Where to find them?
Alaskan waters are home to some of the best King Salmon fishing in the world. King Salmon resides in both salt and river waters and the best fishing spots at any given time depend on a number of factors. Many expert fishermen believe that May is the peak month for finding the saltwater King Salmon because the fish will travel closer to shore in the cooler months making them a more common catch. The river King Salmon of Alaska has a much broader peak season depending on when the fish spawn which is typically between May and July.
King Salmon is a breed of very large saltwater and river dwellers with an average size of 40 pounds but they have been recorded at over 100 pounds. Physical features of King Salmon make it easily distinguishable having very small eyes and dark gums, earning them the nickname “blackmouths”. The scaling is a blue/green mix that cuts off abruptly to white sides and underbelly. The dorsal fin is a dark hue with a whitened top and the fish will have an array of dark spots covering its top, back fin, and tail. The meat is typically orange but can also have a white or pale tint.
King Salmon are very different than most types of fish. When the Salmon hit the river area, their sole purpose is to reproduce and food is their last priority during this period. There is an abundance of ideas about how these fish get hooked if they are not eating while spawning is in progress. One of the most widely accepted theories is that the fishing bait has landed on the King Salmon eggs and the mother is trying to remove the object from the breeding area by putting the lure in its mouth. Another possible option is that the fish is trying to show anger to intimidate the foreign object from attacking the eggs. Saltwater fishermen typically use a method of trolling along the ocean waters with rigged herring while lures and salmon roe are the preferred methods in fresh waters.
The King Salmon can be a real fighter and will likely turn the reeling experience into a worthy struggle with their ability to “take the line and run”. For this reason, a strong line is recommended without overly tightening the drag. For fishing in saltwater, the widely accepted method is trolling along the ocean with a rigged bait while using lures in other bodies of water. The key is to keep the amount of line very tight and short allowing full control over the Salmon. The more line that is available the more the fish will run.