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Thread: Fishing Regs in AK look extremely complex

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    Default Fishing Regs in AK look extremely complex

    I haven't fished in AK yet but, after reading the state fishing regulations; I am wondering... How do you know if you are fishing in the right stream? So many streams are open and closed and have different rules, are the misl markers easy to see? Do they label the streams obviously and frequently? Pa. doesn't have so many different regulations, and one stream looks just like the one next to it, and it doesn't matter. I plan on fishing without a guide, and I am wondering if I can realistically keep track of what stream I am fishing in at all times.

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    It is tough. I feel for you. Read, read, read and compare maps (good ones) with the reg books. The best thing to do is to get to an area and go talk to the local tackle shops, they will help you out with the regs for the area.

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    Member alaskachuck's Avatar
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    Feel free to ask any questions you have on the fishing forum. There is no such thing as a stupid question just a stupid mistake. I can understand most of the regs for south central pretty well. Then again all but the lower Kenai regs for kings. I feel like I should call the lawyer (yuck) for his opinon of what is legal or not. I dont fish the lower much for kings but every time I look at the regs im like wow. Thank god for friends with knowledge, this forum, and when all else fails I call fish and game and ask them.
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    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    The complexity of the regs has grown exponentially to complement the exponential growth in the angler demand for a limited natural resource... yeah even in the fish factory that is Alaska!

    But on the flip side, the restrictive nature of many of the premiere AK sport fisheries is what has helped to keep them sustainable. Some may see the regs as a pain, but they help to maximize stability and predictability in the fisheries for MANY MANY users.

    Even here in WA and OR where our salmon runs are no where near as plentiful as AK, bag limits are far more generous, and the very notion of an annual limit on kings is vehemently looked upon with incredulous disdain!

    The OR coast has enjoyed a 2-king daily bag with NO annual limit for decades. This year they are considering a one-fish bag with an annual cap of 5 kings... and folks are fighting against it.

    My local advisory committee tried to float a proposal for abundance-based annual limits on chinook here in my home river/estuary... it was dead on arrival.

    So what's the alternative when king runs fall flat on their face? King seasons whittled down to a week or two, if they happen at all... that's what. Or unpredictable in-season closures. What a mess!
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    Member AKFishOn's Avatar
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    It is really rough, you better stay at home and leave the fishing to me. ;-)

  7. #7

    Default agreed

    I agree with the posts. The regs are very complex. So, spend the time on the plane studying them intently. Have a good map or a gps with mapping ability. Check and double check the regs.

    Also, I want to echo that there is plenty of free advice right here, simply ask and you shall receive.

    Good luck.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by AcousticLicks View Post
    I haven't fished in AK yet but, after reading the state fishing regulations; I am wondering... How do you know if you are fishing in the right stream? So many streams are open and closed and have different rules, are the misl markers easy to see? Do they label the streams obviously and frequently? Pa. doesn't have so many different regulations, and one stream looks just like the one next to it, and it doesn't matter. I plan on fishing without a guide, and I am wondering if I can realistically keep track of what stream I am fishing in at all times.
    Im just visiting, so I dont know much about the regs but to be safe, I figure: If no one else is here fishing, there are no fish, or its illegal.

    That way, I know I wont get a fine.
    Random guy in Fly shop: "Where did this happen???? In real life or in Alaska?"

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    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    I find the regs here pretty simple especially now that pretty much everything is on color coded maps. Compared to say the washington state fishing regs our regs are easy.

    Learn the statewide regs first they are pretty simple, then figure out where you want to fish for and what part of the state its in learn the area wide rules listed at the beginning of the section on that area. Then look for the water you wanna fish in the exceptions and you're done. Also most popular places have regs posted and people around who can help you...
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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    If you don't know where you are out in the woods in Alaska, you have bigger problems than the complexity of the regs.

    Once you start to break it down, it becomes much easier. A lot of the complexity has to do with the fact that there are often 4+ species in the same body of water. Once you know where you are and what you want to target, it is a lot easier to figure everything out.

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    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    Anybody else remember when the drainage was listed then a number code and a letter code was written next to it and you had to look on the back of the regs to figure out what it meant? Now that was confusing...
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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    Default Read 'em and never weep...

    All the posts were correct.
    Add in the following:

    NEVER VIOLATE

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  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by DRIFTER_016 View Post
    You want to see complex regulations, look here:

    http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/Business...02_163615.html
    Ha! Being from Michigan, we fish northern Ontario every year. The regulations make your head spin

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by ak_powder_monkey View Post
    Anybody else remember when the drainage was listed then a number code and a letter code was written next to it and you had to look on the back of the regs to figure out what it meant? Now that was confusing...
    We still do this in Michigan. Barbless hooks, flys only, artificial only, live bait allowed, but only between April 15 and the first full moon after the vernal equinox in years that are divisible by 3....yuck

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    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fishfood View Post
    Ha! Being from Michigan, we fish northern Ontario every year. The regulations make your head spin

    I spent 38 years of my life in Ontario, and yep their regs are pretty complex.

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    Member AKRoadkill's Avatar
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    The regs are a whole lot simpler if you pick one particular lake or stream you want to fish. Get familiar with them, and if it's not open for what you're planning, check another one. I verify regs almost every time I go out, unless I've been to that same stream recently and KNOW the regs.


    ..."I thought it was okay" doesn't wash with the Troopers...

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    Member 9601's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sodabiscuit12345 View Post
    Im just visiting, so I dont know much about the regs but to be safe, I figure: If no one else is here fishing, there are no fish, or its illegal.

    That way, I know I wont get a fine.
    This is a good point. If you're fishing alone and slaying them then you're probably breaking the law.

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    Default Call

    If you have questions about regulations, call the guys who write the tickets. All the AWT phone numbers are in the reg books.

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    Member akshrop's Avatar
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    My favorite story about the regs is one where my brother was planning a trip up with me and ask that I send him the regs. I did and he called a couple of days later totally confused. I said yeah you got to be a lawyer to understand them. His reply was that he is a lawyer and he couldn't figure them out. I called the office in Fairbanks with a question we had about a particular paragraph and was told that they didn't understand it and to call the Anchorage office. I did and they didn't know what it meant. I was then told to call the trooper in that area and ask if he/she would ticket me for doing it there. Now this was the hunting reg, but it still was pretty funny. Now I call the troopers everytime I have a question. I have gotten a couple of I don't think so's from them as well as yeses and no's.

  20. #20
    Member monello's Avatar
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    Default Regs

    Remember regredless of your intent, if you violate the regs you are subject to the fine. I don't think they allow 'do-overs' on the water and they can confiscate your gear.

    You could also have your license suspended and after paying $245 for the privilege to fish here, I'd hate to have that happen.

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