Alaskan Anglers Fishing Reports

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ATTENTION: AK DIPPER from 7/19 Report

It appears your dipnet handle may be at the Soldotna State Troopers office in the lost and found. Here is what has been passed on today.

RE Missing Handle: Just talked to Dennis. He said he left the handle with the State Troopers and that they have a lost and found in Soldotna. Just have to call them to claim it. I hope this is the correct handle!

Please confirm that you have read this message so I can remove it. Thanks, KK

Thanks so much "good samaritan" for following through on this and providing the additional information.


ANGLER:  Klondike Kid n AKJake reporting
TRIP DATE:  7/29 7am - 1pm
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River dipnetting - Boat
SPECIES:  Reds and Pinks

REPORT: JUST A QUICKIE REPORT for those interested in the last couple days of Kenai dip season. Took my cousin's son out for a one day ditch effort this morning. Dropped my cousin in the mud with my 16' net while Josh and I worked the boat. Started just before 7am. Pulled out at 1'ish at the absolute bottom of the tide. Had to run the trailer off the end of the concrete into river bottom to get the bunks a half inch below the surface for boat loading. Tailgate was in the water. Never do that again! No mud on the bottom of the ramp due to traffic keeping it stirred up and washed off. Won't be like that in a few weeks.

Anyway, we kept 35 reds (2/3 were the big bruisers, 1/3 Kasilof size) and 22 pinks. Rolled a lot of pinks out of the nets. Only a few dozen boats out there. Pretty mellow, sunny, calm, perfect. Got a little busier at 11 working the sand bar but there were enough fish to bag 1-4 on each run. 50-50 today pinks and reds. If all you want is reds, just put in the time, a full day. Things were slow but steady from the start and better at low water.

I kept a few for myself, rest to cuz. Got to get back to processing. IS IT WORTH TRYING WEDNESDAY AND/OR THURSDAY? You won't catch any fish sitting on the COUCH! Give it a shot. You are Alaskans! Take what you get, enjoy the 75 degree weather here on WEDNESDAY!!!! Good Luck.

ANGLER:  3s1k
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Ship Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Caught the outgoing tide at Ship Creek between the street and railroad bridge. Combat fishing for 6 hours non stop but the fishing was good. Hooked about 10 of them, some in the mouth but got loose and some foul hooked. Me and my father in law ended up with 2 each and I finally caught my first Silver.

Just a note, everyone were being good sports. A lot of tangled lines fighting to hook that one silver trying to get through. Plus the weather was nice and the fighter jets flying over us. Great day for fishing.

ANGLER:  Fishak
TRIP DATE:  7/28
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Went out dip netting tonight, weren't expecting to get much. We ended up getting 20 from 530-730PM. Pretty good considering the counts. We left when it started pouring. Hopefully some more come in at the end of the week. Tight Lines.

[AOJ: THURSDAY is the last day of dipnet season for the KENAI RIVER PERSONAL USE FISHERY. Kasilof River remains open thru August 7. So after Thursday the Kenai reds will be up to the sporties to get.]

ANGLER:  AKsummit
TRIP DATE:  7/28
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Eklutna Tailrace
SPECIES:  Coho

REPORT:

Arrived to the Tailrace at 7am, we were throwing vibrax. By 9:30am, we had two silvers pulled in between our party of three. Such a different. Saw a couple spawned out reds turning. Some other folks were hooking up some coho down at the mouth area but that was all from 7-9. Bottom line, if you're gonna go and want to come away with something, go early. Most were throwing bait, with mixed success. Seeming like it's going to be a good coho year in the valley. Question about the Matsu area regs though. Says if you take your bag possession of coho, you may not fish any waters for any species where there are salmon. Why so strict for these waters? Or am I mistaken that you can fish Kenai for salmon and then go for trout in the Russian?

[AOJ: The reg applies whether you limit in the Valley and then drive back to Anchorage (Ship Creek) or drive to the Peninsula and are around all the rivers there that contain salmon. (You are allowed to fish lakes for trout and char since they don't contain a spawning run of salmon that would be open to fishing.) Regs are designed to protect fisheries and that often includes trying to prevent anglers from engaging in activities that could result in harvesting over your daily limit or adding additional mortality to fish from catch and release after your limit. There is nothing against the law to catch and release before you fill your limit, as long as you don't remove a coho salmon from the water before releasing it.]

ANGLER:  Aksalmonfisher
TRIP DATE:  7/28
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Eklutna Tailrace
SPECIES:  Silvers and sockeye

REPORT: Got on the water around 7:30 and within the hour had a nice bright silver on but lost him after he made a run through lines that were in the water.. Upsetting, but with a full freezer already I can live with it. Fished for a few more hours and nothing was showing up so I went upriver to my favorite spot that normally has reds in it now, but nothing. Might be another week before they show up since they are hitting Jim Creek pretty decent now. Went back to the Tailrace and flipped a bit longer with 3 red mottled beads and hooked a nice bright silver and a few reds. Also managed a little jack. I'd say another week or so before the silvers plug the Knik. Fishing today was pretty slow but fish were moving so be patient they are there!

ANGLER:  Kardinal_84
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Whiskey Gulch
SPECIES:  Cyclop Halibut and some dolliles

REPORT: I took two guests from Japan out fishing this weekend. We give Whiskey Gulch a go off the Kayaks. Flat calm to start, three footers as the tide turned. Back to one footers at noon. They had never fished halibut or from a kayak. Day 1 the weather was flat calm as we launch prior to the low slack. I managed 5 fish landed in 5 hours keeping a 30 pounder and a 15 pounder. My guests shakes off a couple of ping pong paddles before keeping a nice 30 pound fish. Shift 2, I let the two guests go out unassisted for the high slack. Nothing...bummer.

Day 2. The two guests hit the morning low slack, One limits on two 10 to 15 pounders. The other doesn't get hit. I go out with the one guest in the afternoon and he shakes off a ping pong paddle. The only hit of the afternoon.

So the fishing is spotty but still producing. I ran into a fellow kayaker I know from Northwestkayakanglers.com and he did great by anchoring. Set up an anchor and buoy system so he could quick release and not have to deal with any of the scope in the line. I may have to try that during the hour before and after slack tide.

Maybe more interesting than the report were the fish we caught. One of my guests 10 pounder caught on day 2 had only one eye. No signs of any scar or healing where the other eye should be. It sort of looks like there is a wound in the photos but there isn't. I wonder what happened? Otherwise it looked perfectly healthy.

The other "hmm..." moment came as we noticed small 4 to 6 inch dollies swarming around the halibut carcasses. Caught a few of those, but a few feet deeper, there were numerous 10 to 12 inch dollies. I am sure there are larger ones close by. May have to give it a go with a flyrod or ultralight. We were using small spinners and tiny spoons.

We saw quite a few salmon jumping. Couldn't tell what they were, We also saw LOTS of fish that looked to be small dollies or salmon about 6 to 8 inches long hopping around over 35 to 50 ft of water.

So here's the video of my guests 30 pounder. Little longer than normal and sorry in advance for the dirty lens.



ANGLER:  This Butt's For You
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth - South Beach
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Three of us dipnetted on the south side Friday for a couple of hours (9PM-11PM) - 0. Two of us dipnetted Saturday (7/26) from about 9AM-11PM, and 1 dipnetted sporadically between that time. We got 20 during the full (and exhausting day).

Sunday, two of us dipnetted from about 9AM-noon, and got 29. We tied empty plastic bottles to tops of nets (one was a heavy 5 foot hoop and the other was a small rectangular net you see at B&J), waded to our chest, and did the walk. We would start about the area by the port a potties and go downstream. Current was too strong for people standing. We hit the fish almost every walk. Had about 5 people join us and they did great, too.

Cousin landed a double, another person landed a triple. People standing didn't do well at all during the couple hours the fish were running (probably around 9:30-11:30 but I don't exact timing).

Saw a woman tied a bag (that holds multiple snack bags of chips) and use it as a float. It was fun to watch because it worked, too. Others had milk jugs. Anyway, add enough bottles to make it just bounce along the bottom or even move along the top of the water quickly and find some current closer to the low tide and that just may help your chances.

ANGLER:  VK40
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Near Pony Cove
SPECIES:  Silvers, King, Halibut

REPORT: Our group got 13 silvers, 1 halibut, and 1 king. Fish were deep. Water was bumpy until we were about to leave. Lotta radio chatter about slow bite. Great day out with the family!

ANGLER:  Armydriver
TRIP DATE:  7/28
REGION:  Upper Susitna & Copper R
WATER:  Klutina River
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Hit the river by the bridge for a total of 6 hard fishing hours, 2 fishermen 3 fish. It has slowed to a trickle at this hot spot. I will say they are still pretty bright just one was coloring up.

ANGLER:  Rose
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Ship Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: I caught this one as the tide was going out and before the flippers showed up in my area. It doesn't look like flipping is successful with the amount of flippers vs. the number of catch. This is my first Silver this year. I've also caught 2 pinks, released 1 pink and lost 1 Silver at this fishery. This is my 3rd year fishing there and there is so much to learn. Thanks to the many friends I have made, I've learned so much. Thanks guys!

ANGLER:  Nevel182
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Jim Creek, Eklutna Tailrace
SPECIES:  Anything

REPORT: We headed on down to Jim in hopes of landing a fish or 2 since the Kenai is so hit or miss its not worth the waste of gas to drive down there. We hit the water around 1 pm and Flipped and fly fished for a bit but no hits, nothing, we ran vibrax and a bunch of other items also. Fished for Four hours NOTHING at all, we saw One hooked but it was not landed. I guess it is just not time for Jim yet. We stopped by the Tailrace on our way back to Anchorage area, The wife laid into a fire engine red King on second cast! it was released and then in the next 2 hours we saw One Red caught, so we called it and left.

ANGLER:  Klondike Kid n AKJake reporting
TRIP DATE:  7/28 MONDAY
REGION:  SOUTHCENTRAL
WATER:  Valley & KP
SPECIES:  Salmon

REPORT: MONDAY NOON NEWS:
All Active Salmon Run charts updated through SUNDAY counts.

-- Deshka and Little Su both had some average or better than expected coho counts at the weirs over the weekend. Deshka is still lagging behind the average run but the projection is up to 19,000 fish now. On the Little Su I suspect that the timing we are seeing THIS summer is more like a typical year. Remember the heat wave summer of last year warmed a lot of streams and that delayed upstream migrations on some runs.
-- Increasing numbers of coho in these two "canaries in the coal mine" runs could indicate similar bumps in coho counts arriving in the other popular fisheries around the Valley. The additional EO fishing time for the commfish Drift Fleet has often been restricted to fishing in the corridor along the Kenai Peninsula which would allow middle Inlet salmon to have safe passage to upper Cook Inlet streams.
-- JIM Creek sounds like better numbers of fish are arriving in the area with a majority still being Sockeye.
-- FISH CREEK DIPPING: WHAT? You guys let 1029 REDS up the creek yesterday? They must have pushed upstream after closing!! And even 49 coho made it to the counter. Just 3 days left counting today for the dippers. But at least the fish are fresh and bright this year for those getting caught.
-- RUSSIAN RIVER Late Run Sockeye continues to show completely unexpected weakness in a year when every other sockeye run in Southcentral was healthy to strong. Currently the run is projecting over 30% below the minimum escapement goal of 30,000 and I would not be surprised if some restrictions on harvest are imposed on this run as a means of getting escapement numbers higher.

OTF INDEXES: Yes The Fat Lady Is Singing. South Boat OTF numbers won't make it here in time before the Dipnet season closes on the KENAI. If some of those fish are destined for the Kasilof then those numbers would be something to watch IF there was any numbers to watch.
SOUTH Boat Index on SATURDAY was 36 and on SUNDAY was 34.
NORTH Boat Index on SATURDAY was 40 and on SUNDAY was 17 out from the Kasilof and Kenai Rivers.

I posted a LOT of Private Angler Fishing Reports covering lots of fisheries from folks over the weekend. Surprisingly there was an ABSENCE of any news from the Pony Cove / Resurrection Bay COHO anglers over the weekend. Chime in if you have news. Pinks and Coho must be pushing into the Bay at Sunny Cove and perhaps beyond by now.

KENAI SOCKEYE PROSPECTS FOR DIPPERS and SPORTIES:
Its getting pretty thin out there folks. For both groups. And except for those rare sweet spots on the river you will have to put in a lot of time on the fly rod to get a limit. Bings is always a "pinch point" where even small daily numbers will stack up at the rapids if you can manage crowded fishing at times. Last night running downriver from the Pillars the drop off anglers fishing the gravel runs and bars were having no luck flipping for sockeye as I went by and that did not change 5 hours later when I headed back up river. PINKS, YES! But they were rolling them out of their nets too.

DIPPERS: Getting sparse and sparser. Reds will be in smaller and smaller groups and hot fishing will not last long before another drop off. Its called the end of the run for all intensive purposes. Daily trickles of 10,000 over 24 hours is not going to provide dippers or sporties much opportunities even though a hundred thousand fish will likely enter the river before they pull the plug on the sonar. But the PINKS are going to be the bane of dippers and flippers. Great for kids though. Try fishing at Cunningham Park which is on Beaver Loop upstream of the Kenai Bridge during the incoming high tide. Vibrax, T Spoons and Pixies all work there and these are straight out of the ocean and dime bright in perfect condition for eating and smoking. I'm sure I'll have some end up in the freezer from my last dipnet outing this week. Jake loves the boiled bellies and fins as well. And I need to see how they turn out in my new smoker anyway.

SONAR COUNTS:
Kasilof River Sunday count was 4200. Midnight to 7am today was only 800.
Kenai River Sunday count was 22,000. Midnight to 7am today was 9100.

ANGLER:  brightandchrome
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Willow Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Fished Willow Creek this last weekend, water was pretty high so not a lot going on, besides pinks, but did manage to bring home two silvers, but fished all day Saturday for them. I have a question though; I was talking to a gentleman down there that said there was a guy that received a ticket for fishing with eggs, and the officer told him that bait is not allowed until August 6 at Willow. There is nothing in the regs about this, or at least what I can see. Has anyone heard anything different?

Page 25 General Regulations for all Unit 2 streams allows bait from July 14 - August 31 unless there is a noted exception for a stream listed separately. There is NO BAIT YEAR ROUND from the ADFG Marker a 1/2 mile upstream of the Willow mouth as well as everything upstream of the Parks highway is always no bait. So he may having been fishing in the closed area above the marker. ??

The August 6th date is when you can start using bait on the LIL SU from then thru September 30. (Page 35 for Lil Su) Sounds like someone has their wires crossed.]

ANGLER:  ilovefish
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Bing's Landing
SPECIES:  reds

REPORT: I fished the Bings Landing Sunday morning to 130 pm. Fishing was steady to good. I must have hooked at least 15 or more. Some people were doing much better than me. I noticed there were period of 30 min to 1 hour where fishing slows down to a halt and picks right back up. I tried the pseudo krill killer and they sure work. Thanks! Lot less foul hooks. They seem to work best when there is light out. Fished a little bit from 10 to midnight on Saturday. I had couple of hook ups around 10:30 and no hook up when it started to get dark. Oh the last one I landed, I was using unpainted dumbell eyes (golden color).

ANGLER:  Dipped Out
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Is this year a total bust for beach dipping at the mouth? The return numbers seem to have stayed low - there has been no "wall of fish" like in previous years, despite the limited set nets. I've been 3 times dipnetting (four tides) and only managed 3-4 each time. Most people around me dipping were in worse shape with one, two or nothing.

So end of season is this week and now I'm reading people are getting pinks in their nets. Is it worth it to even try one last suicide run?

[AOJ: As you have read, pinks are arriving in the Kenai now somewhat ahead of schedule for numbers of this size. This might have been one big initial school before the pink run stretches out as it is suppose to be. But sockeye numbers arriving in the river mouth are getting fewer every day. So I couldn't say if the drive and expense would be worth the chance. You could hit a decent day if you spent enough time but just a single tide of fishing this year has not produced well for folks. Most have had to put in long days to finally hit some fish. I have one more trip to make with relatively coming down from Anchorage. They will be satisfied with some ocean bright pinks if the reds are few and far between so it will be a success anyway. But I don't put much hope in the chances. The OTF Index for the North Boat fishing offshore of the Kasilof/Kenai rivers was only 17 on SUNDAY. PRETTY DEAD OUT THERE it seems.]

ANGLER:  kingriver
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Hello, just wanted to tell the folks that the pinks are in. We dipped from 3 pm till 8 pm that was through high tide and only got 6 reds, but lots of pinks. Aren't they just a tad early and aoj wheres the big push of reds we usually see every year? Was fun fishing anyway....

[AOJ: No big push of reds this year. Just dribbling in. Run will continue as a trickle into mid August.]

