sportfishing

Elizabeth Earl / KDLL

Commercial fishing is underway across Upper Cook Inlet. Some fishermen to the north of Kenai have had their nets in the water since May, but permit holders in the setnet and drift gillnet fisheries are just getting into the heat of the season as the Kenai and Kasilof sockeye runs pick up. That’s where the majority of the harvest is.

Elizabeth Earl / KDLL

The Anchor River and Deep Creek will close to king salmon fishing through July 15 starting Saturday. Too few kings are coming back to the Anchor to justify a sportfishery there, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Outer Coast Adventures

The North Pacific Fisheries Management Council approved a proposal in a special meeting May 15 that would make going on a halibut charter more attractive to Alaskans this year, as a way to help mitigate the impacts COVID-19 is having on the industry. 

Councilmember Andy Mezirow, who owns a charter business in Seward, motioned to enact a proposal that will relax restrictions on charter operators in area 3A, Southcentral, and 2C, Southeast.

“Clearly no amount of regulatory change is going to make this a profitable year but this action, in conjunction with federal assistance, will contribute to a coordinated effort to help Alaska charter operators make it through this pandemic,” Mezirow said.

Redoubt Reporter

The Alaska Board of Fisheries heard two days of public comments over the weekend, weighing in on the 171 Upper Cook Inlet fisheries proposals it is considering this week and next in Anchorage.

As usual, it’s a tug-of-war over fish allocation, not only between commercial, sport and personal-use fisheries, but between regions, as well. The Matanuska-Susitna area is making a concerted effort to convince the board to regulate for more fish to get past mid-inlet commercial fisheries to upper-inlet streams.

Peter Matisse, of the Susitna Valley Fish and Game Advisory Committee, advocated for a conservation corridor, which would keep commercial drift-net fishing closer to shore, the thought being that this would allow passage of salmon heading to northern streams.

“Biologists are just beginning to understand that many of these fish travel through these corridors to great harvesting press and struggle to make it to the last destination, of the Su,” Matisse sai

NOAA

          The Alaska Department of Fish and Game says king salmon are present in good numbers in the Ninilchik River, though anglers need to double-check their catch before taking it out of the water.

The Department says both hatchery and wild run fish are abundant, but that it is only the hatchery kings that can be kept. They can be identified by the absence of the adipose fin, which should be checked before taking the fish out of the water.

Early king run trickling back to Kenai river

May 30, 2019
Alaska Department of Fish and Game

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game began counting the early run a couple weeks ago and as of Wednesday, 343 chinook had gone past sonar counters. That number is on pace with two of the last three years. The early return was a little higher at this point last year.

Emily Kwong/KCAW

 

A surprise vote by the Alaska Board of Fisheries Friday caught the fishing community on the Kenai Peninsula off guard. Triennial meetings regarding Upper Cook Inlet fishing issues haven’t been held on the Peninsula in nearly two decades. The board recently voted to begin moving those meetings around on a rotating basis, including holding the 2020 session on the Peninsula. But after Friday’s vote, that two-week meeting will be held once again in Anchorage.

 

 


Here’s something we haven’t shared in the Central Kenai Peninsula sportsfishing report before. Angling for salmon on the Kenai River is exclusively fly fishing at the moment. The vast majority of the river is still closed from end-to-end, but, in that portion around the confluence of the Russian River, you can try your hand at fly casting.

Both Areas A and B are fly-fishing only. They are bounded by the power line crossing the river on the west end and ADF&G markers on the east. Sportsman’s Landing at Mile 55 is about in the middle.

  It’ll be a few more weeks before you can head down to Cunningham Park or other favorite fishing spot and expect to hook a fish reliably. But, if you are a junior angler and you’re at the Sports, Rec, and Trade Show this weekend, you’re pretty much guaranteed to get your limit. KDLL’s Jay Barrett spoke with Kelly Martin about the show. She is the CEO the Kenai Peninsula Association of Realtors, which presents it each year in the Soldotna Sports Complex.

Patch up your waders and fish out your fishing line, because king salmon season is right around the corner. But make sure you’re aware of regulation changes before heading to the Kenai River this year.


As the Alaska Board of Fisheries begins its work session in Anchorage today, it will consider requests from the Kenai Peninsula Borough and cities of Kenai and Soldotna to meet on the Kenai Peninsula in the future.

The board considers Upper Cook Inlet management issues every three years. It’s going on 20 years since the board held a full meeting on the central peninsula, despite being home to some of the largest salmon-producing rivers and associated fisheries in the region.

First 'unrestricted' king season in years

Aug 8, 2017

The Kenai River king salmon season closed at the end of July, and by all accounts, both the early and late runs were successful for both anglers and escapement.


The sockeye run continues its slow burn into the Kenai River.

Sluggish sockeye return slows down commercial fleet

Jul 18, 2017

Commercial fishing for the drift and set-net fleets was generous last week, but things look to be slowing down a bit.

Fish & Game allows bait for early run Kenai kings

Jun 22, 2017

The early king salmon run on the Kenai River has come in well within recently approved management goals.

New authors talk about writing, publishing and connecting with readers. Ninilchik's Mike Chihuly wrote about his life as a fire chief and fishing charter captain in "Alaska Fish and Fire." Kasilof's Joseph Robertia recently published "Life with Forty Dogs: Misadventures with Runts, Rejects, Retirees and Rescues," about the dog kennel he runs with his wife, and their successful mushing career with dogs other mushers didn't want.