Winter king harvest hits target
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Winter troll fishing wraps up tonight at midnight (4-30-14). Fishermen had one of their better recent winter seasons. As of mid-day today (Wednesday), trollers had landed 46,800 king salmon, far more than the 26,200 landed by this time last year, and well above the 5-year average.
Troll fish management biologist Patty Skannes says this year’s harvest is right on target. The guideline harvest level for winter kings is between 43,000 and 47,000 so-called “treaty kings,” or all fish NOT produced in Alaska hatcheries, and subject to the terms of the US treaty with Canada.
Skannes estimates that about 3,000 of this winter’s kings were produced in the state.
The Alaska Department of Fish & Game will have better numbers once all fish tickets are in from processors around the region.
Prices this winter peaked at over $11 per pound, but dropped as weather improved and more fishermen headed out to the grounds.
At one point in mid-April, some trollers were landing over 30 kings per day.
State planners still see a road across Baranof Island as an important part of transportation infrastructure -- though it may take decades to become reality. The Department of Transportation held an open house and informational meeting in Sitka this week (8-20-14) on the latest draft of the Southeast Alaska Transportation Plan. And while maintaining and refurbishing the ferry system is high on the list of priorities for the region, major road construction -- both in Juneau and in Sitka -- remains on the books. more
Sitka drivers frustrated by poor road conditions on Halibut Point Road during this summer’s paving project can take heart: It’s going to get better. Al Clough, the Southeast Regional director for the Department of Transportation says that while heavy rains have been a setback, the road will be done -- or a driveable temporary surface in place -- by the end of the paving season a month from now. more