ANGLER:  TEM Fisher
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Dipnet by boat
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: My husband and I went dipnetting on Sunday, the 27th in the morning, departing a little north from Pillars around 8:30am. We fished the main boating dipnet area, with two nets in the river, getting at least one fish a pass, except once. Most times we were getting two-three fish a pass. The fishing picked up closer to low tide and we left by noon, since we had our limit.

We decided to keep a few pinks for canning and smoking. Majority of our fish were sockeye and didn't net many pinks.

My father and brother went out on Saturday, same area, they had turned back over 20 pinks into the river and ended up getting enough sockeye, however they fished from 7am till 5pm. The pinks are definitely coming in force. If you are persistent, there are still sockeye in the river.

There are a least two boats stuck each day on the mudflats as the river was going out, boaters just weren't watching the depth or unaware of how fast the tide was going out.

ANGLER:  Rkymtnhigh
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth - North Beach
SPECIES:  Reds and a bunch of pinks

REPORT: Hit the north beach around 5pm. Started off right below the parking lot. Lots of pinks moving through. Also lots of people hooting and hollering and keeping lots of pinks for their coolers! Being this was our last run down, we decided to keep a few nice ones ourselves. After a couple hours of net and release, we moved down to a spot just above the conga line. Folks were pulling reds, and it was actually pretty hot for a while. We left at 10pm with 21 reds and 4 pinks. Pretty happy that I'm gonna get to try some canning this year!

[AOJ: There were a number of hefty chromer pinks I got yesterday in the boat that I had to look 3 times to make sure it was a pink before rolling it out of the net. They were very "convincing" if you didn't inspect for light spots in the tail and the smaller scales. But they just don't hit the net like a Kenai Red. That is the first giveaway. I'm sure there were a lot of pinks in the boats too that were unaware of what they kept until they did the cleaning.]

ANGLER:  Klondike Kid n AKJake reporting
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River dipnetting - Boat
SPECIES:  Pinks and a red here and there

REPORT: Well I'm hoping AKJake and I got to the party late and those boats who were out on the river this morning and into the afternoon found some reds in their dipnets. We ran down from the Pillars since the City doesn't allow a single person to launch at the dock. No TIE UPS at the floats so someone needs to run the boat while the other gets the boat trailer. Jake doesn't know how to drive my truck or the boat. Thus the 12 mile run to the fishery.

We arrived about an hour and a half ahead of the 6pm high tide. Boats along the Duck Flats straightaway were hitting some fish when we arrived but noticed a number of them were rolled back into the river indicating pinks. A guy at the Pillars pulling out warned me ahead of time there was a school of pinks moving into the river and "boiling" in a few locations they passed on the way up river. He said they did "OK" on their dipping efforts. Well that wasn't the luck I had. Rolled about a dozen pinks, NICE looking fish that I was tempted....but...there are a few MILLION headed for the Kenai River in the next 3 or 4 weeks so no sense in punching one on a dipnet permit. Long after the tide had turned and was running hard I finally put ONE SOCKEYE in the box. And that was it for me. Fished until almost 9:30pm before calling it quits.

The GREAT part about this trip = Didn't have to clean the boat and fish processing took all of ten minutes from the box to the Freezer. See there is always a bright side to a SKUNK.

ANGLER:  Akfishboy
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Fish Creek Personal Use Dipnet Fishery
SPECIES:  Reds, Pinks, Silvers

REPORT: Got to Fish Creek around 9-9:30 pm saw lots of fish on stringers. This is my 3rd time this year going to Fish Creek and I finally got to take home some fish! Managed 1 red and 1 pink. My older sister said she was gonna be down there, I found her when we left she has 7 reds, 1 nice coho, and 3 pinks. Not a bad day on the creek, lots of people. The weather was perfect, clouds but not raining.. Gonna try my luck again I'm the morning tide.:) good luck to all. FISH ON!

ANGLER:  Sockeye Charlie
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Six Mile Creek / Resurrection
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Went back to Six Mile for another go, and got the first silver of the season. Great fishable eddy at mile 3.9 of Hope Road, follow the trail at the upstream side of the pullout to the river and turn right to the big eddy. Took this one on roe.

ANGLER:  dirty north
TRIP DATE:  7/27
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  JIM Creek
SPECIES:  Reds and Silvers

REPORT: Well hit Jim Creek with the wife and a couple of buddies and fishing was great fished the lagoon and fish were rolling 360 degrees and it was on. Hooked a lot. Everyone was catching. I ended up bringing home a nice chrome red and a chrome silver caught on the 8wt with a chartreuse fly. It didn't seem to matter what color the fly was I tried a krill killer and lost it on a snag third drift booooooo. People throwing hardware were not catching anything that I could see. Well tight lines yall and keep it legal... mainly reds in there yet not many silvers. Did see a few but they were pretty scarce. Can't wait until they decide to charge up knik and plug it up.

ANGLER:  asdfg
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kasilof River - Dipping
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Went dipnetting at Kasilof for 3 days. Caught my first one in about 8 minutes of being in the water directly after low tide began rising to high tide. For the first hour or so after that, I saw hits probably every 5 minutes between the dipnetters. In total of 3 days inbetween 3 people, my group caught only 20 fish. We saw dippers on boats passing by, and they were catching nothing but water. A friend that I saw also told me that the boats weren't seeing anything on their sounders, so there's that. Hopefully there will be more fish than people and assholes will stop speeding by on their boats.

[AOJ: A couple of friends went dipping the Kasilof on Friday during the rain. They spent 5 hours on the south beach during the incoming. With all the special harvest area commfish nets corking off the river during that time. They still got 10 each but were the medium to small size late season Kasilof reds. That's 2 per hour each. Tough dipping with the nets at the mouth. But the escapement count is at 387,000 now with 390,000 being the upper goal. So based on the management plan for Kasilof sockeye the 24 hours a day of Special Harvest Area net fishing is justified. The run is still going to bust through the 400,000 mark and probably closer to 450K by end of the run. I may go down there and give it a try if for nothing better than to get the six wheeler on the beach and let AKJake have a run in the sand.]

ANGLER:  Keeptrying
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Funny River area
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Fishing wasn't hot but fairly steady today.. Limit and 30+ hookups in 4 hours .. Keep trying, you'll hit 'em eventually. Was fishing my 8 wt and finally for the first time managed to land reds with it!!! What a hoot!!!! Love it!!! Lots of folks came by and left cuz they weren't catching.

[AOJ: With the dismal 30K count days for the entire season it has been a very challenging summer for the sport fishers along the bank. At those daily levels there is never a full day of non stop fish pulsing and pushing up the river. You get spurts and shots and pods moving up. Flurries of action for everyone along the bank for maybe a half hour to a few hours and then a lot of work waiting. Been like that all summer and harvest levels are definitely down from what most have expected. But putting the time in will eventually give you the action. Its not 30 minute limits for most unless you are in one of the rare sweet spots on the river that have perfect fishing conditions where if the fish are there you can't miss. Glad you found "nirvana" with that fly rod. Took me almost 40 years to convert. I'll never go back!!]

ANGLER:  Gene
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Resurrection Creek - HOPE
SPECIES:  Pinks

REPORT: The pinks are in at Hope. If you know how to flip, a limit of three takes only a few minutes. I fished both banks by the bridge and never lacked hookups and good mouth hits.

For newer folks, Hope IS the place to get kids on fish, but it's not a cast and reel place. There were huge crowds down by the mouth and campground, but the bridge is easy to get to and FULL of fish. My daughter and a whole family of newbies limited out in less than 2 hours.

Please cut up your carcasses and throw them into the main stream though. Get out and get the kids hooked. My daughter is begging to go again tomorrow.

ANGLER:  907fishslayer
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Resurrection Bay
SPECIES:  silvers pinks chums kings reds

REPORT: Over at millers landing took me about 2 casts before I hooked one just amazing fishing every other cast just fun.

ANGLER:  Sleddriver
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Eklutna Tailrace
SPECIES:  Coho

REPORT: Got to the water around 5:30am and off at 8:30am due to domestic pressures. Throwing hardware, hooked up a bright Coho at 6:45 on a chartreuse spinner, the second fish caught during that time. Hookups averaged about 1 every hour or so. Of the dozen fishermen there, only one limited out (not me), while I was there. Weekend pressure began building about 8am, but fishing was still pretty slow. Saw some darker fish rolling, and the dollies were pestering the bait users. Hope to do better after the weekend crowd dissipates.

ANGLER:  KJ
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Fish Creek Personal Use Dipnet Fishery
SPECIES:  Salmon except Kings

REPORT:

(Fish Creek left, Knik Lake right) Checked it out this morning at 6am - lots of small boats launching to get to the mouth of the creek. One guy said that they got 50 yesterday at the mouth in a skiff. I then said, "and you still need more"? Lots of dipnetters in water and I noticed a few in the nets, so dipnetters are taking some out, but boaters must be doing better. It is a mess down there - lots of mud.


[AOJ: Yes there are a lot of fish, relatively speaking, being caught. The day before the season opener the sockeye count that day was just under 3000. The sockeye count for FRIDAY the opener ended up just a shade under 1000. The pink count was also impacted similarly with 700 the day before and 350 making through the counter on Friday. That whittled the run projection down to 65K at this point. Still about 15,000 surplus but remember the season has its last dipping day on July 31st. So there probably won't be that many fish arriving in these next five days. Get every one you can. Thanks for the pics.]


ANGLER:  Pete5150
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Knik/Jim Creek
SPECIES:  Sockeye/Coho

REPORT: With all the Rain last night I figured the river to be high again, Wrong, the water had dropped and actually set up a fair clear water/gray water line, so the fish were not as spread out and was done in 30 min. with a limit of fair reds...when I went up to gather trash below the 2nd mouth where the largest group of people fish, it was slow, or appeared to be, most were fishing spinners and other forms that were consistent with targeting Coho's..I did see a silver on stringers here and there, the mouth was holding fish, and the old lagoon that washed out a few years back had fish on while I did my task. I have watched hundreds of fish come up the last 5 days and have picked a Coho up here and there, but its still a Sockeye fishery for now. For best results, try not fishing way out in the gray water, along with testing your waders for leaking, it will bring only a neg. result. Walking softly and carrying a long fly rod, this will suit you well for another week or so and then, Silvers will Blast up the Knik River, and I wish you all great fishing...and a special thanks to the staff at AOJ.. tirelessly you keep us up on ALL the New info, where and when, how and why or why not, EOs, or ECs, and I for one, am bad at keeping up on that stuff, Thank you again...pete5150

[AOJ: You bring up a valid point made every season by "seasoned" Valley anglers about the biggest mistakes made by newbies and less experienced anglers when they wade TOO FAR OUT which actually pushes the fish even further out. This happens at Jim as well as in the lower sections of some of the Parks streams. And in the Sanctuary of the Russian River. Folks would all catch more fish in the sanctuary if they stood in ankle deep water and cast to fish just 15 feet out where they are comfortable to run. Oh well some people get it.]

ANGLER:  ChiliPepper
TRIP DATE:  7/26
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Cottonwood Creek
SPECIES:  Reds and Silvers

REPORT: Fished Cottonwood this morning ... lots of reds. Was a good day for fishing the creek as it opens at 6 and high tide was not until 11 am or so. Once the tide changed the silty water was pushed down and you could see the reds stacked in the creek. Caught mine on eggs, but saw fish caught on Vibrax, eggs and flies.

Tight Lines!

ANGLER:  Lucky
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Upper Kenai
SPECIES:  Reds - LOST GEAR

REPORT: Floated the Kenai from Cooper the Jims with low expectations. What an adventure it turned out to be! While adjusting the sinkers on my sons fly line I looked up to see a sweeper not there a couple days ago on our last float. I paddled hard and knew we were going to make contact but appeared the cataraft would hit it at the right angle and we would brush by it. The frame caught and the upstream side current swallowed the 18 inch tubes. We were stuck and we couldn't budge it. We made best of what we could for about 20 minutes (tightening our life jackets, removing hip boots in case we had to swim etc) A boat came by and we transferred my 11 year old shaken but brave son to their boat, followed by us. Moments later the raft flipped under the tree, resurfacing like a bobber but upside down. We were able with the help of others to flip it and finish our journey to Jims. We lost some of the unsecured gear like rods and lures but we made it home safe. Not one sockeye on the boat, but lessons and memories for life.

Thank you to Jesse from Alaska Rivers Co in Cooper for your help. To the other rafters that lended a hand, thank you!

If comes across any of this gear, call Erik 907-357-2049 and you will be rewarded for its return:

10’ Blue Carlisle Oar with black blade
Kenai King Lamiglass pole with AbuGarcia Record Baitcaster
9' 8 wt St. Croix Reign fly rod, 4 piece, with Lamson Konic 4 with olive line
Size 10 Caddis hip boots
Plastic case with assortment of flies/lures



ANGLER:  No Banana
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Upper Kenai - Below Jim's Landing in the Canyon
SPECIES:  Smoker reds + FOUND SPINNING ROD

REPORT: Worked from Jim's to the Kenai Canyon trail to find some reds for the smoker. Fish are moving by in small groups but steady and sight fishing is possible with decent water clarity and low water levels. Finally found a good drift and line the salmon were working and got my limit. Also picked up some 40 feet of floating fly line going by and pulled in a red it was snagged to...successfully released.

--Found a nice fancy name brand spinning rod (rod only) on my hike out. Shoot me an email to describe and claim (ifly410 AT hotmail.com).

ANGLER:  WFamilyFishing
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth - South Beach
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Hit the South Beach from 4-8pm for last dipping effort Friday night. 12 fish in four hours moving between the regular hot spots. Huge thanks to the guy next to me who loaned me a spare net when mine crumpled in the current after the tide shifted. Love the dipping experience. Everyone has always been helpful and friendly even when the "Combat Fishing" is in full effect. Ready for in river fishing with the kids!

ANGLER:  D. JOHNSON
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai Below Naptowne Rapids (Bings)
SPECIES:  Lost My Rod

REPORT: Lost:: Sage 10wt fly rod with Ross reel. This is a longtime favorite rod I lost to a "hot sockeye" while fishing below Naptowne Rapids in Sterling. Hoping some kind soul will call regarding the treasure they may have pulled out of the river. REWARD. Thank you much. 907-360-2631

ANGLER:  akassassain
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Willow Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Sitting with eggs for silvers. Caught one in two hours between 10pm and 12 pm. First silver of the year.

ANGLER:  Bobdabuildr
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  FISH Creek Dipping
SPECIES:  Pinks and Reds

REPORT: I wasn't in the best hole, so didn't do great. Only 2 reds for me. Friend caught 2 reds and 3 pinks. Across the creek (Pt Mac side) fishing was better. I was close to the fence and my side was muddy and away from the main channel at low tide. Fished open until about 10am when creek was too shallow.

On the Pt Mac side lots and lots of landings, mix of reds and pinks. Didn't hear of any silvers today.

Troopers were out this morning. If in a boat, make sure you're legal as they will make you take it out of the water and possibly ticket. Definitely saw them make people pull boats out and portage them back to the road, but not sure about citations.

ANGLER:  Wigi
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River
SPECIES:  Dollies and Trout (and sockeye)

REPORT: I wanted to comment on AKSalmonFisher's report. I was down there today, and I had been down there earlier in the week. The trout and dollies were incredibly plentiful today, much more so than last week/early this week. We were using yarn flies and we had to switch off of orange and pink to keep them away. I hooked quite a few, some small, some large, but there is no sense tossing large barbed hooks at fish that can't seem to resist what appears to be a piece of rib meat floating downstream. Notably missing were sculpins, and they were probably hiding from the trout and dollies.

Got my limit today, and got very wet. Apparently it isn't enough to put your rain gear in your vest, you actually have to wear it. Who knew?

ANGLER:  Fishinforfish
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth - South Beach
SPECIES:  Reds, pinks

REPORT: I fished the out going tide for 2 hours (6-8pm) and got 2 flounder, 6 reds, and 2 pinks. People were still catching some, but I stopped to clean and head home. It was a pretty nice pocket of fish moving through.

ANGLER:  Klondike Kid n AKJake reporting
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  FRIDAY NEWS SUMMARY
SPECIES:  Sorry for not getting this posted earlier

REPORT: NOON FRIDAY NEWS:

EO - Kenai king sport fishery closed to all king fishing Saturday 0001.
This action also closes Beach Site set net fishing in Kasilof and Kenai Districts until further notice. (More on what that wording "implies" a bit later.)
EO - Kasilof sport king fishing goes to Catch n Release on Saturday to prevent over harvest of that run.
EO - Marine king fishery North of Bluff Point closed through July 31st.

Commfish Beach Sites: The only allowed beach net fishing will be the Special Harvest Area at the mouth of the Kasilof targeting those sockeye.

The DRIFT Fleet: EO has been issued to fish the boats from 7am to 7pm for three days straight, Friday, Saturday, Sunday in the expanded corridor and Anchor Point zone.

