Four days before Christmas we reach the winter solstice – the shortest day of 2020. The changes that follow are imperceivable at first, but for those of us in the northern hemisphere, each day grows a wee bit longer, the sun creeps a fraction of a degree higher in the sky, and we begin the journey from winter to spring. As we look toward May 2021 in Sitka, we see a bright light on the horizon, a shift back to a normal that we once thought was a given.
With positive hopes for 2021, AU wishes you the best for the holiday season and a happy new year. We expect to operate an exciting, full, and “normal” season in Sitka. There is no better way to break out of this long hibernation than fishing the saltwater wilderness of the North Pacific. We hope you’ll join us.
While most of our regulations remain from 2020, there are abundance-based adjustments in king salmon and halibut limits. The official numbers for halibut will be available at the end of January and by the end of February for king salmon. Halibut are managed by a “reverse slot” limit and a daily bag of one halibut. Last season that slot was one halibut under 45 inches or over 80 inches (U45O80). Our best guess for 2021 is U44O80 with some hope that the U number will be set a little higher at the International Pacific Halibut Commission meeting in late January.
As for king salmon, the 2020 season delivered the most liberal king limits we’ve ever seen, with the number of anglers cut way down due to COVID-19. The expectation for 2021 is that king numbers won’t change appreciably, but the number of anglers coming to Alaska should get closer to normal producing king regulations. This will likely be 1 per day plus an annual limit that will drop from 3 to 2 to 1 over the course of the season.
Bookings for 2021
Holidays are a great time to meet up with friends and family – virtually or otherwise – and get excited about a fishing trip. Our schedule is quickly filling up from the combination of pent-up demand from those who decided not to travel in 2020 and from anglers who enjoyed some of the best fishing we’ve seen in years. We still have great dates available, especially in May, June, and September. Give us a call or email and make some plans. It’s time to give yourself something to really look forward to.