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  Fishing Report  
  Michael Booz, Area Management Biologist
(907) 235-1757,

Area Sport Fishing Reports
Southern Kenai/LCI

September 7, 2023

Fall 2023 Report-Final

ADF&G News

ADF&G is mobile. You can purchase and display your fishing license and king stamp, record your annual harvest (i.e. king salmon), access sport fishing regulations and locations, and so much more on your mobile device. Download the ADF&G Mobile App today.

Freshwater Fishing


Coho salmon fishing in the lower Kenai Peninsula streams is still poor to fair but will be wrapping up around mid-September. High water conditions have been high and muddy which has limited success. You may target them in the lower two miles of the streams with unbaited, single-hook, artificial lures starting September 1. Size 3 or 4 spinners or heavily weighted flies are the most effective gear.


  • Expect the steelhead run to reach its peak in late September. Fishing success will vary with water levels after that, which can be monitored with the Anchor River hydrograph.
  • A well-presented bead pegged under a bobber is a great way to entice a steelhead bite. Beads are typically fished with a fly rod. Add more split shot to sink the bead if the current is too fast to let the bead plink along the bottom and be sure to adjust the depth of your bobber or strike indicator as needed. Fishing with a marabou jig and bobber is a great way to get started targeting steelhead. Plugs and swinging flies may also work well. Pink and purple are typical colors of tackle used to fish for steelhead.

Dolly Varden

  • Dolly Varden are beginning to adopt their colorful fall spawning patterns. There are fewer Dollies in the lower Kenai Peninsula streams than in recent years, but anglers may still catch them while fishing for steelhead.
  • Dollies also love a well-presented (i.e. dead-drifted) bead, and will bite small spinners, spoons, and flies too.

Saltwater Fishing


Halibut fishing will continue to be fair over the fall months at locations in Kachemak Bay and Cook Inlet. Large jigs or herring on a circle hook are effective for halibut fishing. Consider the tide, and be sure to fish near slack, especially if the tides are large.

King Salmon

  • The fall months in Kachemak Bay typically offer some of the best king salmon trolling of the year. The feeder king salmon tend to move around the bay, but bait can concentrate them in larger schools.
  • Locations in the outer bay can have great fishing when the weather allows, including Fourth of July Creek, Silver Ridge, and Bluff Point. The inner bay has lots of great spots closer by including Bear Cove, Glacier Spit, the islands (Yukon Island area), and the green can near the Homer Spit.
  • Herring pegged in a head clip fished behind a flasher is the classic setup, but spoons with and without flashers work very well, along with a variety of other tackle like hoochies or plugs. Try trolling the same direction as the tide and try setting the gear at various depths between 10 and 100 feet.

Tanner Crab

  • The Kachemak Bay Tanner crab sport fishery (visit the online store for permits starting 9/18) will be open from October 1, 2023, through February 29, 2024. A pot or ring net may be used to target Tanner crab.
  • The highest concentrations of Tanner crab tend to be found west of the Homer spit in 300 and 500 feet of water. Pots need to be set in deep water to be successful. Use bait such as fish carcasses secured in the pots.

Emergency Orders

Please review the emergency orders and advisory announcements below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip.

  • Emergency Order 2-SS-7-57-23 open snagging in the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon waters (excluding the Homer Harbor) for the remainder of the season.
  • Emergency Order 2-RF-7-20-23 reduces the rockfish bag and possession limits in Cook Inlet to three per day and six in possession of which only one per day, two in possession can be nonpelagic.

Don’t forget to purchase your 2023 sport fishing license and king stamp! You can purchase your 2023 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, advisory announcements, and the 2023 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for the area you are fishing in before you head out.

For additional information, please contact the ADF&G Homer office at (907) 235-8191.


Lower Cook Inlet Area Archives for:
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