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Area Sport Fishing Reports
Northern Kenai

September 10, 2021

Fall Fishing Report 2021

* Just a reminder to all our anglers, please do your part to help slow the spread of Covid-19 by practicing social distancing while sport and personal use fishing and wearing a face covering when social distancing is not possible and if you are needing fishing supplies from your local store.

Freshwater Fishing

Kenai River

  • Lower Kenai River coho salmon fishing is good. Anglers using bait or spinners are reporting the highest success rates.
    • Incidentally hooked king salmon while fishing for other species may not be retained or possessed. King salmon caught may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately. Anglers should avoid fishing for coho salmon in areas of the river where king salmon are concentrated and to cut leaders or lines to avoid stressing incidentally hooked king salmon.
    • Please refer page 51 of the 2021 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for coho salmon bag and possession limits as general regulations changed on September 1.
  • Resident species fishing for rainbow trout and Dolly Varden is good within the Kenai River drainage.

Russian River

  • Russian River coho salmon, rainbow trout, and Dolly Varden fishing is good.
    • Please remember coho salmon 16 inches or longer that are removed from the water must be retained and becomes part of the bag limit (one per day and one in possession) of the person who originally hooked the fish. You must not remove a coho salmon 16 inches or longer from the water before releasing it.
    • Sport Fishing for coho salmon on the Russian River closes by regulation after Thursday, September 30.
    • For additional regulations for the Upper Kenai River, Sanctuary Area and Russian River, please see pages 59-61 of the 2021 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet.

Kasilof River

  • Kasilof River coho salmon fishing is good.
  • Anglers are reminded gear/tackle regulations change on September 16. Please see pages 70-71 of the 2021 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet.

Swanson River

  • Swanson River coho salmon sport fishing has been reported as good. Anglers should try and fish the incoming tide and high slack tide.

Personal Use Fishing

  • The deadline to report on your Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use permit was Sunday, August 15, 2021, for the Kasilof River gillnet, Kasilof, Kenai, and Susitna rivers dipnet, and Fish Creek dipnet fisheries. Participants are reminded they are required to report their harvests even if they did not fish, or if they fished but caught nothing.

Local Lakes

  • A new lake - John Hedberg Lake in Nikiski - was stocked with 700 catchable rainbow trout averaging between 9 and 14 inches in length on Thursday, September 2 at approximately 2:30 p.m.
  • Johnson and Sport lakes were stocked with approximately 175 to 200 rainbow trout brood stock averaging 24 inches in length on Thursday, September 2.
  • There are plenty of other fishing opportunities in Southcentral Alaska. This is the perfect time to visit locally stocked lakes.
  • Lake fishing for rainbow trout, Arctic char, Arctic grayling, and land locked salmon is good. Try fishing with dry or wet flies such as an egg sucking leech, bead head nymph, or mosquito pattern; small spoons and spinners size #0 or #2; or small bait under a bobber.
  • Not familiar with all the stocked lakes in the area? Check out the ADF&G brochure with locations, access, and other valuable information on Kenai Peninsula area lakes. More lake information can be found on the ADF&G Alaska Lakes Database.
  • Interested in recent stocking activities at lakes? Check out the ADF&G stocking webpage.

Emergency Orders

Please review the Emergency Orders and News Releases below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip.

Kenai River

  • Emergency Order 2-KS-1-53-21 increases the bag and possession limit for sockeye salmon from three per day and six in possession to six per day and 12 in possession in the Kenai River from its mouth upstream to an ADF&G marker located at the outlet of Skilak Lake effective through 11:59 p.m. Friday,
    December 31, 2021. No more than two may be coho salmon per day and in possession.

Kenai Peninsula Lakes

  • Emergency Order 2-NP-1-02-21 prohibits the retention of any species of fish in East Mackey, West Mackey, Sevena, Union, and Derks lakes for the 2021 season.
  • Emergency Order 2-DV-1-01-21 prohibits the retention of Arctic char/Dolly Varden in Stormy Lake for the 2021 season.

Don’t forget to purchase your 2021 sport fishing license and king stamp! Help maximize social distancing and purchase your 2021 sport fishing license and king stamp through the ADF&G online store and print it off from the comfort of your own home. Also, make sure to review Emergency Orders and the 2021 Southcentral Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for the area you are fishing before you head out.

For additional information, please contact the ADF&G Soldotna Area Office at (907) 262-9368.