Kenai Peninsula

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,

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
Kenai River Report 7-5-09 PDF Print E-mail

Trout fishing on the Upper Kenai this week between Sportsman’s and Jim’s Landing has turned “ultra-tech” as water flows continue to drop and the water clarity is New Zealand caliber. Old School Kenai River fly fishing tactics have been nullified, and anglers approaching the drift ninja style are hooking slabs. The Centerpin anglers have been killing it with 3lb tippets and 150 foot dead drifts, and fly fisherman with skills to pay the bills are connecting with ultra micro flesh, 4mm beads, and dry flies. This is not a beginner-friendly section of river at this time, but if anglers are looking for a challenge, strap on your guile suit and be prepared to get humbled.

The Kenai River Canyon is producing some awesome fishing this week. Deeper water and less sun exposure is putting some big trout at ease, and fly fisherman who know how to drift the complex boils and back eddies are consistently going airborne with red stripe natives and Skilak Chromers. Be ready for that magnum Dolly to put you in a log jam!

The Middle Kenai River this week continues to amaze and humble anglers. Water clarity from Skilak Lake to the Killey River has become crystal clear again, and anglers who can successfully present flies away from their boats are seeing hot tub size boils on the takedown. Big leech patterns are getting crushed as well as big articulated flesh. Fishing from the Killey River to Bings Landing is still worthy. Big Rainbows are concentrated and stacked up in key spots and are ready for battle. Big Flesh and 10mm beads are starting fights and anglers should be ready to go 12 rounds.

More reports to follow. Billy

(Editors note: Check out the fine rainbow landed this past week by Sam Wronoski.)

Kenai River Report 6-29-09 PDF Print E-mail


Trout fishing on the Upper Kenai this week has turned on strong. Sockeye salmon numbers are starting to thin out, and the rainbow trout are moving back into their heavy-hitter feeding lanes. The carcass piles in the Upper Kenai are colossal, and Pro Anglers that are coming prepared with Micro-Flesh Flies in all stages of decay are drinking lots of beers in the evening. The Kenai River Canyon is producing big fish in the boils, and the river delta into Skilak Lake is pulling chains daily.

The Russian River this week also is producing some world class dry fly fishing from the falls downstream to the campground. Big size 10 Parachute Hare's Ears are bringing them up from the depths, as well as Prince Nymphs and PT's in size 12 and 14. The dry fly fishery should remain good through Mid-July until the second run of sockeye salmon start flooding this gin clear river.

The Middle Kenai River this week continues to throw down some big Chrome. 4 inch leeches and Articulated Flesh are still pounding from the Lake to Bing’s Landing. Don't be scared to throw Mr. Hankey around in the back channels!


More reports to follow. Billy
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