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Thread: Valdez Halibut Help?

  1. #1
    Member
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    Jun 2006
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    Fairbanks
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    Default Valdez Halibut Help?

    My family will be visiting us in August. We will be in Valdez from August 6 to the 9th. We were wondering if there are any spots to get halibut fairly close to Valdez. I would not want to go any further than Bligh Island. I was thinking of trying Galena Bay. I don't know if we would be wasting our time there or not. Any advice on spots and how deep to fish from Bligh Island on in would be appreciated. Thanks!

  2. #2

    Default Same request for July

    I have rented a military 21' boat and am not allowed to take it past Bligh Island. I too was hoping to get out and catch some Halibut and maybe some YellowEye with my wife and parents. The boat will have GPS and a fish finder so I was hoping someone could give me some advice on anywhere that we might be able to catch some Halibut or Yellow Eye.

    Also we will possibly be fishing for some Pinks and/or Silvers. Any baiting suggestions or crusing points that we shoudl try out?

  3. #3
    Member trapperrick's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
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    Seward, AK
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    Default Been there; done that

    We rented the 21' alum boat with 50 hp motor too. We went as far as Galena Bay and fished several spots, PWS, Galena Bay, Jacks Bay, etc, etc but never got a single halibut bite. About the only thing we caught were some rock fish. We also rented a native alaskan remote cabin, formerly owned by the forrest service or whatever. The copper tubing from the oil drum had been cut off and there was no heat at all. We laughingly called it "the Galena Hilton". It was a beautiful place tho, no regrets. Coming back was a bit dicey; had 6' swells; rode in the troughs coming back down Valdez Arm. If I had it to do again I'd forget renting the boat and just go out with another halibut charter; we did that too and limited out with some fairly nice fish. There is a very nice B&B there, super folks!!

  4. #4

    Default Valdez halibut

    I have fished there for many years, and have done quite well. Try the mouth of Galena Bay, roughly 75 yards from the rocks. Anchor and fish with herring bait. I have picked up a lot there. It is sandy with some rocks there, so you don't want to drift.

    Try off the mouth of Sawmill Bay if the seas are not too rough. Fish in about 100 to 150 feet of water. Again, anchor up and don't drift.

    If the seas are calm, try near the mouth of the Tatitlek Narrows, out of the traffic lanes. There is good halibut fishing, and you may pick up a wolf eel or two. Dammned ugly and mean, but a tasty fish. Just keep anything you want to keep away from it's mouth...... I have also picked up some decent Dollies here, too.

    In the lagoon on Bligh Reef, fish anywhere the ocean floor drops off. Halibut lay in there and feed. If you can get to it, fish near the reef itself in roughly 100 feet of water, again where the floor drops away. Anchor up, as a drift can get you snagged on rocks.

    In Jacks Bay, try the right side of the island as you are going into the bay. There is a sandy shelf that is full of halibut this time of year. Most don't know it's there, but I have taken some pretty big halibut from there. My personal biggest there was 150 pounds, and a friend caught one from my boat that went just over 200 pounds. We regularly caught halibut between 40 and 100 pounds here. You may have to spend some time cruising slowly with your depth finder to find this but it is well worth the time. It is a sandy bottom, so there is little chance you will snag. I wouldn't drift, though, as once you drift off this plateau, it drops off to hundreds of feet very quickly.

    Good luck. I don't fish much over there much anymore, as I moved from Fairbanks to Eagle River a couple of years ago, and it is easier to go to the Kenai from here. Valdez is still one of my favorite places, tho, and I do go there once in a while, and still have good luck there.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  5. #5

    Default Valdez halibut

    I also used to anchor overnight near the cabin by the creek inside the lagoon in Galena Bay in about 75 feet of water. I always put out a halibut rig, and nearly always caught a halibut or two right there. No barn doors, but decent eaters.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  6. #6

    Default Thank you Hawken

    Thanks for your great reply Hawken. I am losing the Silver or Halibut fishing debate with my family due to the silvers perhaps not being in yet so your information is going to be very helpful.

  7. #7
    Member
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    Default Thanks for the info

    Thanks for the info. My family got in last night and we will be down in Valdez in a couple of weeks. We are all excited to see what we can catch down there. Thanks again.

  8. #8

    Default

    Another descent hole in Galena bay is off the little island in about 160' of water. You can also fish the area around the Bligh reef marker in about 140' of water and as a bonus you can get up close and personal with the sea lions that hang out on the marker.
    A good thing to remember in Valdez arm is that the seas normally kick up in the afternoon around 3 and they calm down around 6 so try to stay out of the arm during that time, I like to hide in Sawmill bay you can catch salmon around the anchorage in there or if you can go up the creek that flows into the bay about 1/4 mile and catch dollies in the "mini" canyon and then if you like steamer clams they can be found by digging down about 6" with a large spoon in the areas with smaller rocks and mud.

  9. #9

    Default Back from the Trip

    Thanks to all the replied to my original post. My family and I had a great time in Valdez. We caught a ton of Pinks on our shore fishing day so that was a good start.

    On our boat day we had a good time with my Dad hooking into a big fiesty Silver just on the far side of the mouth of Jacks Bay. We tried for Halibut around Gallena but got nothing. while cruising back to Jacks bay I Got my silver. My wife caught a pink near Gallena as well as a tiny Lingcod (released). We actually had a few more hook-ups and bites near Jacks bay but we had some bad knot tying and one case of bad boat running that cost us the fish. We ended the day trying for Halibut by the Island in Jacks Bay. My wife hooked one and got it all the way to the surface before I tried to net it in our tiny rubber net (I hate those things) and then it was gone (and she was mad at me).

    Anyways it was a good trip and those that posted here gave nice advice and certainly gave us some confidence for our trip so thank you all very much.

    Ben Johnson

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