SONAR COUNTS:
Kasilof River Thursday count was 9700. 7am Friday sonar count was 1200.
Kenai River Thursday count was 38,000. 7am Friday sonar count was 4200.
A report from anglers in Soldotna also reflect this dead zone passing through town on Friday morning. If you are a sportie, STERLING is where you should be fishing sockeye on the Kenai today. Thursday had some steady numbers passing through the lower river that should be in Sterling today.

OTF INDEXES:
SOUTH Boat on Thursday came in at 113.
NORTH Boat on Thursday came in at 120 on 7of 8 stations.
***NOTE: The OTF index is test fishing in the main "travel lanes" of Cook Inlet where many of the salmon choose to swim. So these Index numbers best reflect what the Drift Fleet may encounter in their fishing efforts. These indexes are less representative of what is traveling along the beaches and that is why Commfish uses beach observations to determine fish abundance near shore. With no beach nets fishing we have a big Question Mark as to what may be slipping along the shoreline and out of reach of the Drifters. That can present some unexpected hot fishing at the Kenai mouth even if offshore OTF numbers aren't so great. Every day from here to the end of July may bring surprises. Good or Bad. But if you are a dippers you just got to give it a shot when you have the chance. Friends boat dipping Thursday, 3 guys, 2 nets, 7 hours, 30 fish. Other boats had 15-20 on average.

FISHERiES DEVELOPING NEWS:
FISH CREEK Dipnetting: First report from the creek this morning was he caught all pinks. Silvers, pinks and reds are all in the mix for this run heading to Big Lake so the harvest can be a mixed bag for sure. Page 14-15 of the regs booklet discuss this fishery and requirements.

Little Su Coho Chart: There is only last year for establishing a trend line for the chart because of the new location of the weir for counting silvers. Remember that the heat wave of 2013 creating warm water in most streams probably had a significant effect on last year's coho run holding back until the waters cooled. So I expect this year's counts to show an earlier build up of the daily numbers more on a normal timing schedule.

DESHKA Coho run: I have added a Run Projection to the chart now. The run is only 5% complete but the trend is very stable and following the long term average run but on the low side. Counts are on the weak side of the 22,000 average coming in at 17,000 for the moment.

RUSSIAN River late sockeye run chart: Still a RED FLAG warning here. This run is not following the trend for every other sockeye run in Kodiak, Cook Inlet or Copper River. 12% of the run would be complete at this time. Minimum escapement goal is 30,000 and we are projecting 21,000 at this time. The one unusual variable is the Russian River is VERY LOW right now. Almost at a record low level. Possibly this may have some effect on fish passage up the river to the weir counter. But that would mean fish are stacking up at the confluence which they are not! I would speculate that if this run performance continues along this path that by the end of July it may be necessary to reduce the bag limit to one per day for the Russian. It has been needed in the past.

Well Folks, its the Weekend. And many of you will be heading down to the KP for your final dipnetting efforts. I wish you all the luck and hope we see some good numbers pushing into the river to fill your nets. I might have to brave the weekend crowd myself depending on when the kinfolk arrive. It ain't over til its over!

ANGLER:  Missing Net Handle Help
TRIP DATE:  For 7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai Ames Bridge
SPECIES: 

REPORT: RE Missing Handle:

The older gentleman who talked non-stop is Dennis. Not sure of the last name, but he's a retired Decon in the Catholic Diocese, if he picked up the handle, it was for safe keeping and should be easy enough to track down. I'll see if I can find him. I might know who the other gentleman was and will see if he knows anything about it. Dennis was always talking, but also wandering around keeping an eye on things and everyone and picking up trash. A pretty nice guy.

[AOJ: Always nice to see Alaskans working together and helping each other. Thanks for your efforts.]

ANGLER:  aksalmon77
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River
SPECIES:  Sockeye and accidentally hooked King

REPORT: Started fishing around 8am and had my and proxy limit of 6 by 11am. I lost several other fish including a hooked King I estimate around 50lbs. Fishing was steady but I would not call it hot by any means. I do have one statement that I'm sure will ruffle some feathers. I felt bad hooking that King due to low numbers of them in the Kenai River and I personally think they should totally be left alone. No fishing for them in the Kenai River and not even catch and release. Leave em totally alone. I know incidental catches by a few are unavoidable but I think that it would help preserve what is left of the King run. Catch and release fishing has been known to produce fatalities in those fish. Just my two cents.

[AOJ: I'm sure you are aware of the EO that was issued yesterday which closes Kenai king salmon to all fishing beginning Saturday to the end of the regulatory season. See above. I suspect that there will be an extension of NO BAIT to at least middle of August as an additional preventative measure to keep silver anglers from "accidentally" catching a king salmon. Perhaps even an extension to the end of August in the middle river above the bridge where a great majority of main stem spawners will be hanging out.]

ANGLER:  JSW
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River dipnetting - Boat
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: We launched from eagle rock this morning and were fishing by 7:00. We fished to 12:30. Pretty productive morning. 55 fish in that time period w/ 2 nets in the water. Had to to head back to Anchorage early, otherwise we would have got our family limit of 75 no problem.

ANGLER:  Flattail
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Firts time Dipnetter on the Kenai, after waiting over a year finally got to enjoy this method. Myself and two friends, JJ and Carly, joined some folks at the Bridge. I must say this is not any easy chore when the fish are not running in the big numbers, however, we spent 3 1/2 days there, ending up with 73 fish between us. Several others picked up on our timing and method and joined in on the success. I have to disagree that the dipnetters are getting all the fish, I watched as a lot of folks would come in and walk out empty handed. Once we found where the fish were, we worked our rumps off getting these numbers.

I would also like to mention that on the 15-16th, we watched some folks at the Soldotna Bridge fish (jerk) the same holes we had fished and they snagged a bunch, so the fish are there but our presentations were not working with a normal drift or color combo (less the snagging technique).

I meet some really great people there at The Bridge, Chris, Dennis, Allesia and family. A few good laughs, new memories and new friends! What a great trip. I truly hope to see everyone with tight lines and full nets.

Flattail

ANGLER:  Aksalmonfisher
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Bings Landing - Kenai River
SPECIES:  Sockeye, rainbows, dolly varden

REPORT: Fished from about 8am to 3 in a back eddy with my dad. Just the 2 of us in the spot fishing a riffle of a rock. Quite a few people out there but since we had it to ourselves fishing came easy. 2 casts in got a 3lb dolly and they seemed to be in thick! Couldn't keep em off the hook! Found the channel where the sockeye were swimming and swung a chatruese krill killer while my dad threw a purple and had great luck on both. I caught my limit around 12 after sifting through a bunch of Dolly's and a few beat up sockeye. The krill killers so effect my dad managed a completely blind sockeye bite one! Both his fish were blind in one way or another. We managed 5. He just couldn't get that last one! Fishing the krill killer is definitely effective! Had several hammer it mid drift completely caught me off guard! Was fishing light weights as well only 3 small split shots with just dumbbell eyes on the fly. Could feel every bump, bite, and take! Definitely am hooked on this fly! And thanks to your advice on the 30yds of mono! It definitely is easier than tying on leaders and the line drifts way better!

[AOJ: I'm sure a lightweight version of the fly pattern would work great on the Dolly Varden that are starting into the Anchor River, Deep Creek and Ninilchik River too. They have just come in from the saltwater where they have been feeding a lot on crustaceans like shrimp and krill as well as small fish like juvenile salmon. I'm looking forward to trying it this fall on steelhead on the Kasilof and maybe the Anchor.]

ANGLER:  Sockeye Slammer
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Lower Kenai
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Fishing still slow by historical standards. Fished 5 hours in a great hole on the lower Kenai, and landed 1 fish. Normally you would have at least 3/hr in years past. The commercial guys are hard at work!! Rainy, heavy at times. Good luck!!

[AOJ: I agree. Its been bad enough that I haven't taken the rod down to the riverbank since I tried the glowing Krill Killer. Still stuck at ONE sockeye on rod n reel this season so far. Hopefully some improvements are on the way with fish along the beaches having a shot at the river now.]

ANGLER:  Sierra Dragon
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  FISH Creek Dipping
SPECIES:  Reds, Pinks

REPORT: Dipped the opening at Fish Creek, We were set up by 5:30am and at 6 we started in with the nets. Typical of Fish Creek it was intense for about 45 min then it slowed to a more normal pace. We had 33 fish between 3 nets for the tide. About 1/2 reds and 1/2 pinks. More importantly the kids all had a riot.

[AOJ: Thursday's fish counts were 2900 reds, 705 pinks and 65 silvers. So a silver catch would be a bonus and pinks are going to be in every catch at these rates. And yes, kids really do have fun in the mud.]

ANGLER:  Lipripper2828
TRIP DATE:  7/24
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Willow and Little Willow
SPECIES:  Silvers & the rest of the gang

REPORT: After launching the boat at Deshka Landing I flipped a coin to decide between the Deshka or Willow creeks to take my father and brother (his-b-day) to look for some silvers. Tails was the winner so we went north to the Willow and Little Willow mouths. Each mouth had plenty of humptes and dogs and a few chromer silvers... We managed our limit of 6 silvers between 3 stops at different mouths. Seemed like you could pick up a couple at each clearwater confluence before they lost interest. Both drifting roe and a blue vibrax were the best producer. All in all was glad I took them upriver..... They caught between 20 and 30 fish of diferent species together, it was fun. My father even managed a chrome jack king... Which was released of course!

ANGLER:  new fisher woman
TRIP DATE:  7/11
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  The Lagoon in Seward
SPECIES:  Kings

REPORT: Went to the kids day at the lagoon, both kids caught a king. We were there for 4 hours in the rain. Lots of people left empty handed. Lots of bites for us, just a matter of it actually hooking and then landing them.

Stopped and fished for my husband and I on the way home, kids were bummed they couldn't catch anymore because they had their possession limit for kings. How do people store their fish so it doesn't count against their limit WITHOUT having to drive home? Thanks AOJ!

[AOJ: The fish have to be preserved so that they are edible 15 days from now. That typically means freezing solid. Or canning, smoking, pickling, or cooking them. Seward, Homer, Soldotna, Kenai all have a number of fish processors where folks staying/camping for several days can take their fish to be frozen while they are staying in the area. I believe even up at Cooper Landing there is a processor there for folks in the campgrounds at the Russian to get their fish frozen. Of course if you have an RV with a freezer in it you have a built in solution to allow you to fish the next day again.]

ANGLER:  akutdoc
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Dipping
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Started at 7:00 am and by 8:30 am we had 6 reds in the cooler. Others catching plenty around us too. Decent crowds, fishing was not hot, but steady. Fun father and son outing. Now we're off to Bing's.

[AOJ: A little variety is the spice of life. Sterling river fishing should be better than here in Soldotna Friday until some fish move up from the mouth. Was just down at the river and neither my neighbors or the guys across the river were doing any good at the moment although a few seagulls were diving for scraps from upstream.]

ANGLER:  wiskerchew
TRIP DATE:  7/25
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  FISH Creek Dipping
SPECIES:  Pinks

REPORT: Well was dipping at 6 am and had 15 fish in about 30 minutes. Just really wanted to get about 10 more reds and that's all I'd need. Unfortunately all that's coming in is pinks....:(

[AOJ: The catch will end up being a mixed bag as silvers, reds, and pinks are all going up to Big Lake. You must have hit a pocket of pinks.]

ANGLER:  Fish Crazy
TRIP DATE:  7/24
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Homer
SPECIES:  Multi Species trip

REPORT:

We had a group of three people go out on Driftwood Charters with Captain Shane on a multi-species long range trip. We ended up with limits of halibut, ling cod, rock fish, a yellow eye, a pink and a silver salmon. Captain Shane logged 135 miles on this trip.

[AOJ: Man it looks like you really had a glassy day out there. It doesn't get much flatter than that. Thanks for the pics. That's a really nice ling. I don't hear much from Shane during the summer since he is hooked up 7 days a week.]


ANGLER:  AK Dipper
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai/Ames Bridge
SPECIES:  Missing dipnet handle

REPORT: On Saturday, I left my 12' Mike's welding handle next to my car in the lot on the S side of the bridge while I was out dipping. I then moved my car to load up our gear; when I came back for the handle, it was gone. I had some tape on it to identify as mine. I'm disappointed that someone took it. At this point, I don't expect to get it back, but a warning to others, watch your gear!

On a more positive note, I got my 25 fish last weekend. Friday night's tide with a coworker on a boat = 10, Saturday am = 2, Sat pm = 1. Then headed to the Kasilof and dipped from the beach by myself. Sunday am = 7, pm = 1 + a king that was released. Monday morning got my last 10 during a steady stream of fish coming in. If you are adding up my fish, remember, some of these were shared another person.

I was disappointed that there's nowhere to park for free to access the beach in Kenai. $20 is pretty steep for one person to park (and more $$ to camp) if the fishing isn't red hot.

Thanks KK and everyone else for all the info, you kept me company all weekend, and I've learned a lot the last couple of years about reading the run numbers and timing my fishing.

AOJ: Here is something I just "heard through the grapevine."

"I just read a post on your page about a dip net handle going missing (trip date 7/19). I was at the south side of the bridge that day and I'm pretty sure I heard the older gentleman (60ish), that would not stop talking for 6-8 hours (most people ran across him), and another guy (40-50) talking about a "handle" or something that someone had left behind, in the parking lot. They were both at their vehicles, a truck with a cab over camper, sitting in the back. The older gentleman, who I was about to ask if the fishing had picked up, started saying something about if it was mine or if I knew who's it might be. The other guy seemed a little shady about it when I asked what they were talking about and kind of pushed me on my way. I didnt really think much about it at the time. I am not sure if this might help at all, probably not. But thought I would at least pass it on to you. Maybe it might be of some help."

I don't know if this will help but you never know who may be reading AOJ. Sometimes miracles happen. In the meantime, Mike's Welding does sell handles of all sizes separately as well as just the hoops, with and without webbing. Mike's Welding Dipnets.


ANGLER:  RVRCHK
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth
SPECIES:  Surprise salmon

REPORT: HUGE props to darkhousefisher for making that sweet little boy in his jammas day by slipping a salmon in his little net!!! Made me grin from ear to ear!! Good job!!!


ANGLER:  Sockeye Charlie
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Six Mile Creek / Resurrection
SPECIES:  Silvers (not), Chums (not), Pinks (!)

REPORT: Took the boys out for a day fishing Hope Highway. Was hoping the silvers, or at least a big chum or two, would be up into Sixmile by this time. Stopped at our favorite hole at mile 3.9 (trail at the upstream end of the pullout, follow the trail to the river, then right to the big eddy)and NOTHING. No pinks, no silvers, only wee little fingerlings tapping at the roe we were floating. Tried Vibrax and Pixies, too, to no avail.

Flies... nothing. Will try again in a week or two; that's been a really fun, productive spot. Headed to Hope and the Resurrection and found the pink mayhem; upstream of the bridge they were stacked up by the hundreds. Couldn't not catch fish. The challenge was not to foul snag them. Flies with purple and some flash seemed to elicit the best response, but just about everything worked, given a couple extra casts.

ANGLER:  ArcticWildMan
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai - Sterling area
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Decided to make a quick overnighter down to Sterling when a buddy called me saying he had bought a new boat and wanted to go fishing out of Bing's landing. Ran a few miles upriver to the bluff just below Dot's Fish Camp. Fished for about two hours and managed to get my limit after losing 6 others. There were fish in the river but they were hardly thick like we have been spoiled with in years past. Lots of folks fishing but not catching. I spoke to two different guides when we came back to the launch and they both said that the sonar escapement numbers weren't adding up to the number of fish they were seeing. They said it was a struggle to get their clients into fish.

On a side note. I have actually seen everything on the Kenai now...when we were headed upriver there was a guy in a red, white, and blue speedo standing on the river bank. We almost fell out of the boat we were all laughing so hard!!

ANGLER:  Bluelight
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Resurrection Creek - HOPE
SPECIES:  Pinks

REPORT: Lots of fish and lots of people from the mouth to the bridge. Every bit as packed as the Russian River confluence when the fishing gets hot. Left home in Soldotna to escape the crowd and just found another one. Having said that, lots of happy kids and everyone was pretty easy going. Beautiful afternoon, gorgeous scenery. We were swinging streamers on our 5 wts and caught plenty fish. I found it best to keep cycling through patterns as the fish shut down after awhile if you kept hammering them with the same thing. Released all our fish. On another note, Gwin's makes the best cheeseburger going. Stopped on the way home. Wow!

[AOJ: Its going to be a PINK year for the Kenai. A couple million will pack in the lower and middle Kenai. So its another opportunity to give kids a good workout reeling in lots of fish. Gwins was a frequent stop when heading home from our mining camp back in the early '70's. They had a great fried chicken and fries basket back then.]

