Alaska.org - Ask Bob

Halibut Fishing in Alaska: Best Time


Q: We are planning a cruise to Alaska, and our timeframe is pretty open. Some of the guys would like to fish halibut while we're there. When is fishing for halibut the best? --Liz

A: Liz, the prime halibut season coincides nicely with Alaska’s peak travel season: June, July, and August. Halibut fishing is most popular in the Cook Inlet region of Alaska, a region which encompasses Anchorage, Homer, Seward, Whittier and other towns you’ll probably want to visit anyways, due to their proximity to Kenai Fjords National Park and Denali National Park. Kodiak Island is also a prime halibut fishing location. By fall, the halibut head back out to sea to spawn.

According to a friend who runs the fishing-tour company Ninilchik Charters, the halibut start following the hooligan and herring into the Cook Inlet beginning in May, but you don’t see a lot of halibut until summer is in full swing. Ninilchik does halibut-fishing tours out of Homer, Seward or Ninilchik (about three hours from Anchorage). Fishing for halibut can be a workout, too: While the typical halibut caught weighs in at around 22 pounds, these guys can top 300 pounds.