock area for years to come.

If you’d like to make a direct donation to the POWHA please call 907-755-2231 or purchase your 2014 derby ticket when you see us this summer. Thanks a bunch everyone and we look forward to seeing you this summer!

Rob Endsley
Prince of Wales Sportfishing
Craig, Alaska Salmon and Halibut Fishing Charters
888-943-4746

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* Closing the Books on an Amazing Season

Posted on August 24th, 2013 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


We were blessed with amazing fishing here in Craig, Alaska right up until the last day of our charter fishing season, which happened to be yesterday. Fat coho’s were eager to bite our cut plug herring in the islands yesterday morning and then we blasted outside of Noyes Island to enjoy flat calm seas, monster coho, and the last of the king salmon run off of the coast. There are some huge silvers cruising the outside of Noyes Island right now!

Here’s Greg Schermann from Carmel, California with the last king salmon of the 2013 charter fishing season at Prince of Wales Sportfishing.

Greg, Mollie, Brent, and Terry enjoyed limits of big silvers, halibut, and sea bass on a blustery day in Craig two days ago.

One of my childhood friends, Mollie Heilesen, joined me with her husband Brent for our final trip of the season and she nabbed this enormous 44″ ling cod. Great job Mollie!

We’ll make our final run to Island Air Express this morning and then it will take about a week to winterize and put everything away here in Craig. I’ll post some final thoughts here in a couple of days, but one’s things for sure…this has been an amazing fishing year in Craig, Alaska. Oh what a summer!

Rob Endsley
Prince of Wales Sportfishing
888-943-4746

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* August 13th, 2012 Craig, Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on August 13th, 2012 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


Silver salmon fishing has been what I would call “decent” since my last report. Some days we get into a good bite and limit out rather quickly and others we have to pick away at them all day long to get limits. The silvers seem to be a pound or two heavier this year and have been a blast on the mooching tackle.

There’s still a few king salmon in the 15 to 20 pound range mixed in with the silvers. Our guests this past week have caught a few on the outside of Noyes Island and also inside the islands while fishing for silvers. The trollers just got an opener for king salmon and apparently they have another 79,000 pounds to catch. We haven’t seen that many kings in close to the beach, but maybe they are getting them offshore. Perhaps we’ll see yet another push of kings before the summer is over??????????

We’ve been catching the usual assortment of bottomfish, including some nice chicken halibut, sea bass, ling cod, and yelloweye rockfish. There’s even a few nice halibut starting to show up in the islands now, which is a pleasent surprise.

We hosted yet another halibut enchilada night down on the pier last night and the good guys from Ram Construction in Bellingham, Washington contributed over $1,000 in cash money to the Craig High School wrestling team. Holy crap guys…you are amazing! All of us thank you so much.

So far this summer our guests and crew have raised approximately $4300 for these hard workin’ kids and we’ll probably host at least one more din-din down on the dock before we give the coaches wife a break. Thanks again Di!

Sorry no photos this week…I lost my little Nikon camera. Ouch!

Rob Endsley
Prince of Wales Sportfishing
Craig, Alaska Salmon and Halibut Fishing Charters
888-943-4746
www.princeofwalessportfishing.com

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* August 4th, 2012 Craig, Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on August 5th, 2012 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


I’m back for a quick August 4th check-in from Craig, Alaska. Silver fishing has been excellent here since my last report and we’re getting limits daily. It’s nice to see some of the silvers moving into the islands now so we can hide from poor ocean conditions when they arise. Our guests have noticed that our silvers seem to be a little bit bigger this season than in years past. Regardless…it’s fun to have great fishing right now!

King salmon fishing is petering out here, but the kings that are out there lately have been on the enormous side. Bill Vernon from Yakima, Washington landed the 46 pound king salmon in the photo below while fishing on my boat a few days back. The big king took us into the rocks, kelp, and 13 feet of water before charging back out into the open water where we could land it. A couple of Waterfall boats were kind enough to reel in their lines so we could land this big king salmon. Thank you very much guys!

There’s been at least one or two king salmon over 50 pounds being caught out on the ocean almost daily and that’s been going on for a couple of weeks now. One of the captains over at Shelter Cove Lodge (Aaron) has gotten his guests into king salmon of 51 pounds and 57 pounds in the last few days. The last one took the lady one and a half hours to land. Yes…a lady caught it. They have all the luck!