ANGLER:  Hauger
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Driftwood Bay out of Seward + Russian River
SPECIES:  Silvers - Reds

REPORT: Went out of Seward yesterday with a couple of my dad's friends to get some silvers. Went out to Driftwood Bay and fishing was good for the most part. In about 5 hours of fishing we ended up with 18 silvers and a black bass. Seems like silvers are really big for this early in the year. Fishing should only get better! Fished the Russian a couple nights before trying to sight fish a couple reds. Spotted one and worked him in, shortly after I found another and lost him at the bank. Seems like I got really lucky as little to no fish were moving through.

ANGLER:  dirty north
TRIP DATE:  7/24
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Willow Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers and lots of pinks and chums

REPORT: Fished Willow last night from about 830 to midnight and all I caught was a sucker fish but........ my wife on the other hand caught a huge chum and four pinks. A lot of people were catching pinks didn't seem to matter where you were on the bank it was pretty decent. Proud dad moment ... my son decided to put on my wife's chest waders and come out there and fish next to me (by the way he hates fishing). We were about to call it a night when he hooked a nice pink that put up a fight for him. Man his ear to ear smile was priceless. Then after we released it he looks at me and said hey dad were gonna stay here for a couple more hours right .... lmao it made me feel great to see him having the time of his life. Well tight lines and sharp hooks ya'll and keep it legal.... quick ??? what are the dates and times for the Fish Creek dipnet fishery. Thank you for this site I wake up drink my coffeE and put in my report your the man KK.

[AOJ: Click on the Link in the announcement for all the details about the Fish Creek dipnet fishery.]

ANGLER:  Klondike Kid n AKJake reporting
TRIP DATE:  NOON 7/24
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula - Matsu Valley
WATER:  Peninsula and around up North
SPECIES:  Sockeye and Silvers

REPORT: NOON THURSDAY NEWS:

Commfish Beach Sites: The one 12 hour allowed fishing period ended at 10PM Wednesday night. The earliest the set nets can fish now is on Sunday when the calendar and clock reset to a new 12 hrs. of allowable fishing per week. So the beach nets are drying into the weekend and hopefully that will mean an increase in daily numbers hitting the river for the end of dipnet season and to give the sporties something to take home. The drift Fleet will continue to fish their Monday/Thursday schedule as well as EO additional openings.

To give you some perspective, the long term AVERAGE Kenai sockeye run to 7/22 would have counted 489,000 reds. We are at 579,000 through yesterday. So we are still 18% above the average year at this time. Still projecting about 1 million and change inriver at these rates.

The Wednesday Kenai king sonar count was released. Adding that to the run chart - the run continues to be projecting a solid 13,500 final count which is below the minimum sustainable escapement goal of 15K. On JULY 11th the Kenai king run projection dropped below 15,000 and for every day's count and recalculation since that date the run projection has never come close to reaching back up to the 15,000 mark to warrant leaving the sport fishery open to CnR mortality.

There are things "brewing" in the background but I'm not even going to discuss them here nor pass on how things will fall into place. (I'll make that announcement if and when its official.) I will say that I fully expect the NO BAIT Emergency Order on the KENAI to be extended at least to the middle of August in the lower and middle river to protect inriver king salmon from being "accidentally" targeted by silver salmon fishermen. That is going to make it tougher for the coho anglers so you better start digging deep in your tackle box for that lucky killer Kwikfish with all the teeth marks on it for the silver season. On the PLUS SIDE, the water conditions are excellent with good temps and visibility nearing 3 feet. So silvers will be able to find your artificial. And to protect the middle river king spawners I wouldn't be surprised if the No Bait restrictions were extended to the end of August for that section of the river just for another level of protection from accidental harassment of the spawning kings. There are a LOT of kings that arrive in the first half of August. With our water quality we can catch silvers on artificials. They do it in the Valley all the time.

SONAR COUNTS:
Kasilof River Wednesday count was 9200. 7am Thursday sonar count was 2200.
Kenai River Wednesday count was 37,000. 7am Thursday sonar count was 11,000.

OTF INDEXES:
SOUTH Boat on Wednesday came in at 52.
NORTH Boat on Wednesday came in at 48.

VALLEY NEWS:
--Deshka River coho counts have picked up a bit and starting to bump the average run trend line.
--Little SU Coho counts have dropped some but are far ahead of last year's run timing. REMEMBER, last summer was the hottest on record and rivers and streams in many areas experienced excessive water temperatures that prevented salmon from wanting to move upstream until a cool down.

--FISH CREEK Sockeye are still coming in above the daily average and still projecting a run of 73,000 reds at this point in the numbers. DIPNET SEASON opens on the creek at 6am Friday July 25th. Hours of fishing are 6am to 11pm daily through July 31st. The Dipnet permit is the same one used on the Kenai and Kasilof. Note that you can only harvest a TOTAL of what your permit allowance is. NOT your allowance for each fishery. Don't get caught over your number. I'm sure the fish cops will be monitoring the area. READ PAGE 14 and 15 for the details on the Personal Use fisheries.

PENINSULA NEWS:
Resurrection Creek at Hope is full of pinks. Great quiet place to teach kids to fish.

Russian River LATE Run Sockeye: Something is wrong here. RED FLAG. With the large numbers of Kenai Sockeye earlier this month there should have been an equivalent "boost" in the RR second run. No sockeye run in Southcentral, Copper or Kodiak has shown this particular below average start. We are falling significantly below the average run counts and its a consistent pattern and VERY UNTYPICAL of this run. If you plan to fish the upper Kenai you should keep an eye on the run chart. You might want to fish in the Kenai main stem for Kenai sockeye if the RR run is lacking opportunities.

Bird Creek salmon - sounds like there are some good numbers of all the species available.

SHIP Creek coho - folks are still getting limits for those who know where to fish and when to fish. And are versatile enough to try multiple spots.


ANGLER:  John Sockeye
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Lower Kenai
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: 3 of us fished yesterday at the "college hole" and pulled limits. The fish were all big fish 7 bucks and 2 hens.

Question: Is there a fish and game "poacher hotline" There are 2 local snaggers a father and son that are down there all the time ripping and snagging constantly. They come down in the morning and take limits out and come back again in the afternoon.

I love the site. Thank you so much for all the help and time saved.

[AOJ: PAGE 17 of the Regulations Booklet has a blue table listing the local Wildlife Troopers offices in ten different communities in Southcentral. Plus there is an 800 number you can call. The Soldotna Fish Cops are 262-4573.]

ANGLER:  Darkhousefisher
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula - Matsu Valley
WATER:  Kenai North Beach and Fish Creek
SPECIES:  Kenai Reds and Fish Creek Silvers

REPORT: Just pulled my last load of dipped Kenai reds out of the smoker. The entire family went with me this year. Mrs. Darkhousefisher stayed on the bank supervising the fish bonkers and tail clippers. We brought home 41. It would have been 42, but there was a little boy (maybe 3 years old) fishing in his striped pajama union suit with a small net. When he wasn't looking, I slipped a red in his net. His smiles made it worth giving up one fish. My oldest son caught about a 30 lbs King, safely released of course. Fishing was a little slower but at least there was pleasant company to help pass the time. Once again I had a great time and talked to some super nice people. The beaches were the cleanest I've seen. I for one think the city of Kenai is doing a great job managing access to the North Beach.

Also just a reminder: The Fish Creek Youth Only Fishery is only one week away. August 2nd and 3rd Fish Creek is open to kids 15 and under.



[AOJ: The silvers count in Fish Creek is improving each day along with the sockeye. Of course with the Fish Creek dipnet season opening things will be pretty trampled down by the Kids' Day. Hopefully there will be some fresh fish.]


~KLONDIKE KID'S 7/23 WEDNESDAY MORNING NEWS~

For all those who follow KK's predications, forecasts, and speculations, hey even PREMONITIONS, I hit this one OUT OF THE BALLPARK. Back in June before there was even a single salmon yet in Fish Creek I was giving that fishery better than a 50/50 chance of busting the escapement goals and opening dipnetting on that stream. As fish started arriving I continued to keep you informed of how well the chances were becoming for this event to be announced.

So HERE YOU GO! Enjoy your local dipnet CRAZY fishery. And please respect the PRIVATE PROPERTY in the area. READ the ADFG Announcement at this link that tells you WHEN and WHAT TIMES the fishery will be open. Good Luck.

~KK~ n AKJake


ANGLER:  Tap915
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Ship Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers


ANGLER:  troutn?
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: This is sort of old news, but maybe still of value for those trying to time the pods of fish on the river. A few of us fished near Soldotna the am of 7/21, starting at about 9:30. A couple of us were limited in less than a 1/2 hr, and probably could have been much sooner. Almost every cast bumped a fish if you were in their zone and could feel the difference between a rock and a fish. I've only felt that many on a couple of other occasions, so I'm not doubting the 65K run that day. I'd like to be following that school upriver, but work calls. Good luck!

[AOJ: Well as you know, timing is everything. You say you only fished a half hour. A passage rate at that moment of only 500/hr (a 12K day) would still present 250 sockeye to you in an hour (half on each side of river) and 125 in the 30 minutes you fished. So it doesn't have to be 30-40-100K day. You just need to be fishing the right spot and have enough fish during the time you are there. The rest of the day can be empty. There are TONS of bad places to fish reds on the river. And there are so few GOOD and GREAT spots to fish reds which provide the perfect of all water and terrain conditions for what you experienced. For those with boats, look for where the guides are taking their sockeye clients and you will find some sweet spots that produce even on 10K days.]

ANGLER:  Klink
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Sheep Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Spent a few hours in the evening fishing Sheep Creek with my nephew. Two other

people there. Pinks, Pinks, Pinks are everywhere.. Did I say there are a lot of pinks there. Hard to get to bite. Didn't see any chums or silvers. Caught some.....pinks. That's it.

ANGLER:  Buckeye Steve
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: After reading about the Kenai Krill Killer. I ran off to the Hardware Store to buy the needed supplies to fabricate some. After some campground fly tying I hit the river with the new arsenal. First cast WHAM. Fish on. Hooked a huge buck right in the front inside of the Upper jaw. Only problem it was a carcass. A huge carcass intact except for the missing sides. WOW. This fly is something. Even dead Sockeye strike it!

[AOJ: The second night I tried the glowing KKK that was all I caught that night. 4 carcasses. It sure gives you a rush for a half second when you set the hook into something solid and then it starts fighting like a bag of sand.]

ANGLER:  akassassain
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai - River Terrace
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Got my limit in an hour and a half from 2-3:30. Witnessed 4 people catch and keep foul hooked fish. Called the wildlife troopers and they got there within 10 minutes and she watched from across the river with binoculars before coming over to issue two tickets and take their fish. Rules are rules people. Follow them.

ANGLER:  Akbeez
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai - Slikok & Morgans
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Where are they?

Lower river seemed slow (Slikok area both sides) so went up to Morgans and my lady in new blue waders outfished both me and another fish veteran by her. We still only got 2 but she hooked 6 vs my 0. Died off at 8pm. We got 3 there yesterday, but quit before the later push came through via poster SuzieQ. Blue waders are definitely hot!!!!!

ANGLER:  Aksalmonfisher
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Eklutna Tailrace
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT:



Fished from 7am to 5:30 with a few hookups once I found the fish. Managed to hook the same 30lb king twice and a few sockeye. Fish were farther out than previously but are there if you work for 'em. Got a sockeye to hammer a 3 orange bead setup. Got him right in the top of his mouth. It was a great fight.. He started running down stream jumped and hit another guy right in the stomach.. Good thing cause it stunned him a bit and was able to land him lol! The fish are there you just have to put in your time.. Like most fisheries so far this year limits aren't coming easy! Be patient they are there!


ANGLER:  dirty north
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Willow Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Well I didn't personally go to Willow but my father in law did and he said he caught two silvers. One got off at the bank and the other he released (he doesn't catch to keep) So not much of a report but he was only there for about two hours. I'll be heading there soon and will have more of a report.

ANGLER:  #chumBum
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  JIM Creek
SPECIES:  Reds and Silvers

REPORT: Fished Jim Creek from 6 am to 10 am. The fishing at the beginning was decent as fish were moving up the Knik pretty steadily and I hooked into a Red and a nice silver but lost both of them. Decided to head up a ways at the shoulder of the Jim Creek Knik river mixing zone. I fly fished this spot and managed to land a good size Red over 10 pounds and left shortly after landing it. I hooked all the fish on an orange and white babine special and a small split shot and a 6 foot leader. All in all it was a beautiful morning and the fishing will only get better as more fish come through.

ANGLER:  LBC
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Bird Creek
SPECIES:  Pink, Silvers, Dogs

REPORT: Went down to Bird Creek around high tide, flossed up river at the private property sign until low tide. Amazing fun! Every other cast was a FISH ON! Brought in so many pinks, a couple of Giant Chums and believe it or not hooked into a King moving through! Didn't take any fish but it was amazing fishing and probably the best fun Ihad in a while. The king got away but it would have been nice to get a picture and release him! On the way out, people were pulling out silvers closer to the bridge. It was awesome to see!

On a side note- the owner of the private property came out yesterday and yelled at some people who were passed the sign on his property. So stay off his property people!

ANGLER:  Redhaid
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Resurrection Creek - HOPE
SPECIES:  Pinks!

REPORT: I took my daughter and her friend to Hope and just had a ball. Limited out on nice firm pinks! The girls had a blast!

I was in the middle of showing a family of 3 from California with 2 little kids ( who caught 3 immediately) how to catch them, when some jerk came stomping up to me, and started lecturing me on he noticed my snagging technique. He was very loud and obvious( and drunk?) He really ruined my day. For a little while. :)

The dad of the family who I was teaching was surprised this guy had the nerve.

It was kind of weird.

ANGLER:  AKROR
TRIP DATE:  7/22
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River - Sterling
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Fished from 6:30 to 9am below Bings. Had only 1 hookup. No fish. Everyone on both banks has given up. The escapement numbers have to be wrong. Com. fish and dip netters must be getting all the reds.

[AOJ: Well I have already had a couple comments from river guides who are saying the counts aren't reflected in their clients' success rates compared to years back. I'm starting to think the same way from the success rate of anglers across from AOJ HQ. 50 fishermen can't ALL be inept at catching or even snagging a fish.]

ANGLER:  agimarc
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Dip net aboard a boat out of Kenai City Dock. Time spanned high tide. 36 between the three of us from 1230 - 1500. Two of us worked. Little Guy in wheelchair supervised and enjoyed the boat ride. Great job by the guide who really helped with the Little Guy. Fileting and freezing today. There are fish out there. Dipping was steady with the occasional pod of fish which got real busy. Cheers -

ANGLER:  tgale
TRIP DATE:  7/23
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River
SPECIES:  Red salmon

REPORT: Not a fishing report so much as a comment regarding an earlier post by someone getting a ticket on the beach for failure to record. This is a quote from Robert Begich management biologist.

Begich: “One of the things that’s new for this year in regulation is language that clarifies when people need to log their catch after personal use fishing. It’s right on the permit, and basically, I’ll paraphrase it, it says you need to mark your harvest and record it on your card prior to leaving the area that’s open to dip netting, so once you leave the boundary of that fishery, you need to have your harvest recorded on that card.” (radio kenai website)

That is a far cry from what is being enforced! I read that and took it to mean that I was fine putting my fish in a cooler and closing the lid as long as I recorded before I left the dip netting area. I thought he made that statement to clear up the confusion! Now I go back and read the permit and it says "prior to concealing from plain view or transporting fish from the shoreline adjacent to waters open to fishing" Sounds like Mr Begich needs to read the regulations better. I for one think that it should be that they must be recorded prior to leaving the beach and allow people to record when they are all done and close the lid on their coolers until that time. Where on the card do they expect you to keep a running total? If that is the expectation, there should be a place to do that. I guess by the letter of the law and what is written on the card, you better record on your card before leaving even when you don't catch anything. How many people record as they go when boat dipping? Not many. My experience is that people dip as fast as they can then clip tails and count either while running back up the river or at the end while waiting for the ramp. If there was ever actually any kind of law enforcement on the river, hundreds of tickets could be handed out. Just my 2 cents..



[AOJ: I can't comment on your conversation with Robert. I know him well and I'm sure he is up on the regs.

I'll post this just because its my opportunity to set the record straight.

  • The Dipnet Card is a very abbreviated document. There is not enough room to be quoting entire passages of the law.
  • The full details of the regulations and requirements are found in the Southcentral Sportfish Booklet that I'm sure EVERYONE has and EVERYONE reads from Cover to Cover, or at least for any fishery they intend to participate in.
  • You are correct about the BOAT DIPPERS are 95% in violation of the law when they are putting their fish in coolers and garbage cans with closed lids. THAT is why I have a galvanized fish box with no top and a giant galvanized wash tub, again with no top. My fish are always in plain view to ELIMINATE the hassle of keeping a running total of what I toss in the boat. Almost no one else I dip around complies with that law but for a very few. Usually its the little boats that have open fish boxes and containers. And yes, the Wildlife Officers, at $130 a pop could make a lot of bucks every day if they chose to. Once the word gets out then you will see better compliance.
  • The process for changing the laws if you feel they are unfair or unjust in what they demand of a dip netter would be to submit a proposal through the Board of Fish process. The next meeting is in 2017 for our regs here in Cook Inlet.

