Tony Doyle points out the finer details in a photo presentation Dec. 20 at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

Doyle, Sexton open peninsula eyes to nearby backcountry skiing

Four hours of work for a 15-minute thrill may not sound like a reasonable payoff, but for backcountry ski enthusiasts Tony Doyle and Trent Sexton,… Continue reading

Tony Doyle points out the finer details in a photo presentation Dec. 20 at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

An Outdoor View: Bonefishing, Part 5

Author’s note: This column is the fifth in a series about fishing at Christmas Island in 1987. — LP My initiation to bonefishing was looking… Continue reading

YCC leader Nick Longobardi looks over Skilak Lake from the Vista Trail. (Photo courtesy Kenai National Wildlife Refuge)

Refuge Notebook: Thanks to those who serve at the Refuge

Each year — and 2017 is no exception — I look back and am thankful for the many volunteers and seasonal employees without whom the… Continue reading

YCC leader Nick Longobardi looks over Skilak Lake from the Vista Trail. (Photo courtesy Kenai National Wildlife Refuge)
Matthew Pyhala, owner of the Immersion Paddling Academy, provides lessons during a Dec. 13 training session at the Skyview pool. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)

Kayakers take their paddles indoors

Kayakers used to braving frigid Alaskan waters will get a chance to train in a more leisurely environment this winter. Beginning in January, the Skyview… Continue reading

Matthew Pyhala, owner of the Immersion Paddling Academy, provides lessons during a Dec. 13 training session at the Skyview pool. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)

The life-changing magic of being bad at things

The stubborn part of me keeps thinking I’ll find something I’m a prodigy at — that the first time I try, sparks will fly. Skiing… Continue reading

The weir at the top of Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association’s Paint River fish ladder, photographed Friday, Sept. 2, 2016 near the McNeil River Game Sanctuary, Alaska, screens fish into a small opening before allowing them to pass into the upper part of the Paint River. CIAA operates the fish ladder to allow salmon to pass into the upper reaches of the remote river system to spawn. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion, file)

The mythology of salmon

What’s your salmon story? Everyone seems to have one. It might be about the day you struggled a massive chinook to the bank of the… Continue reading

The weir at the top of Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association’s Paint River fish ladder, photographed Friday, Sept. 2, 2016 near the McNeil River Game Sanctuary, Alaska, screens fish into a small opening before allowing them to pass into the upper part of the Paint River. CIAA operates the fish ladder to allow salmon to pass into the upper reaches of the remote river system to spawn. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion, file)
More than 30 percent of the Bighorn sheep population in Gardiner, Montana, died from pneumonia caused by Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae. (Photo by Deby Dixon)

Refuge Notebook: Alaska wild sheep and goats threatened by ‘Movi’

Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae isn’t a commonly used name in Alaska but this little pathogen has been a topic of considerable discussion and debate recently. First off,… Continue reading

More than 30 percent of the Bighorn sheep population in Gardiner, Montana, died from pneumonia caused by Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae. (Photo by Deby Dixon)

An Outdoor View: Bonefishing, Part 3

Author’s note: I recently came across a journal that I kept while on a trip to Christmas Island in 1987. This column, gleaned from the… Continue reading

Records of migratory birds either banded on the Kenai Peninsula and recovered elsewhere (green) or banded elsewhere and recovered on the peninsula (red). Data from USGS Bird Banding Laboratory.

Refuge Notebook: Banded birds know no borders

One of the epic moments for any waterfowl hunter is the discovery of a bird band on the leg of one of their downed ducks.… Continue reading

Records of migratory birds either banded on the Kenai Peninsula and recovered elsewhere (green) or banded elsewhere and recovered on the peninsula (red). Data from USGS Bird Banding Laboratory.