Here’s Mike Coleman with the 34 pound king salmon he caught with us several days ago. It was on top of the Yaki-Vegas king salmon derby pool until Bill Vernon knocked it off with his 46 pound king salmon. Bill was welcomed back in town with a ticker tape parade, party poppers, Roman candles, and cake and ice cream : )

Jim Marshall grabbed this hefty 30 pound Chinook while fishing with Capt. Troy Thain yesterday. His good friend Chris Miles was kind enough to help him hold the fish up. Plenty of laughs when these guys are in town and oh man the food is good. Chris owns Cookin-On-Wood in Phoenix and cooks up the grub for many of the professional baseball teams with facilities in Arizona. His cookin’ is to die for!

Yet another halibut enchilada feed down at Man Town last night with over 30 people attending this fun night down on the dock. The guests from Prince of Wales Sportfishing, Tranquil Charters, and Forget-Me-Not Charters raised $850 last night to help fund the Craig High School wrestling team this coming season. You’ve all raised $2850 this summer and I hope to continue raising much needed funds for these great kids, and of course coach Troy Thain. A huge THANK YOU to all of you that have donated to his worthy cause!

That’s all for now everyone…good fishing to you!

Rob Endsley
Prince of Wales Sportfishing
888-943-4746
www.princeofwalessportfishing.com

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* July 27th, 2012 Craig, Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on July 27th, 2012 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


The cohos have moved in here big time with limits the norm here the last few days. Halibut fishing has also been great out on the ocean when we can get outside…not much for halibut in the islands yet. There aren’t many king salmon around out there right now, but the ones that are there are rather large. There’s been at least one or two 50 plus pound king salmon caught by the lodge boats every day for the last week. Every bite you get could be the one!

Here’s repeat customers Ron and Nancie Wilder along with Uncle Franky and my dad John Endsley. Pretty amazing day of fishing to say the least…plenty of cohos out there right now that are more than willing to take a mooched but plug herring.

Scott Hall brought his daughters Beth, Bailey, and Peyton up for his 50th birthday and some father/daughter time. What a great bunch of girls Scott…good job man!

Beth Hall with her 35 pound halibut that just made it into the retentionĀ  slot. You go girl!

Grandpa John Endsley was up for a few days of fishing and got a chance to catch up with his new grand daughter Ava while he was here. My lovely wife wife Nicole is on the left.

The halibut enchilada fundraiser put on every few days by Di Thain down on the dock has been a huge hit this summer. So far our guests have raised close to $2000 for the Craig High School wrestling team. She makes halibut enchiladas that are Di-No-Mite!

A huge thank you to all of you that have contributed so far this summer. I can’t tell you how much it means to us. Without this much needed money many of these kids wouldn’t be able to afford to travel with the team. School sports here in Southeast Alaska is a very complicated with expensive float planes, hotels, and meals just to travel to meets and the state finals.

This has become so popular that Capt. Rafael with Tranquil Charters is now bringing his guests over too. The food is great, there’s a lot of laughs and fish lies told, and it’s all for a very worthy cause. Thanks again everyone!

Fishing has been excellent lately and we have high hopes that it will continue. Another thank you to those that have joined us so far this summer and we look forward to seeing the rest of you soon…very soon!

Rob Endsley
Prince of Wales Sportfishing
Craig, Alaska Salmon and Halibut Fishing Charters
888-943-4746
www.princeofwalessportfishing.com

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* July 29th Craig, Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on July 30th, 2011 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


Limits of both king and silver salmon were easy to come by here up until about three or four days ago in Craig, Alaska. Fishing is still good for both…just not the stupid salmon action that’s been spoiling us most of the summer.

Our guests that spend some time targetting king salmon are finding limits on a near daily basis and we’ve had 42 and 48 pound king salmon hit the dock this past week. The silver salmon fishing remains what I would call decent, with the four boats in our small fleet getting anywhere from a half a limit per day to full limits. It seems like few of the hatchery silvers are pushing into the islands from the Klawock Hatchery and hopefully that run continues to build. There seems to be a little gap in the silver run right now and we’re all hopeful that another push will come in headed for the hatchery.

