Area Sport Fishing Reports
Salmon - Kenai River drainage
Downstream of Skilak Lake, sockeye salmon fishing usually winds down quickly in the Kenai River by the middle of August. In the upper Kenai River (above Skilak Lake) and in the Russian River, early to middle of- August is usually the best time to catch sockeye salmon.
Coho salmon start showing up in the lower Kenai River in late July and early August, continuing through the season closure. Anglers are reminded that the coho salmon bag and possession limits, seasonal closures, and regulations vary depending on the waters you are fishing. Please review the Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for regulations specific to coho salmon fishing. In the Russian River area, coho fishing is usually good around the third week of August, and peaks during the second week of September.
On even-number years, ample numbers of pink salmon provide an excellent angling opportunity during August and into September. Most people targeting pinks concentrate on the intertidal areas of the Kenai River from Swiftwater Park and Boat Launch area in Soldotna downstream to Cunningham Park in Kenai. Check the Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet for a map depicting public access locations to fish.
Salmon - Kasilof River
Sockeye salmon fishing on the Kasilof River is usually subsided by the first week of August. Coho salmon start showing up in August, and peak around the second to third week of August. This is a small run, but fun fishing. Bait and treble/multiple hooks are allowed through September 15.
Rainbow Trout and Dolly Varden - Flowing Waters
Rainbow trout fishing in August on the upper Kenai River can be slow to fair. Sometimes enticing a rainbow trout with a full stomach of salmon eggs to hit your lure is a challenge, but many sport fishing anglers find that's part of the fun. This is the time of year when you may have to try every trick in your tackle box to entice a strike. Dolly Varden fishing in August can also be challenging, depending on where and when you fish.
There are 25 lakes throughout the northern Kenai Peninsula area that are stocked with rainbow trout, Arctic char, and landlocked Chinook or coho salmon. Fishing is usually excellent in these lakes in August. Try using small spinners, flies, or, where legal, fresh shrimp or preserved salmon roe. Publications describing these lakes is available at ADF&G offices in Anchorage, Soldotna, and Homer. Make sure to check the ADF&G fish stocking and the ADF&G Alaska Lakes Database (ALDAT) webpages for up-to-date lake stocking information.
All other lakes of the Kenai River drainage are open to fishing in July, including Crescent Lake and Hidden Lake. Bait may be used in all lakes except in a few areas of Kenai Lake. Check the Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulations Summary booklet carefully!