  • Consider WHY this regulation was written this way. If a dipper is catching fish and they or a family member are cleaning and filleting salmon throughout the day and tossing them in a cooler you have no idea how many whole fish a cooler of fillets would represent. And its extremely difficult to correctly identify how many fish are there if you are a fish cop. So recording those on the permit as they become concealed is one way to identify what a dipper truly has in the cooler. Not everyone takes their fish home whole. And recording on the permit is sure a lot easier than being required to dump the cooler contents on the sand and count every pair of fillets. People WILL try to get away with as much as they can. There are over 60 busts for non-recording at my last check a few days ago. And many other violations like failure to clip, fishing before and after hours, retention of a Dolly Varden ($130), and retention of a king ($260) as well as quite a few fishing in waters closed to dipping by Boat and on the Beach if you are beyond the markers.

  • Its no biggie to comply. People aren't asked to jump through hoops. Its not worth ruining a good thing because of stubbornness, ignorance or deliberate "criminal intent." You people have a ONE OF A KIND OPPORTUNITY here to do what 99.9999999999999999999999999999% of the rest of the world CAN NOT DO! Embrace it.


Now, here is the clip straight from the Regs Booklet. I have put red arrows at the key elements folks need to know. Including recording IN INK, which is NOT STATED on the permit itself but it is in the regulations booklet. The Booklet ALWAYS takes final precedence.


ANGLER:  Klondike Kid n AKJake reporting
TRIP DATE:  11AM 7/22
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  KENAI RIVER DIPPING & SPORT
SPECIES:  SOCKEYE Status

REPORT: TUESDAY MORNING 11AM NEWS:

NO BEACH SITE SET NET FISHING ON TUESDAY! Except the Special harvest zone at Kasilof. Nets are drying from Ninilchik to Nikiski.

SONAR COUNTS:
Kasilof River on Monday was 17,000 even with the nets at the mouth of the river. Tuesday midnight to 7am count was 2100.
Kenai River on Monday was 64,000. TUESDAY midnight to 7am count was 16,000. Today was the first day I have seen JUMPERS in the frog water.

OTF INDEXES:
SOUTH Boat on Monday had a 76.
NORTH Boat on Monday had an 87.

NEWS: No significant numbers of fish are indicated along the entire stretch of beaches to warrant opening the set netters TODAY. That can change QUICKLY with some NASTY Marine Forecast coming up.

NOAA Marine weather is forecasting SW wind increasing to 20 knots in the afternoon. Diminishing to 10 knots after midnight. What this is going to do is push the offshore fish into the beaches. This may be the Trigger Point for dropping the nets as the weather is going to lay down after tonight for the next couple days. It also means that some portion of the Kenai run may overshoot the river and fill the North Kenai beaches too. SW winds blow FROM the SW so the direction is NorthEast into the beaches.

All active salmon run charts for Valley ('cept Lil Su coho) and the Peninsula are updated through MONDAY counts. Kenai River King salmon chart is updated through SUNDAY counts and the run still is projecting 1300 fish below minimum escapement goals not factoring in the 400+ sport caught harvest. What happened to the Management Plan protection? In 2012 the king run was 27% BIGGER to this date and the beach sites were shut down for the entire season.

BTW, Fish Creek is still projecting 83,000 from the counts in the stream through Monday. Still looking encouraging. :-)

The OTF Charts found on the Kenai River Sockeye run chart page are updated through Monday too.

9am Observations in my 2/3 Mile Zone. Good numbers of folks at Soldotna Park. No hook ups. The dozen across and down from me were fishing legal techniques and not hitting any either. HOWEVER, as mentioned this was the first day the fish have been jumping in the slack waters I monitor. So there were fish moving up the river this morning in better numbers than previously. And the 7am count was 16,000. Things should start to get steadier in fish movements as the big South Boat numbers are arriving at the river now.

Gotta run. Boat is ready. I'll catch up on fishing reports when I get back. Good Luck.

P.S. The GoPros are charging up. Maybe I'll get some footage today!

ANGLER:  Avsfan33
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Resurrection Creek - HOPE
SPECIES:  Pinks

REPORT: Took the beautiful drive from the valley to Hope today with my wife. Got to the river around 6 pm and there was plenty of room on the banks and people were hooking into fish all up and down the river. My wife and I must have caught about 25 in the three hours we fished. What a blast it was and these fresh pinks put up one hell of a fight! If you have kids that want to catch fish, this is a great place to teach them and get them hooked on fishing.

The only downer of the day here was that the shallows were littered with tons of carcasses and bits and pieces of fish from the cleaning table where people were just throwing them into the barely moving water. Very surprised to not see any bears on the creek with all that fish waste laying around. Chop and throw you carcasses into the swift moving water people! Thanks KK for all the work you put in for us anglers!

ANGLER:  Suzie Q
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River - Sterling
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Jill and I decided to fish Morgan's Landing this evening after reading Gray Squirrel's report and it paid off. We both caught our limit in 45 minutes. Lots of fish moving thru. We got on the water at 8:45pm if that helps anyone.

ANGLER:  Aksalmonfisher
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai
SPECIES:  Reds??

REPORT: Fished Sunday from seven to midnight an occasional hook up now and then to say the least! Monday all day only a couple to show for it. Third trip down here past week and half no good fishing. Tired of hearing, yesterday was better than today! I should have known better counts haven't past 50,000 in a single day yet. I think I'm going to call it a season on reds. I can blow less money close to home and actually get into some fish! But when I get the itch I end up back on the highway heading back for another go at it! Plus I keep hearing any day slug will hit. I think dam drift fleet hammered the hell out of the "big slug". Only time will tell.

[AOJ: Well if its any consolation, I haven't even been dipping yet and have only put one sockeye on the bank so far. I usually don't fish unless its a 50K day and as you noted, we haven't had those yet.]

ANGLER:  Aksalmonfisher
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Eklutna Tailrace
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Fished from 4am to around 12ish with a fish or so on about every hour to every half hour. All in all hooked maybe 10 fish.. The 1 I did manage to land I had hooked in the back just minutes before! Managed to get him again on a krill killer. Was surprised to get him back in the mouth this time! A few other people were catching but it was pretty slow yet.. Another couple days and it should be loaded with silvers!

ANGLER:  Norton
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth - South Beach
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Watch Out Folks, I was issued a ticket for failure to record fish on my permit while still on the beach. I had my fish, all 12 of them in a cooler, the trooper, Akelkok, said that because the fish were concealed from view I was in violation of not filling out permit, I was told to keep a running tally, hashmarks, on the card next to the date. I was issued the ticket at 2pm, even though I was not done dippnetting for the day.

[AOJ: That is unfortunate you encountered that surprise and pain. The regulations for the dipnet fishery have been the same for many years but the point you got your citation for is one many dippers overlook. Page 14 of the Regs Booklet. So if nothing else perhaps your report will make others aware of the "fine details" of the regulations. They have boldfaced and underlined all the requirements that dippers must comply with just to emphasize what we must do. Clipping tails immediately is one of them. And if you close the lid on your cooler and have not recorded those fish then that is a violation. This applies for BOATS too. If you have a garbage can or a cooler on your boat and you close the lid, you can be busted. Enforcement this year is at an all time high. They were even busting every boat that headed up river past the Warren Ames Bridge last week. Pulled them all over and almost every one got written up for NON RECORDING after leaving the fishery.

The rules to participate in the fishery are not too demanding yet I see the Wildlife Troopers Daily Police Blotter full of fishing and personal use dipnetting violations. There have been several tickets issued to dippers who got pulled over for vehicle stops and while the Troopers were checking them, they also checked their dipped fish and permit records if their gear showed they had been dipping. This has occurred in Sterling in several "speed traps" on the highway, in Anchorage and even in the Valley for a guy pulled over and cited for not recording. Troopers are authorized to issue F&G tickets too.

Failure to Record is $110. Dipping without a permit is $210. Retention of a Dolly Varden is $130. Retention of a King is $260. No permit on your possession is $210. And one that is nailing a fair number of beach dippers, fishing before the opening bell or after dipping has closed at 11pm. That one is $210 for that extra ten minutes.]

~KLONDIKE KID'S 7/21 MONDAY NOON NEWS~

MONDAY NOON LUNCH BREAK(ing) NEWS:

On the fishing front there are some very good indicators popping up. For those social media folks who don't know about the wealth of information over on the AOJ website, you are missing over half of the information to help you catch or harvest more fish. I am specifically referring to the DAILY SALMON RUN CHARTS. They are invaluable to see in real time exactly what the run has done to date, what the trend is, how well its doing compared to the long term average run and what to expect in future days. So you need to get up to speed on those. The home page has a QUICK CHART button with a drop down list for active runs being charted. I've got a few more to add to that list later today.

Let's start with FISH CREEK. My oh my as I predicted LONG before the first fish ever arrived in that creek, the run continues to meet my prophesy of coming in stronger than ADFG's pre-season forecast. The run is now 12% INRIVER. That is enough to post the theoretical run projection I calculate for many of the runs. Same equation ADFG will be using. As of the BIG count on Sunday, the run is currently projecting a 93,000 fish return. REALIZE that run projections are based on data up to THAT point. Every day's new count numbers will make the projection change some or a lot depending on how far out of the norm the count was. But as long as the daily counts continue to come in on the high side of the long term trend line, we are still on a path for exceeding the 50,000 run goal. If ADFG estimates the additional fish expected over the 50K mark is enough to open the dipnet fishery then they can announce that. Usually its only about a week long fishery. They won't open it for a few thousand overage. So keep your fingers crossed for a 20K bust over target and I think we are in. I was giving it over a 50/50 chance back in June.

LITTLE SU COHO: Coming in STRONG in comparison to the counts to date from last year. There should be some decent numbers throughout the stream now including the other salmon species too. I give this run a potential thumbs up for busting through the trend line with some nice numbers.

DESHKA RIVER COHO: A little bit of a slow start. We are in the 300 count range and should be in the 500 count range on this date. I'm a little surprised this is on the low side of the trend line based on the numbers of coho in Ship Creek and showing up Knik Arm. Oh BTW, Fish Creek coho took a nice jump in its daily silver count on Sunday too. So the Deshka is a big ?? for now. The upper Cook Inlet commfishers restricted to one net per beach site for the rest of July will help bolster salmon numbers in all streams in the Valley and Knik and TA as many won't be caught in those 3 fishing periods. R

USSIAN RIVER LATE RED RUN: Still early early for this run. The Kenai main stem sockeye run is mixed in with the 2nd Russian Run so the upper Kenai will have fish from both runs throughout the upper section once the fish start arriving in fishable numbers. There are some chromer scouts in the area but not really anything to fill the coolers with for now. Give the Upper Kenai at least another week, maybe longer. In the meantime, come on down to the lower Kenai from Sterling to the lower river for reds. Hit'em fresh out of the ocean.

KENAI SOCKEYE: We all know daily counts change, sometimes drastically from day to day. So I can guarantee you no matter how accurate I may be in my forecasts, predictions, and estimations, there are times when the TIMING of events may slide a day or two in either direction. And in magnitude too. A dozen variables. I do the best I can but don't blame me for any curve balls Mother Nature throws out there. The Big OTF numbers at Anchor Point will be arriving at the Kasilof and Kenai rivers ALL WEEK LONG. The general beach sites from Ninilchik to North Kenai have ONE 12 hr. period to fish this week. But the door is open for two 6 hr. tides in my estimation too. That could significantly increase the total harvest for those 12 hours. I don't think the beach site folks would complain about 2 short periods of fishing and the work it involves if it increases their harvest. But let's stick with the ONE SHOT and they are done. ALL remaining fish running the beaches will be on a free ride until the next commfish week resets the 12 hour clock on 0001 Sunday.

Realize that its NOT LIKELY they would announcement any beach site commfish period during a NIGHT tide. Too dangerous and tough to pick the nets and move gear in and out of the water in the dark. That's why I didn't expect a fishing period today. Tide timing during daylight hours was too close to morning news brief announcements. I'm thinking TUESDAY may be the day they Drop The Hammer on the beaches. OTFs in the North Boat test fishery are building over 100 now meaning there are fish scattered throughout the districts.

Sport fishing on the Kenai will only get better each day this week. With the occasional dead zones and maybe a noticeable drop in numbers from the one day of commfishing the beach nets.

Dipnetting will also benefit from the arrival of the big Anchor Point numbers. Harvest rates should be good for the boats but fish can move in schools or slugs so put your time in and you will hit the fish.

ALL ACTIVE SALMON RUNS CHARTS updated through SUNDAY counts. OTF charts both updated through Sunday index numbers. And there are always NEW fishing reports coming in and posted in the Private Anglers Report page you won't want to miss.

Got other fish to fry so I gotta run. Good Luck. ~KK~ n AKJake


ANGLER:  dirty north
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  JIM Creek
SPECIES:  Reds and silvers

REPORT: Fish were moving around and saw two silvers caught. Me myself caught nothing but it was a beautiful night and had a good time all in all........ I have a ???? about Matanuska River is there any fish in the big thing. I would imagine that there is but just don't know its a huge and fast river and would be interested on any info I can get about it. Thanx tight lines and keep it legal.

[AOJ: Refer to PAGE 33 and 34 of the Regs Booklet for Matanuska River. It falls under the General Provisions for Bag limits and species in the Seasons and Limits section. Although the river is dirty, there are many tributaries to this drainage which may contain runs of salmon and/or some good trout or char fisheries. Nothing draining into the Matanuska is specifically mentioned like regs for the dozens of other streams in the Valley. Probably because any fisheries in this drainage receive minimal pressure from anglers and don't require restrictions. Perhaps there are some sleeper fisheries one might discover on a one or two day road trip up the highway stopping and sampling what might be present.]

ANGLER:  Gray Squirrel
TRIP DATE:  7/21
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River - Sterling
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: After reading the good reports last night, I fished the Sterling area at 10:00AM and the fish were in pretty good. I fished for 2.5 hours and hooked quite a few and limited out. The fish were coming in waves but with good information, it makes fishing much more fun.

[AOJ: Well that good information is only as "good" as the fish are going to allow. They are always trying to throw us off balance to prevent their early demise! Fortunately when you have tens of thousands every day not all of them are on the same page. Yum.]

ANGLER:  Hockey_28
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Jim Creek (19th) Little Willow (20th)
SPECIES:  Anything with fins

REPORT: Well, it was tough weekend to be a Valley salmon fisherman. Saturday morning, the 19th, a friend and I headed out to Jim Creek. Arrived at 6:30am and fished until around 8:30. The water was as high as I have ever seen it. In approximately 2 hours we saw one fish caught, and 2 or 3 fish break the surface. I had one strike but no other action.

Sunday, the 20th, two friends and I floated the Little Willow. The water was high and murky from the two previous days of rain making for spotty fishing. Between the three of us we lost one silver and saw several rollers and that was it. Regardless of the water conditions, we saw a lot fewer fish than I expected. Normally at this time of year, there are large schools of pinks already holding throughout the creek along with a decent number of chums. We did have clear blue skies by late morning however, which made it an awesome day. I predict fishing throughout the valley to pick up this week as the waters go down.

[AOJ: The commercial Cook Inlet harvest Numbers thru July 18: Sockeye 1,662,223. Coho 27,033. Pinks 186,699. Chums 73,003. So there are some fish in the system moving up the Inlet.]

ANGLER:  Fishdoc
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Above Dot's on the Kenai
SPECIES:  Trout

REPORT: With an easy limit of reds out of the way I could spend plenty of time fly fishing for trout, which is really my passion anyway. Taking advantage of all the salmon carcasses in the river, flesh fly's and beads worked extremely well. I like to fish below cleaning stations and gravel bars where lot's of people are cleaning fish and throwing them in the river.

Fishdoc


ANGLER:  Cmotz82
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth - North Beach
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Dipped Saturday Morning high tide, north beach. 7 reds with my 1 net in about 3 hours. Dipped Sunday Noon High Tide, south beach. 14 reds with 1 net was out there about 3.5-4 hours.

It was really good dipping Sunday. I think everyone around me pulled a minimum of 10+ reds per net. Need to get the rest of the family to go down with me and we could've walked out with our full limit of 65 on that Sunday tide alone.

Just wanted to say, that everyone that dipped both days were super nice and it was great to have conversations with them the whole day. It made being wet and miserable a bit more bearable.

Enjoy the work that goes into AOJ and it's the best fishing site around. Thanks.

ANGLER:  salmon chaser
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Cook Inlet
SPECIES:  Salmon & Halibut

REPORT: I just returned from a one week trip to the Kenai.
It was a fun trip and we caught fish but I had a bad experience with the Charters that I thought should be passed on. I apologize for the length of this.