We’ve been blasting offshore to catch our limits of chicken halibut and picking up a few nice sea bass, yelloweye, and ling cod while we’re out there. The pipe jigs that dad and I made two years ago continue to produce the most halibut bites of anything we drop over the side. The things really work!

Here’s Lester Surgener from Bakersfield, CA with his 48 pound king salmon from last week. He caught it with Capt. Kim aboard the Sea Hunt. Kim has been on a king salmon tear lately!

My dad, John Endsley, and his buddies Frank, Joe, and Paul with a limit of nice king salmon from the last day of their trip (yesterday). It’s sure nice to fish with pops and the rest of the guys up here in Alaska!

Here’s a great link to a weather cam here in Craig…courtesy of Nancie and Ron Wilder who visited us in early July.

Craig, Alaska Weather Cam

Sorry…no new videos to upload with all this rain and wind we’ve been experiencing lately. It looks like the weather is going to calm down in a couple of days and I’ll bust out the GoPro camera again when it does.

Good fishing!

Captain Rob Endsley
Craig, Alaska Salmon and Halibut Charters
888-943-4746
www.princeofwalessportfishing.com

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* July 19th Southeast Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on July 20th, 2011 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


The silvers came pouring into the waters around Craig in big numbers around a week ago and we’ve been getting limits or near limits every day since. The fish are averaging 5 to 10 pounds right now and we’ve had some wide open action mooching cut plug herring for these scrappy fish. There’s also still plenty of king salmon available at all the usual haunts. There’s been a few fish in the 40’s and one of the charters from Klawock brought in a whopping 58 pounder yesterday. I would imagine there will be a few more fish like that in the next few weeks.

Here’s a few pics from this past week. These are just a very few of all of the great fish that have hit our dock.

Steve Maris with a limit of yelloweye rockfish and ling cod.

The Holt family with limits of nice king salmon from Prince of Wales Island. I grew up with these guys…man the stories.

Judy and just one of her king salmon. Capt. Rafael described her as the “sweetest lady ever”. All that good karma bodes well on the fishing grounds for Judy and husband Joe!

Last but not least here’s a couple of Alaska fishing videos from the GoPro video camera to wet your whistle.

King Salmon Recorded by the Stam Cam

Silver Salmon Fishing in Craig, Alaska

The salmon and halibut fishing has been outstanding here this summer and these videos are just a brief sampling of what Craig, Alaska has to offer. Come and join us here in Alaska one of these days!

Captain Rob Endsley
Prince of Wales Sportfishing
Craig, Alaska Salmon and Halibut Fishing Charters
www.princeofwalessportfishing.com

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* Craig, Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on July 1st, 2011 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


King salmon fishing has been rock solid here in Craig, Alaska this past week. On some days we’ve gotten into totally wide open king salmon bites and on others we work a little harder for some quality fish. Regardless, it’s been a great ride here this past month for king salmon!

There are few places on the west coast where you can mooch cut plug herring the way it’s done here in Craig and have so much opportunity to catch multiple species. It’s hand’s on fishing…you feel the bite, you set the hook, and you fight the fish!

Here’s magician’s John Walton and Doug Bennett with their first ever king salmon. Hope to see these guys back here again!

Craig, Alaska veterans Sally and Craig Kvam with Sally’s 35 pound Chinook. Our local Trooper was even kind enough to record her catch on her license for her. Good stuff!

Dale, Craig, Dustin, and Vince with a nice limit of king salmon. We had three great days of fishing with these guys.

Dustin finished the trip with this 30 pound Tyee!

And Papa Vince took the group jackpot with this upper 30’s king salmon.

Here’s a couple of videos from the new GoPro video camera I added to the charter boat this summer. I’ve turned it on a few more times and will get the videos loaded as I have time.

King Salmon Fishing with the GoPro

King Salmon Fishing w/ GoPro

The big boys are starting to come in off the ocean the last few days. I’ve heard of two 40’s, a 45, 47, and 49 pound Chinook the last three days and I’m sure it won’t be long before someone tops the 50 pound mark. July is the month for hawg kings around here and I think we’re going to see a bunch of trophy class king salmon coming out of these waters this year!

The silver salmon have been trickling in here for a couple weeks now and by the looks of thing we could see some great silver fishing in July. I’ll report back in another week!

