Reeling ‘Em In: Giving fishing tips in a town of know-it-alls

I’ve often been asked if it’s challenging writing a fishing column in a hamlet where much of the population alludes to possessing triple the knowledge and skills of an Obi-Piscator Kenobi. Especially, when it comes to mastering perfect angling techniques utilizing impeccable gear which results in mind-blowing success rates along with the knack to make stuff up faster than I can ask questions.

I’ll admit that, sometimes, it’s tough to tell if an angler’s yanking my chain with devious fabrications or laying out tales based on tangible facts.

Fortunately, over time, I have developed a semi state-of-the-art b.s. meter because I have fished so many years in so many places that there’s nary a cock-and-bull fishing whopper that I haven’t heard or made up myself.

Being secretive and/or misleading is part of the sport. Who willingly gives away their favorite fishing hole or highly classified lures? Even if someone decides to do so, any seasoned and serious line-flipper would immediately presume the info is some kind of setup. Why? Because no dedicated fisherpersonage in their right mind would ever reveal covert info empowering some dude or dudette to out-fish them unless they’ve inadvertently blurted out their secrets after indulging in a touch or ten of Gentleman Jack around a campfire.

There are exceptions of course and Homer and has a plethora of them.

Each year, I receive a cyber load of email from travelers who have visited our burg-by-the-bay and loved it.

They mentioned the friendliness of the locals and their willingness to help with everything from suggesting sites to visit, activities to participate in, up to and including, teaching inexperienced visitors how to gear up and nail some of our warrior fish without getting arrested.

I thought some of you would appreciate knowing how much your thoughtfulness is appreciated.

Time now to take a look at the fishing report for Aug. 23.

Freshwater Fishing:

Expect poor to passable coho fishing over the week in the roadside streams. Keep trying the mouths of the streams during the incoming tide to intercept the newbies or at daybreak when the fish are up for some morning cuisine. Salmon roe clusters suspended under a bobber are normally the preferred nosh of the day.

Fishing for dollies on the upper sections of the Anchor River, Deep Creek, and Ninilchik River has been poor to reasonable with fish remaining spread throughout the sections. Beads are their favorite munchies this time of the season.

Saltwater Fishing


Hot halibut fishing continues to rule in Cook Inlet. If the storm gods allow, the more outlying localities have been producing the heftier flats and more of them. Want or must stick closer to shore? Anglers willing to chill and spend the day soaking bait can get into them with patience. Nearshore sites around Tutka Bay and Eldred Passage have been known show some action this time of year.

You might want to give a shot at drifting in new areas to pin point fish before setting the anchor.

I’ll bet you already know that herring on a circle hook is the most popular bait but octopus, salmon heads, and jigs will get their gorge on too. Especially, if you are using an odiferious chum bag to guide them to the sworn land of special treats.

King Salmon

Trolling for kings has remained moderately passable in Kachemak Bay with lure draggers hitting their targets scattered throughout the area. Bluff Point and Point Pogibshi are primo spots to hit.

The most predominant set-ups are small troll herring or spoons behind a flasher, but hootchies and tube flies can entice takedowns.

Other Salt water

There are still a few silvers flip flopping around the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon. Snagging will be the best option for catching these remaining fish even though it will take all the fun out it for some of you because it’s legal now.

Silver fishing within Kachemak Bay and Cook Inlet hasn’t been the thrill of a lifetime yet with a mix bag of hits and misses. The Point Pogibshi and the Silver Ridge areas hold the most promise for conjuring up some strike action.

Lingcod anglers continued to land the mega uglies and tasty delights along the outer coast during the past week. Leadhead jigs with a white grubtail are working fine.

Surf fishing in Cook Inlet has been middling. Surf rod aficionados are finding success with halibut on the Clam Gulch beaches. Whiskey Gulch provides good shoreline access as well.

Homer Spit is great place to catch a variety of fish, some of which are very tasty while other saltwater denizens lurking just offshore look at you in the same way.

Emergency Orders

Please review the emergency orders and advisory announcements below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip.

NEW: Emergency Order 2-SS-7-57-23 open snagging in the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon waters (excluding the Homer Harbor) for the remainder of the season.

Emergency Order 2-RF-7-20-23 reduces the rockfish bag and possession limits in Cook Inlet to three per day and six in possession of which only one per day, two in possession can be nonpelagic.

Nick can be reached at if you have any tips, tales or rumors you think anyone would believe if it showed up in the column.