First I booked a Halibut trip with Chihuley back in March for a July trip. I gave them my name and phone number, number of people and date. They said fine my trip was booked. Well I called the week before the trip to confirm and they played dumb and said they had no such booking.

I knew it is a busy time time but I started making calls around Anchor Point and Homer looking for a charter for the one day we had. Finally ended up with Captin Norm on the Sea Otter out of Homer for a Halibut/ King combo. I thought that would be fine.

I have fished all my life and been on dozens of charters all over the world but fishing with Captain Norm was the worst experience I have ever had. First Norm bragged about how many fish they had caught the day before but then complained that his guests didn't know what they were doing and "they had lost" a lot of hook ups that should have been caught.

After we caught limits of chicken Halibut just above and below the cutoff size we went to trolling with downriggers for Kings. When ever the clip tripped if a fish was not on the line the customer had "lost the fish". We had either reeled too slow, too fast, jerked the line, set the hook to hard, set the hook to soft. Norm would bad mouth the unlucky person who had been holding the rod to all the other guests. I always thought fishing was supposed to be fun. It was not fun with Captain Norm.

Anyway at 2pm sharp Captain Norm had the lines pulled in and we were headed back to Homer with our limit of small Halibut and 3 kings. I was told the bar at the Elks lodge opens at 4pm and Norm hates to miss the opener. Some of the customers had to stand on the back deck since there was not enough room in the small cabin. When Norm junior came in to get chairs for these folks Captian Norm said "make them sit on the coolers". Norm junior is captain Norm's son and smartly ignored his father and brought out the chairs.

The final incident was when I requested to skin the fish we had caught. I know this is not the best thing to do if you are going to grill fish but when you are paying $10/lb to ship fish there is some sense to it. Captian Norm told me it was a bad idea "all the good oil is in the skin" "the fish will fall apart" "we dont skin fish". I said that is fine but would you please do the Halibut so I can save a few bucks on the shipping. At this point the nutless wonder Captain Norm got on the phone to the booking agent. I did not listen to the call but when he hung up he told me that he was not obligiated to skin the fish and was not going to do it. Fine I said, just fillet them.

So if you don't mind second hand cigerette smoke, you like to be ridiculed, you dont mind siting on a slimey bait cooler, and you are fine with a fish filleted the way Norm wants it done go ahead and book with Captain Norm on the Sea Otter.

In parting I would like to mention that I just typed Asshole into Wikepedia and Captain Norm's picture came up.

[AOJ: Hmm, yes there are times when some visiting folks get a raw deal. The thing with Chihuleys may well have been a failure of them to take your down payment reservation money. That reserves your seat. And is proof too that you have put money up front to secure your date. Most charters require a deposit. You didn't mention that so perhaps that is where things fell apart.

As far as the experience you had with the charter you ended up on I can't say since I wasn't there. As they say, always two sides to the story. But it sounds like things were not at an acceptable level for an Alaskan saltwater charter trip. You might check their website to see if they have Trip Advisor on it and use that as another approach.]


ANGLER:  Barry B Andrew B
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Lower Kenai River
SPECIES:  Kings

REPORT: Caught the last day of King fishing on the kenai Friday. Hooked up with 3 Kings and landed 2 keepers 32 and 18 lbs. Other one dropped off @ the boat. Also caught a nice red during our journey down the river. Its too bad they put a close to recreational anglers. That's such a small part of the harvest.

{AOJ: One of the lucky ones! From a technical and biological perspective the fishery should actually be closed down. The run projection is significantly below the minimum escapement goal by thousands and is THE WORST July King return on record in 29 years. It makes no sense. This was a 50,000 fish run at one time and the counts to the end of last week are in the 3000 range. And when the Beach Sites fished on JULY 17th they harvested 306 kings that day which if destined for the Kenai was nearly 10% of the entire run in the river to date. ?? Something really smells FISHY! ]

ANGLER:  Geesing
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mile 35
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Tried fishing all day off and on testing the water for the elusive and sometimes confusing prediction of the reds showing up at our place on the river!....only two in two days fishing on the 19th and the 20th!! We are patiently waiting on the fish to arrive. Hopefully the 21st will be that day!! BTW can you comment on on how fast the fish travel per day or per hour.....2 miles per hour seems really fast!!

[AOJ: I've been dipping when the river counts were dead up to that point. Then a major slug hits the river mouth by mid afternoon and they got counted at RiverMile 19 sonar by midnight. Anything coming in after say 4pm ends up on the next day's counts even though everyone was slamming them on the beaches and boats down in tidewater the day before.

On average a slug passing through Soldotna in the morning will be moving into the Sterling zone sometime the next day. 2mph may seem fast but when you can track a major school hitting the river under the above conditions there is little doubt these fish are moving. You have ONE CAST per fish going by if you are fishing a riffle run. When the Kenai hit 48 inches of visibility one summer I could see the schools swimming by me and would holler to my Dad and step mom "Get Ready here comes another batch."

I'm just about ready to go down and get my readings. And now that the fish are in I'll be packing the fly rod -- just in case things look interesting.]

~KLONDIKE KID'S 7/21 MONDAY MORNING NEWS~

9:30AM MONDAY MORNING

GOOD MORNING ALASKA~!

You will recognize BITS of this write up as similar or the same wording as my Sunday Morning post. That is because ADFG Commfish continues to be in a holding pattern. So READ ON! NOTE that this post won't stay PINNED long before it floats down the page. I have more breaking news in a following post.

1) NO Beach Site Set Net Fishing On MONDAY (so far and not likely today due to the next tide being in the DARK): Although there are large numbers of sockeye in the Kasilof and Kenai river offshore areas, the abundance and distribution for PACKING ALL BEACHES from Ninilchik to North Kenai to catch the maximum harvest in the 12 hours ADFG Commfish has for this week is NOT at that level yet.

This means all day MONDAY the beach-running salmon and those offshore schools which can dodge the drifters will have a free-run to the Kenai River mouth. There are MORE fish out there now. Just not enough to make blowing your 12 hours of commercial beach fishing shot at this time. THAT DAY IS COMING SOON. Beach Sites are continuously reporting what their concentrations of sockeye are along their own stretch of beach. Beaches ARE loading up. But so will both rivers as long as the nets are drying.

We have literally a full week of very high OTF Indexes at Anchor Point all moving NORTH to our rivers and some to the Valley fisheries too. That means with the pulse of sockeye into the Kenai River that began this weekend in spurts and shots and pockets of fish, it will evolve into a much steadier passage of fish into both rivers. SUNDAY was the first day the South Boat OTF dropped. But on the other side of the coin, it is now the NORTH Boat OTF Index that is "lighting up" with numbers to smile about. Heck maybe even cheer about if its been a tough season for you up to now. All will change. Its going through its metamorphosis as I speak.

2) The DRIFT Fleet is fishing their normal scheduled MONDAY from 7am to 7pm and the nets at the mouth of the Kasilof River in the Special Harvest Zone are also fishing trying to thin down those numbers but the are still letting a lot of fish into the river none-the-less. NO general Beach Site nets fishing on Monday.

3) OTF INDEXES: SOUTH Boat @ Anchor Point: SATURDAY index was 190 and SUNDAY index came in at 40. Indicator = A gap in fish concentrations may be apparent. But still much of the sockeye run remaining to enter Cook Inlet. NORTH Boat @ Kasilof/Kenai lines: SATURDAY the boat did not fish due to weather. SUNDAY OTF lit up to 120. With an 87 OTF on Friday we can "speculate" that the non-fished Saturday index was somewhere inbetween.

4) SONAR COUNTS:
KASILOF RIVER: SUNDAY sockeye count ended the night at 9800. The MONDAY morning 7AM sonar count was already at 4400.

KENAI RIVER: SUNDAY sockeye count ended up at 34,000. MONDAY morning 7AM sonar count was at 14,000 already. This may be a day in the 40,000 and higher category by midnight. I suspect we could break 50K today based on its time the run starts hitting those numbers, especially with the North Boat OTF over 100 now.

5) MARINE FORECAST: BEAUTIFUL WEATHER. NOAA saying Sunshine. Light winds, light seas, no rain. Bring your suntan lotion as you are going to get fried!

6) As a reminder, ADFG Commfish will be recalculating the expected total Kenai River sockeye run very soon. If this number stays on their initial projection things will stay the same. If the new number exceeds the upper range of return size, it goes to a new level in the Management Plan. ** I'm not seeing much chance of busting the 4.6 million return estimate but a lot is still undetermined with what lies further south beyond the test boat at this time.

7) SALMON RUN CHARTS: I'll get to them soon. You have the Kenai and Kasilof numbers above. With NORTHERN District beach sites commfishing restricted to one net for each of their remaining fishing periods in July (3 I think) this should equate to a bonus of fish getting up into the Valley, Knik and TA. Watch that FISH CREEK chart.

8) I fished a short while last night with my glowing Kenai Krill Killer. First time for that "model." I was pleased. Every time you try something brand new, as in a glowing fly, you are thinking "Boy it sure would be nice to catch a fish on the FIRST CAST." I damn near had that come true as you see in the photos for the 2nd and 3rd cast. I had that same experience happen when an old man gave me a Wooley Worm to try for Steelhead on the Klamath River when I was in college. Only THAT TIME it was a 5 pound steelie on the FIRST cast. I was beaming!! So was the old man when I told him his fly was "the ticket." He had tied up hundreds of these because his eyes were failing and he wanted a lifetime supply to hold him over. That was like YESTERDAY!

This week will be getting better and better numbers of fish into the Kenai River as well as good amounts slipping into the Kasilof. RUSSIAN RIVER and Upper Kenai have had a few bright chrome scouts in the area for a number of days and that should progress into the upper Kenai filling with its own sockeye as well as Russian Sockeye. Its not worth spending fishing time in the Upper Kenai yet if you want to fill the cooler.

With no beach site fishing today in the general districts and calm SUNNY weather, it can only continue to improve for the non-commercial user groups. Be Safe, Drive Safe, Wear your PFD in the dipper boats at all times. Good Luck! ~KK~ n AKJake


ANGLER:  COtroutSlayer
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River - Soldotna
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT:

9 pm in Soldotna just upstream of the bridge at River Terrace, huge pulse of fish coming through. Got my 2nd and 3rd in 15 minutes and other people were getting limits in 30 minutes. It's on!

Thanks again for all that you do. And extra thanks for your advice on the Kenai Krill Killers! These are the first flies I've tied and they're working great. Nice to try something for the first time and have nothing but success! All hooks in the mouth.
Cheers-

[AOJ: Dang, that fly looks like the one I put on tonight only mine was the glow model version with gold eyes and 3D prismatic eyeballs. See my Facebook page post of how that glowing Kenai Krill Killer performed in just a few casts. Had to come up here to the computer to post to FB and a bunch of fishing reports were waiting so I guess I'm done for the night since its 1:30am already. BIG DAY on MONDAY. Lots of fish for everyone!]


ANGLER:  Seabass_Seeker
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Homer Spit Lagoon
SPECIES:  Silvers and Kings

REPORT: Ms. Anchovy and I took my little cousins camping for the weekend. We arrived late on Friday night but the kids wanted to try fishing the lagoon. For whatever reason the bite was dead. I was one of two people who caught anything. Mine ended up being a dark king but because he had swallowed the eggs deep I figured we'd keep him for the smoker. I also lost a nice silver, darn barbless hooks.

On 7/20 I awoke at 4:30am to light rain. Seeing as the kids didn't want to wake up I braved the incoming tide alone. There were very few anglers due to the cold and wet conditions. Once the water began trickling in the bite snapped on. I had switched to herring and in all honesty it didn't seem to matter, the silvers were nuts. For a solid 15-20 minute window I got bit on every cast. I ended up with 4 big silvers and losing 1 fish. Most guys who had done this before had 2-3 fish apiece.

Realizing I had no more freezer space at home, I opted not to return on the outgoing tide later which also seemed to be just as productive. Instead we took the kids to Lands End and let them fish for pollock and flounder. Another great weekend, I'm just sad that my one year up here is up and that I'll be moving back to California shortly. It was a great last trip! I'll find a way to sneak back up here in the summers though so I'll be needing this site for years to come. Enjoy!

[AOJ: Alaska is only 4 1/2 hrs from CA. Save up your miles!!]


ANGLER:  fishak
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Lower Kenai
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Went out today at about 2, fished until 7 with one hit. At 7 it got pretty good and between the two of us got 6 in an hour. Hope the run hits soon!
~tight lines


ANGLER:  Steelheadkidak
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Fished Swiftwater from 8 to 1pm and hooked a dolly in the tail. Same story on both sides of the river. Maybe 1 hook-up per 250 people per 30 minutes. Maybe it's changed since then, I don't know. There's just so many things to be disappointed about this year. Abismal king runs, seemingly in the verge of extinction, gill netting IN the mouth of the Kasilof River, no clams, massive over abuse of personal use, rampant snaggers, leaving the beautiful Kenai river lined with beer cans, water bottles and fishing line, non stop openers for Commercial drifters, biologists basing management decisions on what will bring in the most cash v what's in the best interests of the fish. I was quietly fishing a rather boring stretch of river today, around a large sweeper so as not to be bothered and a few dudes came down and proceeded to step into the river 5 feet out and 5 feet down from me. Have at it folks, rape and pillage and maybe just burn it down on your way out. So sad.

[AOJ: Oh come on now. You'll get over it. Sunday night before sundown the river in Soldotna started heating up. And its only going to get better and better this week. Tower Rock Lodge said their novice sockeye fishing guests were limiting in 2 hours down at the Pillars where their lodge is located. Those are the fish pulsing the river mouth on and off all day. Give it another shot and that first limit on your stringer will cheer you right up. I've lived up here 44 winters now...temporarily. From the first year here I was determined to move to someplace else when I found somewhere better. :-)

P.S. See my Facebook page post of the 3 fish I got tonight in 40 minutes on a glowing variety of the Kenai Krill Killer.]

ANGLER:  CDolling24
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Finger Lake
SPECIES:  Char

REPORT: Went to Finger and caught one of the nicest chars I've ever seen come from that lake. Beautiful day with a beautiful fish. Took a pic and let him get bigger. Didn't pull a tape on it but the pic says it all! Thanks for the time put in this site AOJ.

[AOJ: Ah that's a dandy. Finger has some fine trout in it too. Scroll down a few reports to see Donavan's lunker rainbow from that lake on Saturday.]

ANGLER:  King_salmon
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Lower Kenai
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Fished lower Kenai starting about noon today, fishing was fair to begin and picked up becoming very good during the afternoon. It is the first day this season where we caught and released fish. Taught several inexperienced fishermen how we were catching fish after fish.

It was rewarding to see everyone around us catching fish...sorry Klondike Kid my green yarn works great and I hook 80% of the fish in the mouth. Centennial campground should be hot tomorrow.

[AOJ: Ah yes, while you are wasting precious fishing time fighting every 5th hookup that is a snagged fish, I get 95% of mine in the mouth (19 out of 20). :-) So its all about efficiency and conservation of energy. HA. Especially at my age.

See my Facebook page post of the 3 fish I caught on the Krill Killer (glow model) tonight in just a few minutes on the 2nd, 3rd, and 25th casts.

BTW, sockeye are traveling 2 miles per hour. Those fish you were hitting down low will be at Morgans to Sterling by breakfast time. But plenty of replacements coming in behind them.]

~KLONDIKE KID'S 7/20 SUNDAY MORNING NEWS~

10AM SUNDAY MORNING WAKE UP CALL: GOOD MORNING ALASKA!

1) NO Beach Site Set Net Fishing On SUNDAY: Although there are large numbers of sockeye in the Kasilof and Kenai river offshore areas, the abundance and distribution for PACKING ALL BEACHES from Ninilchik to North Kenai to catch the maximum harvest in the 12 hours ADFG Commfish has for this week is NOT at that level yet. This means all day Sunday the beach-running salmon and those offshore schools which can dodge the drifters will have a free-run to the Kenai River mouth. There ARE fish out there. Just not enough to make blowing your 12 hours of commercial beach fishing shot at this time.

Large numbers of sockeye ARE enroute to Kasilof and Kenai rivers. That is apparent from the continuous day after day strong OTF numbers from Anchor Point. And that trend CONTiNUES through Saturday's South Boat test fishing. I expect MAYBE a momentary lull in fish numbers into the Kenai as the 18 OTF void arrives. But weather and water conditions may have filled that "emptiness" with fish from the following day during the course of their migration where it may not be even noticeable. Once the slug hits the rivers its going to be non-stop fish moving into both rivers even when the Drifters are fishing. The 12 hours of beach net time this week through Saturday (remember there is also the 36 hr. mandatory closure window in our favor too on Friday) will not have any appreciable impact on what you will see moving into the rivers. Its going to be a GOOD WEEK of CATCH UP~!

2) DRIFT Fleet is fishing Sunday from 8am to 8pm and the nets at the mouth of the Kasilof River are fishing today in the KRSHA zone. NO general Beach Site nets fishing Sunday.

