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  Fishing Report  
  Jenny Gates, Assistant Area Management Biologist
(907) 262-9368,

Area Sport Fishing Reports
Northern Kenai

September 15, 2023

ADF&G News

  • The Soldotna ADF&G office offers a fishing rod loaner program and has a limited number of salmon fishing poles and a limited amount of tackle anglers can borrow for up to three days. This is a first come, first served program and fishing poles cannot be reserved. For more information, check out the Rod Loaner Program webpage or contact Jenny Gates at (907) 262-9368.
  • ADF&G is mobile. You can purchase and display your fishing license and king stamp, record your annual harvest (i.e., king salmon, rainbow/steelhead trout, sharks), access sport fishing regulations and locations, and so much more on your mobile device. Download the ADF&G Mobile App today.

Freshwater Fishing

Kenai River

  • Kenai River is high and fishing from the shore may be difficult.
  • Resident species fishing for rainbow trout and Dolly Varden in the middle and upper Kenai River and Kenai River tributaries has been fair to good.
  • Coho salmon fishing on the Lower Kenai River is slow due to high water and is expected to be fair for the next couple of weeks as the river returns to normal fall flows. Bait and multiple hooks are allowed up to river mile 46.
  • Coho salmon fishing on the upper Kenai River is fair. Anglers are reminded that the bag and possession limit for coho salmon in the Russian River Sanctuary Area and that area of the Kenai River upstream of the Powerline near Sportsman’s Landing is 1 per day and 1 in possession and in other waters of the Upper Kenai River it is 3 per day and 3 in possession (in combination). Please refer pages 59-60 of the Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for more information.

Kasilof River

  • Coho salmon fishing is fair.
  • Anglers are reminded gear/tackle regulations change on September 16. Please see pages 70-71 of the 2023 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet.

Russian River

  • Coho salmon fishing is fair. Anglers are reminded that bag and possession limits are 1 per day and 1 in possession. Coho salmon that are removed from the water must be retained and becomes part of the bag limit of the person who originally hooked the fish. You must not remove coho salmon 16 inches or longer from the water before releasing it. Sport fishing for coho salmon on the Russian River closes by regulation on Sunday, October 1st.
  • Rainbow trout and Dolly Varden fishing is good.
  • The Russian River Recreational Area is closed to all traffic and users due to road construction on the access road. This closure includes access to Lower Russian Lake Trailhead and the campground.
  • The Russian River Ferry Service located near Sportman’s Landing is closed for the season.

Resurrection Creek

Coho salmon fishing is reported as fair at Resurrection Creek in Hope but should improve over the next couple of weeks.

Swanson River

Swanson River coho salmon fishing is reported as good. Anglers should try and fish the incoming high tide and outgoing high tide.

Local Lakes

  • Elephant (Spirit) Lake access gate is closed at this time and will be closed through September 30.
  • Lake fishing for rainbow trout, Arctic char, Arctic grayling, and land locked salmon is good to excellent this time of year. 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 publication 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.
  • Many local lakes have been stocked with rainbow trout and coho salmon fingerling recently. For specific lake stocking information including species stocked and numbers of fish stocked, directions, bathymetric maps, and amenities, please visit the ADF&G Alaska Lakes Database.

Emergency Orders

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

Local Lakes

  • Emergency Order 2-NP-1-04-23 prohibits the retention of any species of fish in East Mackey, West Mackey and Derks lakes for the 2023 season.
  • Emergency Order 2-DV-1-03-23 establishes a bag and possession limit of Arctic char/Dolly Varden in Stormy Lake of one fish, less than 16 inches in length for the 2023 season.

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 Soldotna Area Office at (907) 262-9368.


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