Kenai Peninsula Alaska Halibut Fishing

halibut fishing boats for Kenai Peninsula
Alaska Halibut Fishing Boats

The first morning of our Alaskan fishing trip, we decided to go out on the salt water and try out halibut fishing.  We were fishing in the Cook Inlet just south of Kenai, Alaska.  We had been told that the halibut fishing was great, and yes, there were tons of pictures of one hundred and two and three hundred pound halibut all over the fishing lodge, but you never really know what you are getting into.

The lodge that we stayed at (Deep Creek Fishing Lodge, owned by Steve Moe and his wife Vivian) has two 28 foot boats that they use on the salt water for halibut. These boats are awesome to say the least.  Below is a picture of the halibut boats so you can get a feel for what I am talking about.  They are perfect for halibut fishing and the potentially nasty Alaskan weather too.

cook inlet halibut fishing
halibut fishing on Cook Inlet

Once we started our journey just a mile away to the launch site, things got really interesting.  I have used many launch ramps before, but nothing quite like the deal they got going in Ninilchik, Alaska.  Basically, you trailer your boat down to the “launch site” and take your boat off your car trailer.  Then the crew down there completely takes over.  What they do is they use a crane that has a trailer hitch on it, and they back your boat up into the water.  Next, you start your engine and pull off the trailer and away you go.
Here is a video of the Ninilchik launch ramp for small boats:

It was wild to see, and amazingly quick and easy.  The same deal when you pull your boat out later in the day.  And the total fee for this service is $55  per day.

Once we got out about 20 miles, we started our day halibut fishing.  The deal was each of us had our own pole.  Our captain Skye and Jeremy did a great job of loading up our hooks with weights and bait all day long.  The halibut bait that we used was cod fish, herring, and octopus.  The fishing line was pretty heavy duty.  The leaders were about 30 feet long and the final portion was some 300lb test line.  So I wasn’t too worried about anything every breaking free on us.  Here is a picture right before we started catching halibut.

We were fishing in about 180 feet of water, and there was about two knots of current.  So we all had some considerable amount of fishing line out.  But, within a few minutes of dropping down our poles, we started noticing that something was beginning to bite on our halibut poles.  My pole was the first to go off, so I began reeling it in.  After a few minutes, and not too much of a fight at all, it was a false alarm, just a couple pound cod.  But we pulled it overboard, and the deckhands began cutting it up and said we could surely use it for bait for the halibut.

It wasn’t too much longer until some of the other fishing poles went off, and this time it was halibut action.  Some of the halibut that we caught were between 20-50 pounds.  No 100 pound halibut today, but we limited out our 2 halibut per person within two hours, and that was pretty good.  The weather was starting to pick up with some relatively heavy winds and some light rain and moderate seas, so we decided to call it a day right after landing the final fish.  And back in we went to put our boat back on the trailer.

CJ Catching an Alaskan Halibut
Alaskan Halibut Fishing near Homer,AK

A super great day halibut fishing, and I was most excited about being able to bring a ton of fish home and share it with family and friends, and especially my wife who told me to make sure to come home with some halibut or else… Here are some more fishing pictures from the day we caught all the halibut in Alaska.

Deep Creek Fishing Halibut Limits
Deep Creek Fishing Club

Fishing the Kenai Peninsula of Alaska for Halibut and Salmon

Fishing in Alaska is something brand new for me.  Going to a true fishing lodge is also something brand new for me.  It’s been just about 7 hours since we landed, and I think I just might be hooked for life.

Alaska is such a beautiful place, and by the looks of all the pictures on the walls of the Deep Creek Fishing Lodge, we are probably going to be in for some super great fishing over the next four days.  Tomorrow we are heading out on the ocean or salt as our captain Steve who is the owner of the Deep Creek Fishing Lodge says.  We are going to be in search of some halibut, which he says we will be sure to catch within minutes.  Our plan is to go salmon fishing in the local river the next day.   I can’t wait, this is exactly what I have been waiting for, the chance at catching a monster halibut up here in Alaska.