3) OTF INDEXES:
SOUTH Boat @ Anchor Point: Friday index was 215 and SATURDAY index came in at 190. Indicator = continued large concentrations of reds moving up the Inlet back to back.
NORTH Boat @ Kasilof/Kenai lines: Friday index was 87. Saturday the boat did not fish due to rough seas.

SONAR SOCKEYE COUNTS:
KASILOF RIVER: Saturday sockeye count ended the night at 10,400 fish EVEN with the nets fishing in the harvest zone at the mouth. Big schools hitting the river. Only 70K from busting the upper 390,000 escapement limit.
KENAI RIVER: Saturday sockeye count ended up at a dismal 17,000. I have no 7am fish count today. But the salmon hitting the Kenai mouth on last night's tide should be arriving sometime this morning in the Soldotna area. Perhaps around noon. Sorry, they turned off their cell phones so I have no direct link with them this morning.

At 7am Sunday morning anglers at Swiftwater could see the anglers on the south bank of the river at Airport Hole "Doing really well." That was from a trusted observer. So some fish at the front end are already in town. Probably the initial spurts of fish the beach dippers encountered yesterday early in the evening and then it got steady. The river will see the same events.

MARINE FORECAST:
Calls for LIGHT & VARIABLE winds through Thursday. I don't see any rain in the forecast either. That should make for comfortable dipnetting on the beaches with a set of moderate tides. Realize that when you have those nasty shore break wave days, its pushing fish towards the river. So I know you get beat up but it is in our favor. EXCEPT with rough shallow waters the fish are going to move to the center of the Channel and on those days the boat dippers usually are the biggest winners.

6) As a reminder, ADFG Commfish will be recalculating the expected total Kenai River sockeye run very soon. If this number stays on their initial projection things will stay the same. If the new number exceeds the upper range of return size, it goes to a new level in the Management Plan.

7) SALMON RUN CHARTS: I updated everything last night through Friday counts. I'll get the Saturday numbers on the charts later this morning. FISH Creek is still looking strong on the 5% inriver projection. But that is too early to put any money on it so it will be a little while longer before I post a projection for run size. Keep your fingers crossed. With the NORTHERN DISTRICT Set Netters now reduced to ONE net per beach site to bolster Susitna bound sockeye, FISH Creek is going to capitalize on THAT TOO! An unexpected extra bonus supporting my suspicions that the creek just might have a strong enough run to trigger a dipnet opener. I'd say if 25,000 fish show up this coming week we gotta good chance.

8) 10AM Sunday in my "2/3 Mile Zone" of the river. No Jumpers in the frog water. Still have not seen a single jumper this season. Modest numbers of anglers at Soldotna Creek Park. Still fishing spots open. Remainder of my stretch had only a handful of folks along the banks. And I didn't see any hookups while getting my river readings. BTW, visibility in the Kenai is 31 inches but the temp dropped to 50°F this morning. I've never seen the river temperature this consistent from day to day all summer long. Extremely unusual in the 15+ years I've been recording it.

There are NO seagulls flying and diving for upturned fish scraps in the river currents. An indication that no one is cleaning any fish upstream of AOJ HQ at 10am. You may laugh, but I can look out the window and by the number of seagulls circling and working my stretch of the river tell you accurately just how HOT or NOT the fishing is. Been on this riverbank for 34 sockeye runs now. And the birds don't lie.

With no beach site fishing today in the general districts and calm SUNNY weather, it can only continue to improve for the non-commercial user groups. Be Safe, Drive Safe, Wear your PFD in the dipper boats at all times. Good Luck!


ANGLER:  Tap915
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Ship Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers/Pinks

REPORT: All this week I've been going to Ship Creek and always going home with fish on the stringer. I took a friend that wanted to fish because she has never done it before. I showed her how to flip and a basic set up. I must say she was a quick learner but she did have trouble at times crossing lines and all. We hit the out going tide and got to the spot where I know the fish are in. Right off the bat I started hooking fish what a rush. My friend also had some hook ups but couldn't manage to set the hook when her line tightened up.

She got so excited when she would finally set the hook and feel the fight at the end of her line. Through out the day it would slow down and then an hour would pass and bam fish on! I gotta say my hand arm and bicep are still sore from fishing and catching fish all this week. We both had a good time for I think she finally saw the passion I have for fishing and how much fun it is. Patience is a venture when it comes to fishing. Just because your not catching doesn't mean there are no fish. It's all about technique and finding the right hole. Tight lines everyone:)


ANGLER:  DMC
TRIP DATE:  7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai Big Eddy
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Fished Big Eddy 5 AM fished till 11:00 AM Very slow. I saw six fish caught and I caught two. The push of fish it is still at the mouth. Perhaps the afternoon high tide will push fish up but I have to head back to Los Anchorage.

ANGLER:  Jake88
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Finger Lake
SPECIES:  Rainbow Trout

REPORT: With all the mayhem down on the Peninsula I thought it would be nice to hit the lake for a change. Took my son out for his annual father-son birthday trip. We had a very slow day. Trolled for hours and not so much as a hit. We talked about packing it up and he decided to pass through our "secret" spot one last time. Good call because he nailed this 25 inch monster not 30 seconds after casting his trolling lure behind the boat! What a way to end the day.

ANGLER:  Klondike Kid n AKJake reporting
TRIP DATE:  2AM SUNDAY 7/20
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth
SPECIES:  Sockeye Surge

REPORT:


Yes Toto, we are back in Kansas and the sun is shining and there is No Place Like Home.

Grab your dipnets, grab your rod and a handful of flies, the run has begun. There may be a slight "lag" in the fish pulse hitting the river because of the low OTF that followed the 240 school but if it even is noticeable it will only be a brief "lull" in the action. After that it will be nothing but bigger numbers each day during this coming week.

Saturday evening's high tide (11pm) brought spurts of fish late in the day and into the evening with stronger numbers hitting the river as the tide was going full. Dipping was good right up to the closing bell. These fish should be filling the void in Soldotna sometime Sunday morning. If they aren't there when you are fishing, just wait them out as they ARE on the way.

Daily sockeye numbers entering the Kenai River should grow every day during this next week as those big Anchor Point OTF numbers make it to the river.

BE SAFE. DRIVE SAFE. WEAR YOUR PFDs at all times.

~KK~ n AKJake


ANGLER:  CrazyAKmom
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai Beach - North Shore Dipnetting
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: We went down for the week hoping to avoid the weekend crowds. I don't think that worked, as actually last Sunday and this Friday were the least busy days on the beach and the middle of the week was just crazy busy. We dipnetted the North shore of the Kasilof Sun. night, Monday, and Tuesday. There were short bursts of action, but overall very slow. We were either in the wrong place or just chose the wrong times of day. It is funny, because I talked to a friend who was on the South shore at the same time and she had some hot streaks when we were totally dead. The other funny thing is that our hot bursts happened at totally different times in the tide cycle every day. So it's not like you can totally figure the fish out!

Dipnetted the North shore of the Kenai on Friday. Had a lot of action from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. (a couple of hours before high tide, if I remember right) and then it was dead until afternoon. We had another short burst of action for about a half hour right after low tide. We were hitting pinks as well as reds and I saw one guy get (and release)a king. We left about 6 p.m. cause the kids were tired and hungry, but it sounds like it may have picked up in the evening. We ended up with 8 reds and 3 pinks for the day. Kept the pinks to smoke because we are not near our limit. Not spectacular, but I really can't complain. We got some fish and the weather was gorgeous all week long!

A couple of observations: We usually dip the Kasilof because it is usually less busy than Kenai and less of a current for kids. But this year we thought that the Kasilof was crazier than the Kenai. We were literally pushed out a couple of times at the Kasilof but had plenty of room at the Kenai. I know a lot of people complain about the parking fee at the Kenai, but after seeing the parking fiasco this week at the Kasilof, I am not sure that a fee is such a bad idea. At least it keeps people from parking their 4-wheelers or trucks in places that block others or that take up several parking spots. I was initially cranky after paying the parking fee at the Kenai and then not finding a spot in even the overflow lot and having to park a mile away anyway. But then I thought about how they use that money to direct the drop-off and pick up traffic and service the toilets and I decided that I still got my money's worth of services out of the deal. They have raised the price, but they also changed the hours to a full 24-hr day - so I think it is a good trade off.

Thank you for all you do. We sure missed you this week when we were camping and did not have internet to check out your postings every day!

[AOJ: Indeed you did miss a lot of information. But the bottom line is you got more enjoyment out of your week than those of us that were sitting on the branches like vultures waiting for the time we will participate. It won't be long now. Sunday dawns a new opportunity I think.]

ANGLER:  The Dude
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Lower Kenai
SPECIES:  I guess Reds

REPORT: Fished Swiftwater from 0500 to around 10. Had one hook up and saw several caught early on but it died quickly. Just called a buddy about 30 min ago (5 pm) at Swiftwater and he had fished 2 hours and did not bump a fish.

Any day now...

[AOJ: Should be some fish in town sometime on Sunday morning!]

ANGLER:  Vi4Kings
TRIP DATE:  7/16
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Dipping Reds
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: A neighbor and I took our boats out to hit the incoming morning tide on the 16th which has been the peak day of the red run for the last two years. Dipping was slow as we hit 24 in my boat and 13 in the other for four hours of dipping. Launching was easy at Eagle Rock at 5:30 AM but taking out was a zoo as we came back in at noon and the place was packed to the hilt.

Went out again on the 17th, thinking the run was going to hit and again we were disappointed. We did hit a nice mess of fish about an hour before high tide up until high tide and then there was nothing. We bagged 55 in my boat and my neighbor got another 33 in his boat so we have enough to get us through the winter for eight families. We probably would like to make one more run if the numbers increase significantly but then we have lots of processing to do yet so maybe we will supplement with some silvers next month.

Only one day of king fishing this year on opening day and we never saw a fish caught so I think king fishing is out for us for a few years. Too bad such a wonderful fishery has been over fished and wiped out along with the king crab in Homer and the halibut in all of south central Alaska. Will we learn when to turn off the fishing before we wipe them all out?? Guess it is time to start planning on dipping pinks!

ANGLER:  sm96744
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER: 
SPECIES:  Lost and Found

REPORT: Please label all your gear with name & cell phone #. If you forget it or lose it

someone may call. Stan :)

ANGLER:  Fishonbruceak
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River near Sterling
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Fished yesterday evening for a few hours. Got a limit but only through suffering a lot of slow times. Fishin today, the 19th, and it has been dead slow all day. In the group of about 10 fishing only two reds caught and those were early on the day. Big hole in the river right now.

[AOJ: That hole is filling up on the night's tide. :-)]

~KLONDIKE KID'S 7/19 SATURDAY MORNING NEW NEWS~

10AM SATURDAY MORNING WAKE UP CALL: GOOD MORNING ALASKA!

Starting with the most important item: ADFG Commfish will NOT be fishing the Beach Site Set Nets TODAY, Saturday. The Kasilof River Special Harvest Area (KRSHA from now on) will be fishing today at the river mouth until 11pm tonight. The DRIFT Fleet is also fishing Saturday in the expanded Kasilof/Kenai Corridor from 7am to 7pm but won't be fishing Area 1 which means Northbound salmon heading for Upper Cook Inlet will be getting some relief from the nets today. Git along little doggies, the wolves are right behind you!

SONAR SOCKEYE COUNTS:
KASILOF River count for FRIDAY was 18,700.
KENAI River count for FRIDAY was 39,000. Damn, missed it by 1000. :-) The Midnight to 7AM SATURDAY count was ONLY 3300. Go back to bed!

OTF INDEXES:
SOUTH Boat on FRIDAY = 215 with all stations fished.
NORTH Boat on FRIDAY = 88 with all stations fished. This snap shot indicated that late yesterday the offshore fish were relatively evenly spread out between the Kasilof test fish line and the Kenai test fish line. But realize that fish caught in the Kasilof line may be heading for the Kenai and not Kasilof. When the numbers break out for the Kenai test fish line you can figure those fish are definitely heading to the Kenai specifically. I'll let you know when the Kenai line "lights up" with fish.

Please remember, one group of fish, like the 240 school from last week, has been hammered by the Drift Fleet every day that they have been able to fish. With low OTF indexes both in front and behind that big test day, the impacts of fish numbers finally REACHING the Kenai may be minimized. It happened last year when the Drifters caught hundreds of thousands of reds in two days in an offshore school that just would NOT come into the river. The Good News is there is a very steady pulse of fish established behind that 240 number. Its called The Salmon Run. :-)

MARINE CONDITIONS:
Anchor Point Small Craft Advisory with SW winds to 25 knots and seas to 5 feet. Maybe that will drive the fish under the Drift nets. Tonight and into Sunday the winds shift out of the West at 30 knots and seas to 8 feet. ROUGH SEAS make catching salmon in a drift net much tougher. A Plus for us. Winds calm down Sunday afternoon.

North of Kalgin Island: (our area) Wind out of the South at 15 knots laying down some in the afternoon. This may present some Surf Break on the dippers today. South wind also pushes the salmon PAST the river mouth and they end up doubling back and arrive coming from the North Beach direction. Saturday night the wind shifts out of the WEST so there will be flat seas along the Kenai beaches. Sunday the wind lays down out of the NW for minimal beach wave action. As always that is the MARINE NOAA Forecast which is subject to change, LIKE THE WEATHER. HA. But those guys are pretty good at it.

AT THIS TIME: We are still in the Kenai Sockeye Management Plan level of 12 Hours MAXIMUM per week for the General Kasilof and Kenai District set nets with the exception of the KRSHA nets at the mouth of the Kasilof and the Drift Fleet. SUNDAY resets the week and the Hours Bank. With no fishing Saturday that means the beach sites have either one 12 hour shot at this week's fish or maybe two 6 hour periods. The rest of the beach-running fish are YOURS!

Lastly, watch out for any news on the ADFG Commfish Final Calculation and Estimate of Total Kenai Sockeye Run Projection. If we cross the line into the next higher level, many factors change. See discussion in the 3AM news. Still so many variables yet to sort themselves out. As you can see, its a complicated year for everyone!

Good Luck, Good Dipping, Good Fishing, and WEAR YOUR PFD at all times when in the boat. Drive Safe.


ANGLER:  Rick G
TRIP DATE:  7/19
REGION:  Matsu Valley
WATER:  Eklutna Tailrace
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Went down to the Tailrace this am for some action. I fished for about 3 hours.

I saw 2 fish roll and 3 landed. It wasn't packed with people but, those that were fishing were considerate. I'll keep posting on Valley streams. I'm switching gears and going North for some Bow action.

[AOJ: Be sure to check this week's ADFG Matsu Valley Weekly Fishing Report to see where chums and pinks and perhaps a silver or two are beginning to in the Parks streams.]

ANGLER:  Phil
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai - Swiftwater
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Fished for reds at Swiftwater Park in the morning. "Slow fishing" is being kind. Saw fewer that a half dozen caught by the crowded shore anglers. No fish!! Drove north to the Russian and fished at the confluence for a few more hours. Saw perhaps another 8-10 caught there. No fish for us again. Did catch and released a nice 24-26 inch 'bow.

[AOJ: Still fish moving in spurts up the river. Same for the dippers. Slow then a pocket of fish move through. The river reports are the same all through town - the "bite" is on and then a lull. Things will be changing in a couple of days.]

ANGLER:  CMoney_14
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai Beach - North Shore
SPECIES:  Sockeye

REPORT: Hit the north shore beach on the PM high tide. Fought some pretty massive waves, was over my head at times. Managed to get into a nice pocket of Reds for about thirty minutes. Managed to get four, lost one. Snagged a nice steelhead trout to. All in all, it was a good day.

ANGLER:  Bluedrifter
TRIP DATE:  7/16
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth
SPECIES:  Dipping for Reds

REPORT: Dipped from a boat Wednesday and Thursday with moderate success. Some times were quite slow while other times it was pretty good. Definitely not the big slug I thought would hit the river. I'd say its a little late this year. I did want to give some advice to some of my fellow boat dippers. If you are operating your boat severely overweight you are putting yourself and others in danger. I saw way to many small boats with 5-6 people in them plus several large coolers of fish plowing up river because they were so over gross. Its only a matter of time before some one swamps a boat. The water is awfully cold and the current is strong. Please go up river on step and don't plow up river. Also over the course of two days i saw several boats "parked" on the sand bars. I hope they brought picknic baskets with them because its a long day between tides. Take the time to learn the river and watch for the shallows! Be safe and remember to be polite. We all share this resource together!

