Kenai Peninsula


Kenai End of Season Report PDF Print E-mail

kenai rainbow.jpgThe Kenai served up some epic fishing in 2009 and hopefully you got in on some of it. A brief recap of the season:

Trout fishing was hot and heavy right from the opener. This had a lot to do with one of the most massive early runs of reds in years. The bag limit for reds was increased and if they were your target you likely got a work out and maybe broke a rod or two. By early July the water dropped and cleared and a week of ultra-tough fishing followed. The big slabs were there but if you could see them, they could see you. Super stealth techniques were the rule of the day.

What brought the humbling fishing to an end was water. Lots of water. Alaska got hit by a heat wave and the river rose up givng anglers some much needed camoflage. The game was back on. As July turned into August, the second run reds flooded the river. A month of crazed trout fishing followed. By September, it seemed like things couldn't keep going at this pace but they did. Gorgeous trout and Dolly Varden fat from a season of eating and still trying to pack on a few more pounds before the dark time. As the last of the sockeye thinned out, big crhome could be found by swinging flesh and leeches. It was at this time that Billy and a client landed a fish that was almost too big to believe. 35 1/4" X 22". (See the 10/3/09 Report if you haven't already.) kenai in spring.jpg

We really enjoyed bringing you the Kenai Report this year and can't thank Billy Coulliette and his guides at Troutfitters for bringing the straight scoop to all of us every week. If you would like to fish with Billy and his crew in 2010 click here and we'll make it happen.

The Kenai Report will resume in June 2010 right after the river opens up.

 

 
Kenai Report 10-03-09 PDF Print E-mail

september-bow.jpgCheck it out! An unbelievable 35 1/4" x 22" girth rainbow on a swung flesh fly. Absolutely off the charts.

With fall temperatures here, the Kenai water level has dropped and fishing conditions are prime. Just about all the sockeye salmon have finished spawning and died off. The egg drop may be over but the flesh eating season is in full swing. 

Most of the rainbows are dropping down from the refuge into the canyon section just above Skilak Lake. The Middle River is also prime country for big bows. Swinging big flesh flies as well as leeches is producing fish. And while huge number days are not the norm, some of the biggest fish of the season are coming out of the river.

Don't forget about silvers, too. The second run of silvers is moving in and both the middle river and the upper have big chromers. Try fishing early in the day to get the grabbiest fish. After mid-morning they get pretty tight lipped. Stripping streamers like Egg Hareball Leches in Purple/Shell  Pink and Black/Red is deadly.

Good luck and we will post another report soon.

 

 

 

 
Kenai River Report 9-17-09 PDF Print E-mail

kenai_rainbow_september600.jpg(Editor's Note: Billy is guiding non-stop these days so we are filling in for this report. We can't duplicate his writing style so we won't even try!)

The Upper Kenai is game on for rainbows and Dollies. There are still hoards of sockeye spawning and 6mm and even 8mm beads are working their magic. Look for reds that are paired up and spawning and fish behind them. There are a lot of reds that are done spawning and just hanging on till the bitter end. These "short-timers" don't attract nearly the attention from the trout that the active spawners do.

Flesh and big leeches are just about to come into their own. At this time, there are still too many sockeye around to effectively swing flies without foul hooking fish left and right. Hopefully, in the next 10 days to two weeks the sockeye will thin out and the bows and Dollies will start looking for huge hunks of flesh and big meaty leeches.

The Middle River is super hot, too. The kings are pretty well done and gone. The two miles of river below Skilak Lake still has a bunch of reds spawning and 6mm and 8mm beads are where it is at. Lots of big trout are relocating from all over the lower Kenai to this stretch of river for the last egg feeding frenzy of the season. 

Below this two mile stretch, the spawners thin out and swinging big leeches and flesh is the technique of choice. 

We'll have another report in about 10 days!

 
Kenai River Report 7-19-09 PDF Print E-mail

landing-a-jumper.jpgFly Fishing on the Upper Kenai this week is Pro Status. Big Water conditions and super selective trout are taking amateurs to school, and trout veterans are pulling out all the stops. Chrome Second Run Sockeye are in a holding formation in Skilak Lake and continue to send early run, big burner red scouts into the Upper battlefield . Until this swarm of chrome infiltrates the Upper Kenai, Fly Fisherman should read Lafontaine’s  Legacy: The Last Flies from an American Master by AL Beatty and take some serious notes.

The Middle Kenai this week is a War Zone. Chrome Sockeye by the tens of thousands are making their exodus into the Upper River and waters are running blood red like the River Styx. These rod-snapping ultras are not playing games, and anglers should be prepared for lacerations. Trout fishing is traditionally slow during these mega-runs, however anglers drifting carcass and 12mm beads along the banks are going to the bank with pounds of chrome.

I would like to give a shout to my friend Johnny Witlatch of Reel Adventures on the Kenai River for living up to his word as a true Catch and Release King Salmon Guide. Earlier this week, Johnny and his friend Joel Atchison released the sixth biggest King Salmon ever caught in the World. A fish estimated at  90+ pounds. It is these Legendary Giants that produce the Biggest King Salmon and native Rainbow Trout in the world. Legendary!

More reports to follow,

Billy
 
Kenai River Report 7-12-09 PDF Print E-mail

rainbow over the side.jpgTrout fishing on the Upper Kenai River this week has turned on again. High temperatures have been melting the glaciers and snow pack, giving the Upper Kenai more water and silt. This has put some big trout back on the bite and fly fishermen once again are back in the game. Second run Sockeye Salmon are beginning to trickle into the Upper River and along with them are big ravenous packs of Dolly Varden. These Char-manders are on the prowl throughout the Upper Kenai and should not be slept on. Fresh  6 mm and 8 mm caliber beads are deadly weapons, and anglers should strap on their combat boots for the Char Battle. Some magnum rainbows have been getting hit in the crossfire as well on Peachy Orange Twofer and Chocker flesh flies.

The Kenai River Canyon continues to fish strong this week. Higher water levels are pushing lots of carcasses around in the boils and rainbows are feasting on meat like a Friday night at Sizzler Steakhouse. Try offering up a big Barely Legal in washed out pink and 6mm beads make a fine dessert. Dry flies are also working in select spots and some big fish will come up on big mayfly imitations. There is still a Trout Party going on at the river delta into Skilak Lake. Big Lake Rainbows and Dollies are pulling all nighters and anglers should be ready to get bounced out the back door into the lake.

The Middle Kenai River this week is still producing for trout anglers that are on their game. Big leeches are still producing from the lake to the Killey River in the early mornings and late evenings. Water levels continue to be ultra clear in the upper stretches and big trout with PHD'S continue to humble rookies. The Killey River is producing big silt flows with the Africa in Alaska temperatures, and fishing below the Killey is tough at this time. However, for those anglers that persist, there are some ultra magnum rainbows feeding heavy in the mud and a 9-10 weight rod is advisable.

More Reports to follow. Billy
 
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