Kenai Peninsula

Kenai Report 6-30-10 PDF Print E-mail

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The Upper Kenai River opened this week with prime water conditions, and big Rainbows were in battle formations ready to pull anglers' chains after a long winter. The first run of Sockeye have arrived on the Upper Kenai heading for the Legendary Russian River, a main tributary of the Upper Kenai River. Magnum Trout and Char are using these five to seven pound chromers as meat shields to navigate up the river into the Combat Zone where hundreds of pounds of Sockeye carcass, guts, and egg sacs are being thrown back into the river by mobs of blood thirsty, frenzied salmon anglers below the confluence of the Russian and Kenai Rivers. Trout anglers dead drifting micro flesh flies and 8mm beads in the deeper runs and drops below the Salmon Apocalypse are getting their rotator cuffs stretched to the max.


The Kenai River Canyon is also producing some mega results in the Boils and deep cliff runs for some big native red stripers and transitional Chrome out of Skilak Lake. Again, flesh and egg patterns are standard connectors, however do not hesitate to swing some big leeches in the mix. The River delta into Skilak is especially kicking down on the swing, but be prepared to get embarrassed when that ultra rainbow pulls a figure- eight 360 swirl maneuver and wraps your neckpiece with fly line.


The middle Kenai River is throwing down some epic leech fishing for Rainbows from the outlet down to the Killey River Tributary. Trout anglers swinging deep with big 4-6 inch Loop Leeches in Black, Brown, and Olive are getting crushed on the swing. Massive schools of smolt are boiling out of Skilak Lake and the setting is straight out of Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” with Arctic terns and Loons swarming on the feed. Below the Killey River, articulated flesh flies in white, grey, and cream are lighting it up in the “dirty water” below this trib. I would highly recommend upgrading your tippets to the 12lb class in this stretch of water as the Rainbows here are completely on another level and hand out free lessons like you have never seen.

More Reports to follow




Kenai Report 6-23-10 PDF Print E-mail

Billy has been out on the river non-stop of late, so we talked to Duane at Troutfitters on the Kenai to get the lowdown.

Sockeye are starting off slow this year in the Russian River although a big slug of fish just passed the weir on June 22. It is hard to say if this is going to be a low number year for the early run sockeye or if they are just a little late (like they were in 2008) and the numbers will jump up as a big surge pushes in. If you are heading to the Russian/Kenai confluence to target sockeye, be prepared to spend some time getting your fish.

Trout fishing in both the Upper and Middle Kenai has been pretty good. Even though there are not big carcass piles at the Russian, flesh patterns are still getting the job done. Articulated Lady Flesh , Dirty Socks , and other washed out flesh colors are go-to flies. If you are fishing the MIddle, trout are looking for last year's flesh getting stirred up in Skilak Lake and washed down the river. Try Articulated Lady Flesh or other long, slim profile flesh patterns. Swinging leeches has also been productive.

Egg patterns are pretty much a year round tactic on the Kenai. On the Upper 6mm and 8mm fresh bead colors are effective. These are imitating eggs coming out of sockeye that were caught and cleaned on the Russian. You can also try dead egg colors in 6mm to imitate eggs left over from the spring trout spawn. Washed Pink , Peach Fuzz , and Apricot Swirl are all good bets.

Finally, the window to fish dries has just fired up on the Upper Kenai and the Russian River. Caddis hatches have been reported so don't miss out on the chance to catch a really nice trout on a dry!

More Kenai Fish Reports to come soon. 

Preseason 2010 PDF Print E-mail

The Kenai River opens to trout fishing in early June. Billy will post his first report then.


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.




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