Timing Your Sockeye Fishing on the Russian River
You've probably heard AOJ emphasize the need for traveling anglers to do their homework and research out the best times to plan their fishing expeditions to Alaska. And our database is filled with information in many forms which can assist anglers in making an educated decision. But as with any anadromous fishery, variations in arrival of the fish and the numbers which return are a frequent and routine expectation.
Each year will provide some difference from the past but within specific parameters, these salmon runs will arrive and decline during a given window of opportunity. You can see by the Early Run chart below that this year has had some unusual expectations compared to the average run characteristics recorded over time. This makes it a bit more challenging to time so those with longer periods of fishing opportunity for this run will have the best chances to make the most of it.
The early run is managed for a range of 22,000 - 44,000 fish escapement for spawning and often there are two fish caught for every one that makes it through the weir counter. So it provides a good harvest of fish and is the earliest sockeye run on the Kenai Peninsula. Note in the salmon run chart below that individual years can have very different characteristics than the long term average trend. For planning purposes its always advisable to use the long term trend line to plan your fishing trips to the Russian River.
The late run of sockeye salmon is typically the strongest of the two in shear size and in many years has achieved 60-100,000 fish escapement numbers after the harvest. With a majority of this run occurring in August, fishing can be a little less crowded because the Kasilof and Kenai Rivers have been providing a lot of sockeye fishing opportunities without the need to travel very far. And many visitors have left already leaving this fishery much to Alaskans.
The Russian River Sockeye Fisheries are a remarkable achievement in Fish & Game management of a resource that is in such demand and so accessible. And for visitors and Alaskans alike, it provides an annual harvest of as many as 100,000 salmon each year. Despite the crowds its a fishery that is one to put on your list if you are on the Kenai Peninsula.
Page 1...Rushin' To The Russian - Intro
Page 2...Location & Access
Page 5...Setting Your Clock & Calendar
All Content Copyright ©1996-2012