Kenai Chinook Estimates, Indices and Inseason Run Summaries

Location: Kenai River (Chinook)
Species: Chinook - Early Run
Method: Sonar

The selected years are color-coded in the graphs below:

  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016
  • 2015
Daily Counts
Cumulative

Description: In 2015 the department began managing Kenai River king salmon runs using an ARIS sonar station located at river mile 14. In 2017 The Department modified the Kenai River king salmon escapement goals from goals based on king salmon of all sizes, to escapement goals based on large king salmon (fish over 34 inches) only. The new early-run king salmon optimal escapement goal range is 3,900 to 6,600 large king salmon (> 34 inches). The new late-run king salmon sustainable escapement goal range is 13,500 to 27,000 large king salmon (> 34 inches). The ARIS sonar counts found on this page are the daily and seasonal cumulative passage estimates of the number of large king salmon passing the sonar site. Additionally, the past years counts displayed on this page have been converted to large fish counts for comparison. These estimated numbers of large king salmon passing the sonar site are the primary tool for the Kenai River king salmon assessment program that also includes a sport angler harvest survey, and a netting program. The data gathered in these assessments are used together to determine king salmon run strength. This data in conjunction with Fishery Management Plans, allows fishery managers to determine if emergency order regulation changes to the fisheries are needed during the season to help ensure that the escapement goals are achieved. These abundance assessments as well as information about the status of the run and inseason management actions can be viewed via this website on the above tabs. Information is also available by telephone at (907)262-9097.

Optimal Escapement Goal for Chinook - Early Run: 3,900 - 6,600 (Graphed above)
Sustainable Escapement Goal for Chinook - Late Run: 13,500 - 27,000

Contact: Northern Kenai Sport Fish Area Manager,
(907) 260-2920

Weekly Sportfish Fishing Report for this area

46 records returned for the years selected. Dashes indicate days with no count.
[Export results in Excel format or JSON format]

Date
2019
Count
2019
Cumulative
2019
Cumulative
2018
Cumulative
2017
Cumulative
2016
Notes for
2019
Jun-30 67 4,186 3,000 7,237 6,391  
Jun-29 95 4,119 2,903 7,128 6,241  
Jun-28 49 4,024 2,855 7,001 6,030  
Jun-27 97 3,975 2,734 6,917 5,902  
Jun-26 103 3,878 2,668 6,790 5,739  
Jun-25 118 3,775 2,614 6,621 5,636  
Jun-24 103 3,657 2,542 6,507 5,534  
Jun-23 91 3,554 2,494 6,423 5,374  
Jun-22 73 3,463 2,447 6,332 5,237  
Jun-21 67 3,390 2,387 6,242 5,152  
Jun-20 147 3,323 2,326 6,109 5,025  
Jun-19 91 3,176 2,267 6,043 4,944  
Jun-18 74 3,085 2,243 5,922 4,853  
Jun-17 67 3,011 2,182 5,663 4,720  
Jun-16 43 2,944 2,116 5,470 4,593  
Jun-15 127 2,901 2,098 5,277 4,412  
Jun-14 103 2,774 2,013 4,963 4,234  
Jun-13 218 2,671 1,892 4,589 3,957  
Jun-12 121 2,453 1,820 4,282 3,674  
Jun-11 206 2,332 1,742 4,010 3,403  
Jun-10 145 2,126 1,609 3,726 3,162  
Jun-09 163 1,981 1,488 3,473 2,993  
Jun-08 157 1,818 1,385 3,298 2,785  
Jun-07 137 1,661 1,282 3,027 2,574  
Jun-06 220 1,524 1,161 2,820 2,249  
Jun-05 230 1,304 1,041 2,619 2,034  
Jun-04 176 1,074 932 2,335 1,907  
Jun-03 199 898 805 2,135 1,684  
Jun-02 115 699 702 1,767 1,503  
Jun-01 127 584 587 1,495 1,382  
May-31 48 457 478 1,260 1,243  
May-30 66 409 417 1,091 1,026  
May-29 60 343 338 892 844  
May-28 80 283 290 741 675  
May-27 47 203 241 650 434  
May-26 36 156 192 552 356  
May-25 36 120 186 422 265  
May-24 36 84 174 319 229  
May-23 24 48 138 259 199  
May-22 6 24 96 168 133  
May-21 18 18 66 150 121  
May-20 -6 0 48 144 91 One Large Target observed going downstream at the RM14 Site
May-19 6 6 42 108 49  
May-18 0 0 18 66 36  
May-17 0 0 0 36 30 Reduced Eulachon passage. Smolt still observed
May-16 0 0 0 6 12 Eulachon and smolt prevalent

Non-Sonar Tools

Early Run Netting Project CPUE Index

The Net Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE) is an index of the numbers of Chinook salmon moving into the Kenai River and is based on the rate at which Chinook salmon are captured by the netting project conducted at river mile 8.6.


Early Run Sport CPUE Index

The Sport Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE) is an index of the numbers of Chinook salmon in the lower Kenai River and is based on the success rate of anglers fishing downstream of the Sterling Highway Bridge Crossing in Soldotna.

Early Run Netting Project Large Fish CPUE Index

The Net Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE) is an index of the numbers of Chinook salmon moving into the Kenai River and is based on the rate at which Chinook salmon are captured by the netting project conducted at the sonar station located at river mile 8.6.

Weekly Sportfish Fishing Report for this area


Early Run Kenai River Chinook Inseason Summary for Fri. May 31

KENAI RIVER EARLY RUN CHINOOK SALMON INSEASON SUMMARY #2

FRIDAY MAY 31

Chinook salmon run update:

The Kenai River King salmon sonar began counting on May 16, 2019.  The total estimated passage as of May 30th is 343 large king salmon. The historic quarter point of the run on June 4th, is generally the earliest the department has sufficient data to interpret run strength.  The preseason forecast for the 2019 early-run of king salmon is 3,168 large fish (> 75 cm mid-eye-to-tail-fork-length or ~ 34 inches in total length). The optimal escapement goal for the early-run is 3,900-5,600 large fish. In response to the below average forecast, ADF&G restricted the Kenai River king salmon fishery to catch and release only with unbaited, single hook, artificial lure, and any king salmon caught may not be removed from the water prior to release (EO # 2-KS-1-09-19). ADF&G will closely monitor the run as it develops. 

If inseason abundance indicators warrant further management actions these will likely occur around June 4th

The next update will be on Thursday, June 6th.

Fishery Update:  

Fishing success has been reported as fair in the lower river as it is early in the season and water temperatures have been below average up until the past few days. The ADF&G creel survey and netting programs began operations on May 16. Data collected so far from these projects indicates below average CPUE’s for netting of all sizes of Chinook salmon. The creel survey indicates average to above average success rates for catch and release fishing on the Kenai River. Water levels continue raise and water clarity has diminished which could affect angler success for this coming weekend.

The preseason outlook for the 2019 early-run can be found at:

http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/fishing/pdfs/sport/byarea/southcentral/2019KenaiEarlyRunOutlook.pdf

Water Conditions: 

Water levels in the Kenai River are above average and water temperature is average.

CFS at Soldotna Bridge was 6,220 on May 29.

CFS at Skilak Lake Outlet was 4,710 on May 29.

CFS at Cooper Landing was 4,170 on May 29.

Water Temperature was 47.1 degrees Fahrenheit at the sonar site on May 20.

This information was compiled based on raw and historical data for inseason management purposes.

Final data is subject to change.