So here is the quick summary of this Alaskan fishing trip so far.  1) We left San Francisco airport for Seattle, then took a second plane to Anchorage, then a final 3rd small plane to Kenai.  All of the travelling was a total of about 9 hours.  Once we landed in Kenai, a woman from the lodge picked us up and we took the Hummer about an hour until we arrived at the Deep Creek Fishing lodge.

The Deep Creek Fishing Lodge is amazing in many ways.  First off, it is a true wooden log lodge.  All of the smaller cabins that are for guests to sleep in are wooden logs too.  And it sits on a bluff which is about 50 feet above the sea level, so you have a perfect view across the 38 mile channel to the other side where there are several 11,000 foot peaks/volcanoes to look at.  Please enjoy the pictures of the lodge as well as the videos, its super impressive.  If the views and the background aren’t enough for you, you will definitely be impressed with the staff and owners of the lodge.  Steve who is the owner is full of all kinds of fishing stories. Tonight at dinner (king crab legs and a massive mix of cold seafood for starters) Steve said that he has been fishing these exact waters for over 25 years now and is one of the top captains in the area.

King Crab Dinner at Fishing Lodge
Deep Creek King Crab Dinner

He said he won 9 derbys within that time period, so I am feeling pretty good about our chances at a nice halibut or two or five.  The rest of the staff is also super great, and very helpful and there to help you out whenever you need anything.

Since it is early June, the one odd thing so far has been how light it is.  It’s 11:30pm right now, and although I know I need to go to sleep to be rested for fishing in the morning, I just can’t.  It’s so light outside, and I am getting ready to take some pictures of across the channel to get some good sunset shots of the volcanoes…. Who could blame me.

Some good stories to come soon, I’m not sure if I will be able to sleep at all tonight.  Sarah is coming to wake us all up tomorrow moring at 5:00am for a 5:30 breakfast…. life is great up here at this Alaskan fishing lodge.

Here is a photo looking past the Deep Creek Fishing Lodge and out over the water.  The mountains with snow on them across the channel are 38 miles away.Deep Creek Fishing Lodge Kenai

Halibut Fishing in Santa Cruz California

The halibut fishing has been pretty hot. Take a look at the guys filleting their day’s catch below. This group of guys went out on their private boat on Sunday before Memorial Day and caught 4 halibut. This was their first day fishing for halibut of the season, so my guess is that fishing must be pretty good right now if you know where to go for the halibut. They mentioned that they caught the fish just right off the Santa Cruz point, which I think is just south of Santa Cruz harbor less than a few miles.

Some other halibut fishermen from Santa Cruz harbor said they too had some good luck over the past few weeks fishing for halibut at the Santa Cruz Point. Most of them seem to be using live bait when its possible to get that. Others are using dead anchovies or sardines as bait and then just bouncing that off the bottom until the fish strike. The guys from the halibut video said that all of the fish gave them a pretty good fight, so get prepared for a little workout.

One quick fishing tip, be sure to only gaff the halibut that you are positive are legal fish. If you are bringing up a fish and you are not sure it is of legal size, you are better off netting it, and then measuring it. That way, it will if the fish is undersized, you will have a better chance of releasing it alive compared to if you have gaffed a hole inside of it already.

Good luck with the halibut fishing!

Santa Cruz, CA Fishing Report

Here is a Report From BaySide Marine from Santa Cruz
Feb. 17
The swells have started to drop here and things are looking much better at the Harbor mouth. The few reports that we have had this month include Seabass, Squid, Halibut, and Perch. There was a nice Halibut caught near the Mile Reef in Capitola. The Seabass and Halibut are still hit and miss in Monterey but there were a few good days last week. The Perch fishing has been good near Manresa and the Cement Ship. The best bet is to use Motor Oil Grubs and Coon Striped Shrimp. There is a Perch tournament on March 20 and once again I will have all the live shrimp and worms you need. Stop by the shop to get the entry you must sign up by Feb. 21.
JAN. 19
The fishing for Seabass has been good for the anglers who were in Monterey before the storm. The Squid is still the bait of choice. The swells and winds have become huge so there has been no action today. The Humbolt Squid are still wide open in the edge of the Monterey Canyon in 800-1200 feet of water. Fishing for crab has been decent on the north coast in 240 feet of water The Surf perch have been biting well on Coon striped shrimp.

