Chinook (King) Salmon Summer Fishing
The average size of summer Chinook Salmon, which changes from location to location, is between 16 to 22 lbs/7 to 10kgs and fish above 30 pounds/13 kgs are common. Some people claim that their flavor is richer than those caught in the spring.
In the summer Chinook Salmon can be found in the ocean, though some are still found in rivers, streams and lakes. You’ll find them in abundance in the Great Lakes.
The ocean is filled with much more food than rivers and streams and Chinook spend much of the summer gorging on food and growing rapidly up to the early fall when they stop eating to begin their migration back to the headwaters of their birth river to spawn.
Summer Chinook are larger than Spring Chinook. Not surprising as they’ve had longer to feed.
Salmon Fishing Gear
Firstly the use of a fish finder is critical in locating Chinook Salmon as they can be anywhere from 15 feet to 150 feet/4.6 meters to 48 meters down. By mid summer most of them will be found closer to 20 feet/6 meters down.
King Salmon Fishing Lures
Try any of these lures as they’ve proven successful in the past: William’s Wabblers, Nasty Boys, Rapalas, Thunder Sticks and Sutton Silver Spoon.
If you only have one of these, consider picking up a few others. One lure may work well one day and prove to be utterly useless the next day.
Change up your lures if one appears is not working for you.
Great Lakes Chinook Salmon Fishing
Due to the size of the lakes and the storms that can come up, most people fishing the Great Lakes, especially on Lake Superior where waves can reach 30 feet/10 meters, use larger boats that have trouble maintaining a slow speed.
Therefore make sure if you’re on a charter that they have working downriggers. The best depth to fish at is the 53°F/12°C thermal. This is a comfortable temperature for the Chinook Salmon and it’s where most bait fish like to hang out.
Charters that Provide Everything
When going on a fishing vacation, the last thing most people want to do is plan out every little thing. Imagine a fishing trip where the guide or charter captain provides you with everything. They provide the fishing gear, tackle, bait, lures and weather gear. These cost a bit more but are a lot of fun and well worth it.
Now counter this with planning your gear, the right tackle for the given habitat, locating the right stream, researching local regulations, renting a boat, renting a guide and so on. While many of us enjoy these extra details, some people just want to get away and spend all the time fishing.
Renting a full service fishing charter costs more, but it is well worth it. They even provide food and drink. You can imagine what dinner will be so bring a few lemons.