Late King Salmon Run
ANGLERS PLEASE NOTE: With the ADFG changeover from Bendix sonar to Didson sonar the early run of Kenai River king salmon charting database has been adjusted to reflect only the counts since the year 2010. This standardizes the data for comparison purposes and more accurate trending as compared to previous years with the same counting method and equipment. This chart will be updated at least twice weekly as numbers become available. This temporary chart will be updated to the new numbers before the run begins July 1st.
This is the strongest of the two king salmon runs for the Kenai River. It occurs during the month of July.
Most anglers plan to fish during the time when fish are most abundant and when the largest fish are present. Naturally this creates a veritable traffic jam on the river. With nearly 350 registered guide boats and hundreds of private boats on the river, this is no "wilderness experience." Often there may be 50-100 boats fishing a particular stretch of the river or hole. Boats may only be a few feet apart and at times its a wonder that any hooked fish are landed at all on the most crowded days.
Guided boat anglers may only fish the Kenai River on Tuesday through Saturday during the month of July. All motorized boat fishing is prohibited on Mondays, whether guided or private boats. Regulations will now allow unguided anglers the opportunity to fish on Mondays from non-motorized boats, i.e. primarily drift boats, although rafts and canoes fall into this category too. This regulation is intended to offer the private angler a chance for some excellent fishing on the Kenai on a day when no motorized anglers will be competing. Consult the Sport Fish Regulations booklet for further details.
Fishing can still be done from the riverbank but good bankfishing areas are few and far between on the river and landing a large fish requires the skills of an expert angler as well as some very stout gear.....but it has be done.
The most successful fishing day of the week during July is usually on Tuesday since the river has had no fishing pressure during the preceding day and extra fish have had an unrestricted opportunity to enter the system. These are also the days when you will see the most boats and anglers on the river. The next most popular day is on Saturday since it is the only weekend day that guides can take anglers fishing for king salmon.
Due to the Kenai River's popularity and accessibility, angler success rates on the Kenai River for king salmon are quite low and require, on average, many hours of fishing time for each fish caught. AOJ provides the yearly data on guided and unguided angler success on the Kenai River. Catching a king can be the biggest thrill of your life...if you are one of the lucky ones. AOJ advises all traveling anglers to review the Kenai River King Angler Success Statistics when planning your fishing trip so that you can gauge your expectations to your chances.
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