Friday night broomball ready to roll

There is good and bad news regarding the upcoming Friday night Broomball League season in Soldotna. We’ll start with the bad news, which is the… Continue reading

The Harding Icefield, named after President Warren Harding who visited the Territory of Alaska in 1923, straddles the Kenai Mountains between Kenai National Wildlife Refuge and Kenai Fjords National Park. (Photo provided by refuge)

Getting full look at shrinking Harding Icefield is worth it

There’s something as big as the island of Maui on the Kenai Peninsula that many locals have not seen or not seen well. Unless you’re… Continue reading

The Harding Icefield, named after President Warren Harding who visited the Territory of Alaska in 1923, straddles the Kenai Mountains between Kenai National Wildlife Refuge and Kenai Fjords National Park. (Photo provided by refuge)

Mapping the unknown with a new friend

I met someone recently. Their name is Strava. Although our relationship is still very new, there is a lot of excitement and electricity in the… Continue reading

An invasive northern pike removed from Stormy Lake (Nikiski) in 2011. Pike have since been eradicated there and in many other areas on the Kenai Peninsula to protect native fisheries. (Photo provided)

Refuge Notebook: Why northern pike are bad for the Kenai Peninsula

The history of northern pike in Southcentral Alaska is murky, but it goes something like this. Pike are not native to Alaska south and west… Continue reading

An invasive northern pike removed from Stormy Lake (Nikiski) in 2011. Pike have since been eradicated there and in many other areas on the Kenai Peninsula to protect native fisheries. (Photo provided)

An Outdoor View: Bonefishing, Part 2

Author’s note: I recently came across a journal that I kept while on a trip to Christmas Island in 1987. This column, gleaned from the… Continue reading

A group of Soldotna High School skiers make their way up a hill Thursday afternoon at the Tsalteshi Trails adjacent to Skyview Middle School. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

Trail etiquette: Do’s and don’t’s of using recreation facilities around town

There’s a time and place for everything, and for local recreation trails, the emphasis lies on the place. The various trails on the central peninsula… Continue reading

A group of Soldotna High School skiers make their way up a hill Thursday afternoon at the Tsalteshi Trails adjacent to Skyview Middle School. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)
This perched stream culvert clearly prevents salmon and other anadromous fish from migrating further upstream and would be color coded as red in the ADF&G Fish Resource Monitor. (Photo courtesy Kenai National Wildlife Refuge)

Refuge Notebook: Assessing stream crossings for fish passage

The habitat restoration folks in the Kenai Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office had a summer mission. The challenge posed, which we chose to accept, was… Continue reading

This perched stream culvert clearly prevents salmon and other anadromous fish from migrating further upstream and would be color coded as red in the ADF&G Fish Resource Monitor. (Photo courtesy Kenai National Wildlife Refuge)

Clear skies

We knew it would gush rain all weekend but decided to go anyway. I sliced off the top of a plastic milk jug and said… Continue reading

Members of the Kenai River Queens watch their game and wait on a line shift on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017 at Kenai Multipurpose Facility in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Kat Sorensen/Peninsula Clarion)

River Queens take the ice

Once the temperature drops, being a Kenai River Queen doesn’t mean you caught the biggest king — it means you’re on the ice. The Kenai… Continue reading

Members of the Kenai River Queens watch their game and wait on a line shift on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017 at Kenai Multipurpose Facility in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Kat Sorensen/Peninsula Clarion)
Single image mosaics were created from the hundreds of photos taken during multiple drone surveys. Distinguishing Aleutian from Arctic Terns based on bill color was possible from photos taken 50 feet above the ground. (Image courtesy Kenai National Wildlife Refuge)

Refuge Notebook: An unmanned survey of a tern colony

A small breeding colony of Arctic and Aleutian Terns nests by Headquarters Lake, a convenient 15-minute walk from the Kenai Refuge office. For several years,… Continue reading

Single image mosaics were created from the hundreds of photos taken during multiple drone surveys. Distinguishing Aleutian from Arctic Terns based on bill color was possible from photos taken 50 feet above the ground. (Image courtesy Kenai National Wildlife Refuge)

Refuge Notebook: Due dates for Kenai Refuge permits just around the corner

As I reflect on the last six months of the year, I’m appreciative of the absolute flurry of activity both recreationally and commercially here on… Continue reading