Late run reds returning strong

Jul 29, 2019

        The late run of sockeye salmon to the Kenai River has returned surprisingly strong this summer, prompting the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to liberalize fishing time and limits for several fisheries.

The Kenai River personal use dip net fishery has been thrown wide open and will remain open 24 hours per day through 11:59 p.m. Wednesday(July 31, 2019) when the fishery closes by regulation.

The Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use Salmon Fishery Management Plan allows ADF&G to increase the hours open to dipnetting in the fishery to 24 hours per day if the department determines that Kenai River late-run sockeye salmon numbers will exceed 2.3 million fish. Based on in-season indicators, Fish and Game is projecting a run size in excess of that figure and anticipates the optimal escapement goal (700,000 - 1,400,000 sockeye salmon) will be achieved.

Fish and Game also is increasing the sport fishing bag and possession limit for sockeye, 16 inches or longer, in the Kenai River downstream of Skilak Lake to six per day and 12 in possession.