Division of Sport Fish
Dave Rutz, Director

Anchorage Headquarters Office
333 Raspberry Road
Anchorage, AK 99518

Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Doug Vincent-Lang, Commissioner

P.O. Box 115526
Juneau, AK 99811-5526

Advisory Announcement
(Released: July 13, 2020 - Expired: July 31, 2020)

CONTACT: Colton Lipka
Area Management Biologist
(907) 262-9368

Lower Kenai River King Salmon Fishing 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 restricting the king salmon fishery on the Kenai River drainage to catch-and-release only effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, July 15 through 11:59 p.m. Friday, July 31, 2020. 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.

“The 2020 king salmon runs across the Kenai Peninsula consistently and significantly underperformed preseason expectations resulting in restrictions and closures of inriver and marine sport fisheries,” stated Area Management Biologist Colton Lipka. “Through July 12, 2020, approximately 1,699 large king salmon, have passed the river mile 13.7 king salmon sonar. 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.

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