Nate Rochon cleans fish after dipnetting in the Kasilof River, on June 25, 2019, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Nate Rochon cleans fish after dipnetting in the Kasilof River, on June 25, 2019, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

King closures continue; Kasilof dipnet opens Saturday

The early-run Kenai River king sport fishery remains closed, and fishing for kings of any size is prohibited

Closures continue for different fisheries in the Northern Kenai area, according to this week’s Northern Kenai fishing report from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game Division of Sport Fish.

Freshwater

The early-run Kenai River king sport fishery remains closed, and fishing for kings of any size is prohibited. Additionally, king salmon fishing is closed in the Kasilof River from the mouth upstream to Tustumena Lake, which includes both naturally produced and hatchery-produced salmon of any size. In the Upper Kenai and Russian rivers, sockeye fishing is good, the report said. As of June 22, the Russian River Sanctuary area and bag limits are set at six per day and 12 in possession, although anglers are reminded that they may possess only the limit allowed for the waters they are actively fishing. In the Lower Kenai, sockeye fishing has been fair to slow, according to the report. It is recommended to fish at Centennial Park, Rotary Park, Donald E. Gilman River Center, Soldotna Visitors Center, Moose Range Meadows or Soldotna Creek Park.

Personal Use

The personal use set gillnet fishery at the mouth of the Kasilof River closed Friday evening, but the Kasilof River dipnet fishery opens to fishing on Saturday. The dipnet fishery is open 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and an Upper Cook Inlet Personal Use permit is required, as well as a fishing license. Only Alaska residents can dipnet.

Local Lakes

Fishing for rainbow trout, Arctic char, Arctic grayling and land-locked salmon in area lakes is between good and excellent, the department said. Anglers are recommended to fish with dry or wet flies such as an egg-sucking leech, bead head nymph or mosquito pattern, small spoons and spinners size zero or two, or small bait under a bobber.

The Spirit Lake access gate is open, and was recently stocked with around 5,500 Arctic char averaging 9.3 inches long. Island Lake was also recently stocked with approximately 5,500 Arctic char averaging 9.3 inches long.

In addition, John Hedberg Lake was also recently stocked with 1,000 rainbow trout, and the department reported that fishing has been excellent. Around 1,600 catchable-sized rainbow trout were put in Johnson Lake, as well as 2,000 catchable-sized rainbow trout in Sport Lake.

Emergency Orders

Kasilof River

Emergency Order 2-RS-1-31-22 reduces the hours open during the personal use set gillnet fishery at the mouth of the Kasilof River. The hours open to fishing in the personal use set gillnet fishery will be reduced to 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. daily from Wednesday, June 15 through Friday, June 24, 2022.

Emergency Order 2-KS-1-30-22 prohibits the retention of king salmon in the Kasilof River effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, June 15 through 11:59 p.m. Friday, July 15, 2022. Fishing for king salmon of any size, including hatchery-origin fish is prohibited. Effective 12:01 a.m. Saturday, July 16 through 11:59 p.m. Sunday, July 31, 2022, from its mouth upstream to the Sterling Highway Bridge will be open to catch and release. Waters from the Sterling Highway Bridge upstream to the outlet of Tustumena Lake, 12:01 a.m. Saturday, July 16 through 11:59 p.m. Sunday, July 31, 2022, will remain closed to king salmon fishing and anglers are limited to only one unbaited, single-hook, artificial lure while fishing for other species.

Kenai River and Russian River

Emergency Order 2-RS-1-37-22 increases the bag and possession limits for salmon, other than king salmon, to six fish per day and 12 fish in possession in that area of the Kenai River upstream from Skilak Lake to ADF&G regulatory markers located approximately 300 yards upstream of the public boat launch at Sportsman’s Landing including the Russian River Sanctuary Area, and the Russian River from its mouth upstream to an ADF&G marker located approximately 600 yards downstream from the Russian River Falls at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, June 25 through 11:59 p.m. Thursday, July 14, 2022.

Emergency Order 2-RS-1-35-22 opens the Russian River Sanctuary Area to sport fishing from 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, June 22 through 11:59 p.m. Thursday, July 14, 2022.

Emergency Order 2-KS-1-22-22 supersedes prior Emergency Orders and will prohibit the retention of king salmon of all sizes in the Kenai River from the mouth upstream to the outlet of Skilak effective 12:01 am Wednesday, June 8 through 11:59 pm Thursday, June 30. Fishing for king salmon will remain closed from 12:01 a.m. Friday, July 1 through 11:59 p.m. Sunday, July 31, 2022, in waters of the Kenai River drainage from an ADF&G regulatory marker located approximately 300 yards downstream from the mouth of Slikok Creek, upstream to the outlet of Skilak Lake. This closure prohibits all sport fishing for king salmon, including catch and release fishing. King salmon may not be retained or possessed; king salmon accidentally caught while fishing for other species may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately. Additionally, in the Kenai River from its mouth upstream to an ADF&G regulatory marker located approximately 300 yards downstream from the mouth of Slikok Creek from 12:01 a.m. Friday, July 1, through 11:59 p.m. Sunday, July 31, 2022, is restricted to the use of only one unbaited, single-hook artificial lure, and anglers may not retain king salmon of any size. King salmon may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately.

Local Lakes

Emergency Order 2-NP-1-04-22 prohibits the retention of any species of fish in East Mackey, West Mackey, Sevena, Union and Derks lakes for the 2022 season.

Emergency Order 2-DV-1-03-22 establishes a bag and possession limit of Arctic char/Dolly Varden in Stormy Lake of one fish, less than 16 inches in length for the 2022 season.

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