ANGLER:  learnintofish
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  North Beach Kenai River - Dipnetting
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: KK,

Your predictions for craziness were spot on. We attempted to "beat" the weekend craziness and left Anchorage at 3am yesterday. We've never dipped on a Friday before and didn't realize that so many people do the same thing and that Friday is apparently considered a weekend day to fish. The fish were there, but so were A TON of people. The morning incoming tide didn't produce a lot of fish; the outgoing am tide was really hot from about 12:30pm-1:30pm and then slowed down. The beaches just kept getting more crowded and crowded. I lost 4 fish during the "hot" time because every time I went to bring my fish in I'd bump into people or their nets and lose my fish. We did get 2 fish for the day. I noticed that people with longer nets or wetsuits were pulling them in much more frequently. It was seriously elbow to elbow, so we decided to call it a day around 2 and come back when its not so crazy (not sure if that exists anymore or not). On our way back home to Anchorage almost 70% of the vehicles that we passed had dipnets. I can't even imagine what that beach looks like today. On a side note, Alaska people I am very impressed with how nice people are even with the chaos and craziness down there. Even with it elbow to elbow, it was easy to make conversations with people around and laugh.

[AOJ: Yes indeed, when you are within "ear shot" of a half dozen people and their conversations its always easy to chime in with some additional chatter and camaraderie. There are always a few good stories to listen to or pass on. When its slow there is nothing else to do although I have been known to take a power nap leaning on my handle braced on my shoulder! Those people who criticize this fishery and user group just don't get it. ITS AN ALASKAN THING found no were else in America........and we LIKE IT!

P.S. Watch the numbers. Next week you should do much better and find out what its really like on a big hit day.]



~KLONDIKE KID'S 7/19 SATURDAY MORNING NEWS~

3AM SATURDAY MORNING WAKE UP CALL: Make that 4AM now!

Yes its true! This coming week will see some major numbers of reds hitting the Kenai (and some for Kasilof too). The Lower Cook Inlet is loading up with strong movements of salmon that are miles long and wide. The South Boat OTF has been building from a low of 18 to 75 to 117 to 174 and finally for FRIDAY it was up to 215. As the test fishing is just a moment in time "snap shot" of what is passing through the test fishing area from day to day, continued big numbers and a building trend mean it is pretty much a continuous mega-school of fish.

Thursday's Kenai king sonar count came in at 502. This run is trending DEAD ON the four year average timing to the day. So Thursday was the PEAK of the biggest count day in the run yet it was only half of what the average run count would be. Following this trend, a couple more days of peak and its downhill after that.

This latest king number added to the database gives me a Run Projection of exactly 11,000 kings by the end of the run at the current entry rate into the Kenai River not counting the deduction for over 400 kings harvested in the sport fishery. At 27% below the minimum escapement goal for these fish, I don't see how we can even get through this weekend without the King Management Plan requiring an immediate closure of this fishery.

ADFG Commfish had not decided whether they were going to fish the Beach Site nets on Saturday after the mandatory closure period ends at 11am. (They will make that determination on Saturday morning after further assessment of fish concentrations and perhaps the Friday king count too.) Personally with the king projection at such a low number I can't see any justification in fishing the nets for even one more day. The Board of Fish redesigned the King Salmon and Sockeye Salmon Management Plans this Spring to recognize a vital need to protect our king salmon runs during this extreme mortality crisis we are experiencing in every king salmon run in mainland Alaska. So I'm kinda scratching my head on these delays. The Plans are very clear as to the directions the Department MUST take as events unfold that require out-of-the-norm management practices. I'm not criticizing the Department - the fishery will be shut down without a doubt in my mind. But with the importance our BOF put on saving our kings I'm a bit puzzled. After all, the Commfish Beach Site fishers have already had a fairly decent catch and income in a year when its the worst in history for a Kenai king run. See my HARVEST DATA TABLE BELOW.

OK, MEGA REDS! I think the 240 school is going to be moving into the Kenai on Saturday with perhaps the scouts already tasting the freshwaters of the river late Friday. The NORTH BOAT partial OTF on Friday after fishing 3 of the 8 stations was reported at 50. I don't know if they finished all stations. The Friday sockeye sonar count at 5PM was up to 29,000 and at that rate it should come close to the 40K I predicted Friday morning. Fishing still isn't that hot!! The best anglers ARE getting limits and even proxy limits with a lot of time and work. But there are a lot of rods with not much action for the numbers that are being counted. ?? Deja vu? God I hope not or there will be riots in the streets. HEHEH

This coming week is going to be what I had been forecasting for the dippers and sporties. With the beach sites held to 12 hrs max. per week at this moment, there is little they can do to stop a MILLION or TWO REDS heading up the Inlet during the remainder of this run. The Drift Fleet will be fished hard to the maximum allowable hours the Plan provides for runs of this size.

>>>>In the next couple days ADFG Commfish will be making a new Kenai Sockeye Run Projection based on the current data and OTFs. If the run is projected much higher than earlier expectations it could allow a LOT of additional Drift Fleet net time. But when that number comes in at the next Plan level, it IMMEDIATELY TRIGGERS 24 HOURS of DIPNETTING and SIX REDS per day sport limits. So that is another variable that may provide a change overnight for the two non-commercial user groups. That number will be coming out soon.

Here is how well the Commercial fishermen have done with their harvest in COOK INLET to date:
East Side Set Nets (beach sites) 469,361 SOCKEYE. 1,124 KINGS.
Upper Cook Inlet DRIFT Fleet 1,079,598 SOCKEYE. 21,694 COHO. 163,559 PINKS. 69,702 CHUMS. 228 KINGS.

So the commies have caught 1.5 MILLION reds so far and here in the Kenai our Sockeye count has not even hit 350,000 yet.

For you Valley and Knik and Ship Creek (Bird too) anglers the Drift Fleet on July 17th caught nearly 13,000 COHO in their nets. These are NOT Peninsula run fish. They are heading up North. So you folks may be seeing a big jump up on Silver numbers in your streams this coming week. I'm charting Deshka and Little Su and Fish Creek coho for you to monitor.

Good Luck, Good Dipping, Good Fishing, and WEAR YOUR PFD at all times when in the boat. Drive Safe. It's just getting started!


ANGLER:  Kardinal_84
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Upper and Lower Kenai
SPECIES:  Rainbows, Dollies, & Sockeyes

REPORT: So quick report from camp. With everything dead for us we had to improvise.

Thursday I floated the upper Kenai from sportsman to Jim's. Saw eagles and a bear up close. The fishing was slow until we found a few small sloughs that produced a dozen nice rainbows, dolly, and a bonus mint bright sockeye. The other observation was the thousands of sockeyes milling in the slow water. Some were blushed. Some were bright. None were tomatoes. Hmmm...



Friday after hearing the dippers hit a few on the evening tide I try floating from Centennial Park to Cunningham Park. Thousands of anglers, maybe a dozen fish I saw hooked. I did see two kings hooked in the Lower River.

Decided I better fish a few hours since I made it down river in about 2hrs. Scratched out three over 2.5 hours I think. I got lucky. Very few fish in the water from what I could see.

So I guess in spoiled. A limit in three hours seems like a pretty good deal. Still, where are the reds? I thought I had it figured out but this spotiness is unusual I think.

Shouldn't forget, GF hammers two on Wed night. Almost a limit till a fistfight breaks out right next to her. Lol. It's the crazy season for sure.

I met some super nice folks on the river today. Enjoyed fishing with them and appreciated the netting help! I'd like to think more folks are like the folks I fished with!!! Be courteous! Have fun!!!!


ANGLER:  Brad P
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Bird Creek
SPECIES:  Pink, Silvers, Dogs

REPORT: Fished the outgoing and incoming tides at Bird Creek yesterday evening. I must have found the lucky fishing hole cause my buddy and I landed 10-12 total in about 3 hours. Had to let 4 or 5 go due to illegal hook sets. I seen a few others land some, but not very many. One guy even pulled out a mountain bike with tons of gear snagged on it. At least 4 were mine. Lol End of the day we had 3 silver, 1 dog and the rest pinks. It was great to see a lot of young anglers out fishing.

ANGLER:  Duchess
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Campbell Creek
SPECIES:  Trout

REPORT: Been busy with classes lately so haven't gotten much in fishing wise so I figured with a couple spare hours I'd hit something local for a change. I've heard people talking about fishing upper Campbell Creeks for trout and since I live off Elmore it seems like a good idea.

Flipped a coin and got north fork. Parked at MOA public works and headed up towards the Elmore bridge. Homeless camp but empty, looked occupied. Pressed on got through the grass and startled a mother moose and pair of calves. She wasn't feeling it so I high tailed it out and headed downstream. Walked the trail as the grass was pretty close to face height along the bank.

Got to where the south and north meet up and fished around there with no luck. As I was leaving I spooked 3 tomatoe red kings. I figure if there are salmon there should be trout somewhere near. The trio looked like they were headed up the south fork? Maybe I'll give that one a go next time. I'll give it a whirl again another day. All and all I'd do it again just for the walk.

If anyone has any advice about trout fishing in this watershed (at least the upper parts) I'm all ears.

ANGLER:  jorge cosio
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Hope
SPECIES: 

REPORT: I lost a Boston red Sox hat in the parking lot of hope it has a pair of sunglasses on top call me at (907) 240-7353 if you find them please I'll be in hope tomorrow.

ANGLER:  ak49ak
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Glacier Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers, Pinks

REPORT:
Hit the creek got one pink but no silvers few pinks in there tried to make it too the second Creek but found this to change my mind. Be safe everyone.

ANGLER:  Da Butcher
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kasilof River - Dipping
SPECIES:  Slamming sockeyes

REPORT: Wow! After driving over the Ames bridge all week I was very happy to hear my friend Ed wanted to hit the Kasilof instead! I highly recommend this! No fees, four other boats and 44 fish boated in three hours...yeah I know they are supposed to be smaller, but I tell ya... At least a full third were just as big as average Kenai reds!

[AOJ: Its going to be tougher dipping there from here on out. The Kasilof River Special Harvest Area will be fishing nets right off the mouth of the river pretty steady from now on to stop as many reds into the Kasilof as possible. So there will be good days/tides and bad ones.]

ANGLER:  FishingDisciple
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai River Mouth - North Beach
SPECIES:  Reds

REPORT: Went to Kenai north beach to dip net this week. Was in the water off and on Wednesday and Thursday. My wife and I managed 15 for both days. Was really slow for the most part.

This morning we went out at 6am and caught 20 between 6:30am and 8:00am. Odd thing was we were getting them closer to shore. My wife was using a net from Mike's Welding with only a 6 ft handle. As soon as she picked up her first two I moved my net in closer and started getting them too. Was a tough couple days but the patience paid off!

Good luck and be safe!

[AOJ: If it was any easier and a guarantee there would be no "fun" in it.]

ANGLER:  3s1k
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Ship Creek
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: First time Poster, long time lurker. My dad was up bright and early this morning at Ship Creek right at Low Tide. He fished over by the bridge restaurant and managed to land this Silver. He said last night during hide tide their were a bunch of rollers in the same spot.

Looks like I'll be passing on Kenai this weekend and hitting up Ship Creek instead to avoid the crowds. In my 20yrs of fishing in Alaska I have never caught a Silver, so this year will be my year. Thanks for all the time you put in updating us daily of all things fishing. I refresh your page and check for FB status all day every day. Thanks again.

[AOJ: Always nice to see another AOJ regular come out of the shadows and pull up a stump around the campfire! There should be plenty of reds next week. Work on those silvers while most of your competition is down here on the Kenai.]


ANGLER:  BB
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Anchorage
WATER:  Bird Creek
SPECIES:  Pinks, pinks, and a dolly

REPORT: Fished the low tide this morning nothing but pinks. My fish slaying partner caught one Dolly also. No silvers did see a few ruby red kings roll. All in all it was a good morning fishing, made the work day better.

ANGLER:  MNViking
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Kenai - Bings
SPECIES:  Reds + fish cleaning issue

REPORT: I got lucky and found my swing this morning for a limit of reds. The high water makes cleaning fish by rapids hole difficult to impossible. The fish cleaning tables at the launch have been removed and the campground hosts will not allow fish cleaning anywhere near the launch or docks which is forcing people to clean them in the woods creating a possible bear situation.

~KLONDIKE KID'S 7/18 FRIDAY MORNING NEWS~

10AM FRIDAY DIPPERS AND SPORTIES HOTLINE NEWS:

Here we go. But first a NOTEWORTHY Addendum to this write up that needs passing on.

There was some "inflection" in the tone of today's Commfish Announcement that indicated IF the Kenai King Salmon COUNTS turn around and start projecting above the minimum escapement goals, it is LIKELY that the CnR and the 12 hrs restrictions on the Beach Sites would be rescinded. Just to give you all a heads up. This ain't over til its over so we are still in a day to day king salmon assessment mode that can reverse course. I personally give it low odds of happening, but never say never. But this scenario DID unfold for the Little Su king salmon fishery which had been closed and then reopened as the fish counts improved.

  1. The pulse of fish moving into the Kenai River mouth on Thursday has reached Soldotna area early Friday morning with impressive numbers. A recognizable friend of mine said the fish hit at 5am and he had filled his 3 fish limit and his proxy by 6:13am here in Town.

  2. The pulse of fish continues to stream through Soldotna at the counter this morning. The Midnight to 7am Kenai sockeye count was at 16,000 fish already. If this is a sustainable pulse at this rate we will have the biggest day's count so far and perhaps topping 40,000. But things can be spotty. And if it was just a SCHOOL there is always a tail end of it with things tapering off. Just have to fish it to find out.

  3. BEACH SITE SET NETS: By Management Plan regulations, the minute the Catch and Release was announced for the Kenai King Salmon Sport Fishery the set net restrictions went into effect automatically. The Beach Sites are now restricted to a MAXIMUM of 12 hours per week fishing time.

  4. The Mandatory 36 Hour Beach Site nets Closure Window began at 11pm Thursday night and will extend to 11am Saturday morning. Its still being determined whether the hours fished yesterday will count towards the maximum hours per week as defined by this next level of the Management Plan restrictions. So the beach sites May or might not fish on Saturday after 11am. We have to wait and see what the determination is on that. The Kasilof Special Harvest Area might fish around the mouth depending on fish numbers moving towards the river. Sunday is the new week and a new bank of 12 hours to fish.

  5. SONAR COUNTS:
    KASILOF River for Thursday was 9100. At 7am the counter was at 2000. Pretty slow there today.
    KENAI River for Thursday was 33,000. At 7am this morning the counter was at 16,000 fish. A fishable day. But be in the right spot. Reports this morning are its SPOTTY and if its a school of fish there may be a drop off. You know how fishing is.
    STERLING Section of the River: Should see improving fishability early Saturday morning as far as much better numbers moving through. It will continue to improve all day as what is in Soldotna this morning will be in Sterling tomorrow.

  6. OTF INDEXES:
    SOUTH Boat OTF on Thursday ended up at 161.
    NORTH Boat OTF on Thursday ended up at 78.
    This was for all stations fished by both boats.

  7. The DRIFT Fleet is fishing today offshore from 10am to 10pm.

  8. EXPECT SUPER CROWDS in the Dipnet Fishery through the weekend. The towns have little parking or camping available now. Still the Walmart parking lot. Diamond M Llama Pasture is nearly full of RVs, campers, boats, and ATVs on K Beach. It will be Crazy on the beaches I'm sure, and INSANE on the River for boat dippers guaranteed. You won't see me at either spot.

  9. Consult the middle of the Regulations Booklet for a map and lists of places that are public access fishing spots along the Kenai River if you don't have a favorite spot or are new.

  10. Its time to start putting some fish in the freezer! It will only improve as the run progresses.

Good Luck, Good Dipping, Good Fishing, and WEAR YOUR PFD at all times when in the boat. Drive Safe. It's just getting started!


ANGLER:  This Butt's For You
TRIP DATE:  7/18
REGION:  Kenai Peninsula
WATER:  Seward - Pony Cove & Day Cove
SPECIES:  Silvers

REPORT: Fished Day and Pony Cove yesterday. Managed 4 at Day between 2 of us. We went to Pony Cove for one more each. Got them but it took a long time. Trollers were doing OK, but not great either. Both sites were hit or miss throughout the day.

The fish were swimming deep (85-115 feet in 240+ plus feet of water). Big schools would swim by according to sonar, but not a lot of hook ups. My sonar must be counting bubbles or these fish just got out of the buffet. Fishing this deep resulted in two small rockfish.

Any ideas why they're swimming that deep? In years past, typically caught them in 40-50 feet regularly. No sea lions or whales nearby.

And a belated thanks for the information on the Copper River poles.

[AOJ: I have seen them suspended off the bottom out off the Seward beaches at over 200 feet. And was filming on an anchored charter in 160 feet of water and mooching needed to drop all the way to the bottom to get fish. But then if you bring in that one fish slowly, its struggles and flashes make others think a feeding frenzy has started and they start looking for bait and following the hooked fish.

Another reason they might be on the bottom may be their food is down there. I found out there is a mysterious little bottom fish in the bay that silvers love to eat so that could be drawing them down if no herring or sandlance are in the area in mid-column water.]



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