Jan. 2 2010 Happy New Year!
The Squid fishing, crabbing, and Sand dabs are keeping anglers busy during these nice calm winter days. There has been a few swells but the winds have been generally light after the rain. There are big Squid in the Soquel Canyon and near Davenport. There was a good bite on Squid near 36’46/121’51. The Squid are in 800-1200 feet of water and the big Glow Ahi Jigs are working best. The crab fishing is still doing well up the coast in 200 feet of water. I still have crab pots rigged from Mc Kay’s with 300 feet of leaded rope for only $205.

Dec. 19
The crab fishing is still doing well for the anglers fishing up the coast. There have been a few good reports of Humbolt Squid being caught in the Canyons in 800-1200 feet of water. The swells have been up and down with the storms that have passed through. We have the 2010 Sport fishing License in stock along with Gift Certificates for stocking stuffers. We also have a great deal on McKay Crab Pots and Ace Line Hauler. I hope to see you soon. Happy Holidays!
Nov. 18
The crab fishing is still going well for the anglers up the coast in 180-220 feet of water. There were some Humbolt Squid caught in 1200 feet of water 8 miles from Santa Cruz in the Soquel Canyon.
Nov. 14
The fishing was great today near Franklin Point and there were some good scores near 4 Mile Beach. The best bet on crab seems to be up the coast in 200 feet of water. There was no wind in the morning but there was a breeze in the afternoon. The winds are reported to be calmer Sunday so come finish off the Rock fishing season in calm weather. The sun has been out with a little morning fog.
Nov. 13
The fishing was good today for the anglers who went looking for crabs. I spoke to one boat who had 30 crabs for 6 pots in 200 feet of water up the coast. The Rock fishing was decent for the anglers who worked the local reefs. There was some wind today in the afternoon which did not help. The winds and swells are expected to decrease all day Saturday and Sunday making this a great time to go fishing before the Rock fishing closes.
Nov. 11
The wind was down all morning and the fishing for crab has been great. I heard of good reports on the Becky Ann with Capt. Jimmy. The winds are going to remain light for the weekend so come crabbing and finish off the Rock fishing season.
Nov. 10
The crab season is open and there have been some good scores near Natural bridges and straight out of the Santa Cruz Harbor. The Crab are ranging from keeper to 6 + inches. The Humbolt Squid are showing in the deep canyons near the Soquel Hole and Davenport. There were a few boats up near Franklin Point in calm seas today and the action was good. The winds are down for the next few days and Rock fishing closes Sunday so come fishing.
PV Report
I was down for a few days fishing with my girl Regina in P.V. for a few days. I went fishing with Danny ” LuLu” on his father in laws boat “Balta” the first day and caught a nice tuna in the upper 180’s. We caught a few more Dorado and came home with the sun on our backs. I had Ryan “Salty” who works on Maximo as my deck hand for 3 days. Ryan was able to sneak out and pull on some fish for the first time this year. I can not say enough about how much this kid has become a seasoned Salty angler / deck hand. We had a great day one and my freezer was filled. The second day we went to the bank with Danny Osuna and Regina made her first appearance on the boat. We caught Tuna from 60-90 pounds on bullet Tunas on the troll. Regina did a great job on her first Tuna and had a great time on the water and in P.V. The last day things went slow at the Bank but we did end up with some nice Dorado. All in all it was a great trip and great weather. Thanks again to all my good friends in P.V. and in La Cruz! Until Next Time!