South Passage Outfitters
South Passage Outfitters
A family style fishing resort in remote Southeast Alaska
Welcome to Gull Cove
From our four cozy cabins to our infamous cookhouse and gathering place, you’ll enjoy our unique family atmosphere. We provide an experience you just can’t get from larger resorts in Alaska. Escape from crowded resorts and cruise ships, thumb your nose at chartered tours on crowded boats, and experience Alaska – the way it was meant to be. At South Passage Outfitters we offer several ways for you to explore the Icy Strait of Alaska on your own. Whether you are fishing, kayaking, or camping, we’re your base camp for adventure and by the end of the week you’ll feel like a local. We book trips by the week. Arrive on Sunday morning and find yourself on the water fighting a fish that same day. Explore Icy Strait and Cross Sound at your own pace throughout the week. We provide a vacuum packer and 6 upright freezers so that you can process your fresh caught salmon and halibut as soon as possible. Once you’ve got your home pack, take some time to do some whale watching because we are a hot spot for humpback whales who have migrated north to feed on krill right outside of Gull Cove, and if you’re lucky, you might spot one from your cabin porch. Explore the beauty of the Tongass National Forest and bring your camera to snap a few photos of the unique wildflowers and wildlife of Southeast Alaska. We provide the tools, you provide the adventure!
Located in the heart of southeast Alaska, South Passage Outfitters is ground zero for the best fishing and sea kayaking in the world.
Peggy McDonald and Dennis Montgomery met in San Francisco in 1984. Since then, they have spent every summer in Alaska. Dennis has commercial fished out of Elfin Cove since 1978 and in 1996 they opened the business in Gull Cove. Their three daughters grew up driving skiffs, fishing, camping and are a great resource for finding out where to maximize your fun and adventure.
Halibut are available all season only a few minutes from our dock. We suggest you anchor up in 60 feet or deeper depending on how much current is running. Best to let one rod fish bait just laying on the bottom and have the other rod active with a jig of some sort. Halibut smell the “scent trail” of the bait and come to you if you have the patience to wait for them. Smaller fish show up first so let them go. Larger fish generally take more time to find you because they are further dispersed than smaller fish. Drifting along looking to hit a fish on the head is far more challenging and generally not very successful unless you know an exact hole where they hang out. Serious sport fishermen can always come up with a Halibut any time of the year. You can freeze your prime catch and pack it home in our fish boxes.
Great salmon fishing starts 20 feet from the dock and just gets better. We have local runs of King Salmon in May and June with summer runs hitting the coast right through September. Cohos, Sockeye, Chums, and Pinks pass through during the months from mid June to September and are fished in about 20 different locations. You will fish the local hot spots around Gull Cove and Cross Sound, or you will skiff to Icy Point or Cape Cross on the outside coast.Troll most of the time but mooching salmon is often effective in this area because there are so many currents.
We have shrimp pots available for you to set and pull on your own schedule. We suggest that they be pulled and re-baited every other day. The most common catch is the coonstripe shrimp. Coonstripes usually live in areas with smooth mud and sandy bottoms at depths ranging from 30 to 300 feet. We know just the spot to find them. Sometimes guests bring in enough for dinner and sometimes just enough for a snack. We like to try eating them in a few different ways, raw, boiled, or as a tempura so take your pick and we’ll help prepare your delicious catch.
Enjoy one of our four cabins as your own. Each cabin has 2 futons, a heater or a woodstove, a kitchenette, shower, and toilet. Relax on your covered porch and take in the splendid view of the Fairweather Range or a passing fishing boat. Watch the gulls feed in the tide rip or listen to the sea otters calling to each other. Named – This, That, The Other, and Another – these cabins offer distinctly different views and layouts.
Our 18 foot Lunds with 40 hp Yamaha outboards and 4 hp kickers are the perfect combination. They are small enough to be fast and economical, but big enough to be fast and safe. Keep contact with us at Gull Cove and your partners in the other boats with installed VHF radios. Keep track of your depth with Garmin fathometers and your location with a GPS.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served in the Cookhouse – or we can help you pack a lunch for a long day adventure. We cook fresh seafood and serve greens from our garden. The cookie jar is always full and during berry season we bake cobblers and pies with wild strawberries, blueberries and nagoon berries. Please let us know if you have any dietary restrictions so we can accommodate them. Also, if you have some extra time in Juneau, there is a Fred Meyer grocery store next to the airport – in case you forgot something or want to pick up libations.