Captain Rob Endsley
Prince of Wales Sportfishing
Craig, Alaska Salmon and Halibut Fishing Charters
www.princeofwalessportfishing.com
888-943-4746

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* July 28th Craig, Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on July 29th, 2010 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


Then they were gone! We had a great week prior to our last report, with quite a few salmon around to bend rods and then in the matter of a few tides they vanished. Since then we’ve been working very hard for 6 to 10 silvers and a king salmon or two per boat per day. Not the end of the world…but definitely not the sizzling hot action that we all hope for when our customers show up here in Craig, Alaska.

Many of the large power trollers here in Craig have been having good success 15 to 20 miles offshore, with rumors of 100 to as many as 300 silvers per day with king salmon mixed in. Then a week ago they were seven miles offshore and just two days ago most of the troll fleet was working within sight of St. Joseph Island just north of Noyes Island.

You can bet these guys aren’t going around in circles out there for their health. The fish that we’ve been holding our breath for seem to be headed this way and we saw the first good king salmon bite in nearly a month yesterday just inside the ocean. Along with the king salmon came a few ocean silvers in the low teens, the kind that engulf a cut plug and hit the air before you even know what’s going on. Hopefully the vanguard of a big push of salmon heading this way!

As is always the case here, you just never know what’s going to happen when you drop a cut plug herring into the depths. Ty Beaudry isn’t a stranger to fishing in Craig and had a morning to remember on the first day of his group’s trip here recently, hammering a 46 pound king within the first five minutes of fishing with Capt. Kim McCarthy on the Sea Hunt. After landing his huge king salmon they spun around and nailed a 38 pounder on the next drift. How’s that for the start to an Alaskan fishing trip!

Ty with his 46 pound king salmon caught in Craig, Alaska.

When the ocean’s cooperated we’ve had no trouble at all grabbing limits of chicken halibut from 15 to 35 pounds, as well as sea bass, yelloweye rockfish, and various other “cellar dwellars”. Getting the ocean to cooperate, however, has been a little challenging lately. With the Puget Sound in Washington now closed to all bottomfishing below 120 feet it sure gives us a new level of respect for our bottomfish species here in Southeast Alaska.

Capt. Rob Endsley

Prince of Wales Sportfishing

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* July 15 Craig, Alaska Fishing Report

Posted on July 15th, 2010 by . Filed under Uncategorized .


Silver salmon fishing has improved slightly the past few days with huge minus tides sweeping some of these great fighting fish into the islands. We’ve had four boats running lately and it seems like at least one will hit the jackpot every day and grab an entire limit of silver salmon with the other three somewhere around a dozen or so fish for the day, while losing or missing at least that many. When a school of snappy silver salmon passes under the boat doubles, trips, and quad hookups can happen fast!

Debbie and Denny Adams from Athens, Georgia are pictured below with “Lady Lucks” 28 pound king salmon. Much of the better king salmon fishing has occurred on the ocean recently with some trophy class fish being taken at the usual haunts. There definitely aren’t great numbers of king salmon out there right now, but those that are willing to work the better king salmon areas have a shot at the fish of a lifetime.

Denny holds up the 50 pound halibut that Debbie hooked on a salmon rod after bagging her first king salmon.

John Morris from Virginia bagged this great ling cod after he and the gang aboard the Rover caught their limits of silver salmon. From the sounds of things they were having a ball…we could hear them a quarter mile away hooting and hollering. These guys get it!

After a mixed bag of silver salmon, king salmon, halibut, and yelloweye for the first two and a half days we decided to target some bigger halibut with the heavy gear the last afternoon. With one minute left on the halibut clock Dick’s rod doubled over with this 70 pound flattie. Dick calmly reeled this great halibut up to top off he and the rest of the crews fish boxes with some fish and chips. He and wife Nancy are pictured below.

Capt. Kim pulled in just as we were leaving and after several drifts Ryan Wieder from Vancouver, Washington slammed the hook home on this 156 pound to finish a great day of fishing. Ryan and rest of the crew on the Sea Hunt were also lucky enough to get a full limit of silver salmon first thing in the morning. Nice work guys and thank you again for the engagement card and gift!

Rob Endsley

Prince of Wales Sportfishing

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