Emergency Orders and News Releases
Sport Fishing

Region 2-Southcentral News Release

(Released: July 16, 2018 - Expired: July 31, 2018)

Division of Sport Fish
Tom Brookover, Director
Anchorage Headquarters Office
333 Raspberry Road
Anchorage, AK 99518


Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Sam Cotten, Commissioner
P.O. Box 115526
Juneau, AK 99811-5526
www.adfg.alaska.gov


Contact: Matt Miller, Cook Inlet Management Coordinator
(907) 262-9368

Kenai River King Salmon Limited to Catch-and-Release Only

(Soldotna) – In favor of protecting returning king salmon and increased fishing opportunities in the future, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) is implementing the following sport fishing regulation restriction on the Kenai River drainage effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, July 18 through 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, July 31, 2018. The retention of king salmon is prohibited while sport fishing on the Kenai River from its mouth upstream to an ADF&G regulatory marker located approximately 300 yards downstream from the mouth of Slikok Creek. In addition, only one unbaited, single-hook, artificial lure may be used when sport fishing in these waters. King salmon may not be retained or possessed, may not be removed from the water, and must be released immediately.

Sport fishing for king salmon remains closed in waters of the Kenai River drainage from an ADF&G regulatory marker located approximately 300 yards downstream from the mouth of Slikok Creek, upstream to an ADF&G marker located at the outlet of Skilak Lake.

This sport fishing regulation restriction supersedes the closure issued on June 18, 2018, which closed waters of the Kenai River drainage from an ADF&G regulatory marker located approximately 300 yards downstream from the mouth of Slikok Creek, upstream to an ADF&G marker located at the outlet of Skilak Lake.

This sport fishing regulation restriction also supersedes the restriction issued on June 21, 2018, which prohibited the use of bait while sport fishing in the Kenai River from its mouth upstream to an ADF&G regulatory marker located approximately 300 yards downstream from the mouth of Slikok Creek

“The 2018 king salmon runs throughout Cook Inlet have consistently and significantly underperformed preseason expectations resulting in restrictions and closures of inriver and marine sport fisheries,” stated Cook Inlet Management Coordinator Matt Miller. “As of July 14, 2018, approximately 2,770 king salmon 75 cm (29.53 inches) mid-eye to tail fork and longer, have passed the river mile 13.7 king salmon sonar. Historically the quarter point of the late run arrives around July 17. Without further restrictions to harvest, the goal for Kenai River late-run king salmon is not expected to be achieved.”

ADF&G staff will be closely monitoring this fishery as the season progresses and additional actions may be taken if necessary.

In conjunction with this restriction, a sport fishing regulation restriction was issued prohibiting the retention of king salmon while sport fishing on the Kasilof River downstream of the Sterling Highway Bridge. In addition, only one unbaited, single-hook, artificial lure may be used when fishing for king salmon in these waters.

For additional information, please contact Cook Inlet Management Coordinator Matt Miller at (907) 262-9368.