Kenai River

Redoubt Reporter file photo

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimates Jim’s Landing sees about 42,000 visitors a year. It’s the only ramp for putting in and taking out of the Kenai River between Russian River and Skilak Lake.

But the infrastructure at the launch isn’t really up to the task.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Board members from the Kenai River Special Management Area are again floating the idea of a “sockeye salmon stamp” — a surcharge on sport fish licenses to fund infrastructure improvements on the Kenai River.

The board hasn’t ironed out details. But President Ted Wellman said a stamp would help with much-needed repairs to well-worn facilities.

Debbie Boege-Tobin

Cook Inlet belugas used to follow salmon through the Kenai River in the summer. Now, they’re mostly just spotted in other seasons.

Researchers from NOAA Fisheries aren’t sure why. It’s one of many questions they’re asking about the endangered population to better understand why the belugas aren’t rebounding and how the agency can support their recovery.

A study featuring a relatively new DNA sampling technique might help them find answers.

Redoubt Reporter

Kenai River sport fishermen can start the season under general regulations.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is projecting an early run of about 4,400 large king salmon, longer than 34 inches. That’s just below the recent five-year average of 4,700 fish, and about half of the 35-year average of 9,000 fish.

Redoubt Reporter file photo

July and August are the height of the Kenai River sportfishing season, but fishermen are going to have to work a little harder for their catches for the first couple weeks of August.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced that bait and multiple hooks will be prohibited on the Kenai River from the mouth to the outlet of Skilak Lake starting Saturday at midnight. The change lasts through August 15.