Fishing Tour FAQ

Some rain gear is available on the boat, but it is used and limited in size and quantity, so we highly recommend you bring your own, heavy-duty rain gear. Fishing can be an extremely cold and wet pastime, so be sure you bring a full set of rain pants and coat.
No. All fishing and boat equipment is provided by us. All you need to do is arrive on time with the appropriate outdoor clothing.

To reach the island, you may take the ferry from the mainland or arrive via airplane and take the small airport ferry. For more information on these and to book your transport, Follow the links below:

Alaska Marine highway System (main ferry)

Ketchikan Airport Ferry

For multi-day excursions, your tour guide will meet you at your lodge the first night and give you directions to the boat dock and other instructions. All tours, day and multi-day, begin at the state dock next to the boat ramp, next to Knudson Cove Marina. For most tours we will meet you nearby and escort you to the boat to be sure you find your way. You should plan to arrive at least fifteen minutes early. For more information contact us.

Santa’s Choice does not have the facilities to provide meals, but we do provide bottled water and soda on all excursions. We recommend you shop at one of the nearby stores to prepare lunches to bring with you on the boat, or indulge in a local eatery for on-shore meals. Alcohol is permitted as long as you provide it yourself.

For each excursion you will be focusing on a unique type of fish, but it is recommended to get an all-inclusive, general fishing license for the season that you will be fishing. Additional licenses are required for catching King, or Chinook salmon.  If you purchase a license please be sure to bring a copy with you. For more information, and to purchase your license, check this link.

For multi-day excursions, we at Santa’s Choice can clean, bag, and vacuum seal your fish for $3.00 per pound of fileted weight. This fish can be stored in the chest freezer provided in your rental lodge. For all guests flying up for multiple days, we recommend flying fish boxes home as luggage because it is the most cost effective.

For cruise ship passengers or single day tours, we recommend having your fish processed by either Cedars Lodge or Clover Pass Marina. Processing and freezing will cost approximately $2.50-$3.00 per pound of fileted fish, plus the cost of specialized fish shipping boxes. These processing options will also help you calculate shipping costs, which must be overnight shipping, and both Cedars Lodge and Clover pass will handle all shipping arrangements. 

If you would like fish heads, eggs, carcasses, or your fish steaked, all processing will be through Clover Pass Marina.

Multi-day excursions will have the use of our Included rental vehicle for transport, but for cruise ship or single-day tour guests, several options exist for Island transport such as cabs, public bus, Uber and Lyft.
Yes. One lodge is dedicated to our multi-day excursion packages only, but we do have a second rental that is available separately and does not require a fishing tour booking.

Fishing regulations vary year to year and area to area. The regulation zone our tours operate in is 2C. As of 2023, the fishing limit per person for Coho, Chum, Pink, and Sockeye Salmon, at 16 inches or longer, is 6 of each species per day, 12 of each species in possession.(Possession is not related to daily limit). King or Chinook salmon limit is 1 per day, with a rotating annual possession limit which may change during the season. Halibut limit for the year 2023 is currently at 40 inches or below, 1 per day, 4 in possession, and is changed yearly. New regulations are typically announced in February or March.

The above limits are subject to change throughout the season and from year-to-year. For updated regulations check out this link.

Wondering when to book your tour? We’ve created a table below to show you when the best times to fish are according to what you’re going after.
Fish May June July August September October
Kings (chinook) All month (catch and release) All month (retention starts 6/15 All month slow N/A N/A
Cohos (silvers) N/A A couple at the end some summer cohos Fall cohos show up Fall cohos End of fall cohos
Pinks (humpies) N/A Couple end of the month Peak season Slows down in the middle N/A N/A
Sockeye (reds) N/A Very few around Peak season Peak season slows down end of month N/A N/A
Halibut Starting to move in All month All month All month slowing down at end slowing down N/A