Gentoo penguin contributing nutrients to Cuverville Island. (Photo provided by Sue Mauger)

Polar Connections: Penguins and Salmon Transform Emerging Landscapes

As we stepped out of zodiacs and landed on Pleneau Island off the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, we saw green. In an environment… Continue reading

Gentoo penguin contributing nutrients to Cuverville Island. (Photo provided by Sue Mauger)
Smoked salmon strips hang in a smoke shed during a demonstration July 20, 2018, at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

Fish Week teaches how to smoke delicious salmon

Smoking salmon may not be as time-consuming as one may think. Yes, it does pay to allow a lot of time to let the meat… Continue reading

Smoked salmon strips hang in a smoke shed during a demonstration July 20, 2018, at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)
Personal-use dipnet fishermen pull up to the bank of the Kenai River beneath the Warren Ames Bridge on Saturday, July 21, 2018 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion)

78-pound king caught on Kenai; sockeye fishing up and down

Despite its nickname as the Land of the Midnight Sun, there are in fact hours of darkness on the Kenai Peninsula in July. But the… Continue reading

Personal-use dipnet fishermen pull up to the bank of the Kenai River beneath the Warren Ames Bridge on Saturday, July 21, 2018 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion)

Tangled Up in Blue: Mouse Traps

I got lazy last week. It was the middle of July and things in Seward got a little hectic. The weather was warm, the town… Continue reading

Melissa Garcia Johnson separates foraged wildflowers at a beach on North Douglas Highway. (Photo by Kevin Gullufsen/Juneau Empire)
Melissa Garcia Johnson separates foraged wildflowers at a beach on North Douglas Highway. (Photo by Kevin Gullufsen/Juneau Empire)
Kenai National Wildlife Refuge interns Angel Smith and Laura Bashor help Hilcorp Alaska restore a retired gas pad east of the Swanson River Oil Field. (Photo by Lorene Lynn)

Restoring nature 1 gravel pad at a time

What happens to old oil and gas pads when they are no longer useful? This June, I was given the opportunity to find out. As… Continue reading

Kenai National Wildlife Refuge interns Angel Smith and Laura Bashor help Hilcorp Alaska restore a retired gas pad east of the Swanson River Oil Field. (Photo by Lorene Lynn)
Tasi Fosi of Anchorage, who has been dipnetting in Chitina since 1991, holds up two king salmon on July 9, 2018 as seagulls hover overhead. (Photo courtesy Mary Catharine Martin)

Low Copper River sockeye return effects ripple outward

It’s a summer tradition for many in Alaska: pack up the car, drive to Chitina and dipnet for Copper River red salmon. It’s a tradition,… Continue reading

Tasi Fosi of Anchorage, who has been dipnetting in Chitina since 1991, holds up two king salmon on July 9, 2018 as seagulls hover overhead. (Photo courtesy Mary Catharine Martin)
An angler casts her line into the Kenai River near Soldotna Creek Park on Wednesday, July 18, 2018 in Soldotna, Alaska. The water in the Kenai River is a little higher than usual — about 9.71 feet, according to U.S. Geological Survey’s gauge at Soldotna — but has fallen since last week and is significantly below the flood stage of 12 feet. Anglers were hitting the banks on Wednesday morning for sockeye salmon, which normally peak in returning numbers to the Kenai River in mid-July. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion)

Sockeye fishing remains slow on Kenai, counts pick up on Kasilof

Anglers are hitting the banks of the Kenai River in more serious numbers now, though the sockeye have yet to show up in real force.… Continue reading

An angler casts her line into the Kenai River near Soldotna Creek Park on Wednesday, July 18, 2018 in Soldotna, Alaska. The water in the Kenai River is a little higher than usual — about 9.71 feet, according to U.S. Geological Survey’s gauge at Soldotna — but has fallen since last week and is significantly below the flood stage of 12 feet. Anglers were hitting the banks on Wednesday morning for sockeye salmon, which normally peak in returning numbers to the Kenai River in mid-July. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion)
The author stumbles at the rock marking the race point on the Mount Marathon Race trail during one of her many training runs in preparation for the July 4, 2018, race. (Photo provided by Kat Sorensen)

Tangled Up in Blue: Making friends is hard to do

In my first week of college, I opened my front door and saw Camille to the right. She was splayed across the concrete floor of… Continue reading

The author stumbles at the rock marking the race point on the Mount Marathon Race trail during one of her many training runs in preparation for the July 4, 2018, race. (Photo provided by Kat Sorensen)
Bright orange spores are released from rupturing needles of a spruce tip infected with spruce tip rust on the Skyline Trail on July 5, 2018. (Photo provided by Matt Bowser of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

A big year for spruce tip rust

“What is that?” asked my co-worker, pointing down to where it looked like someone had marked the ground beside the Skyline Trail with neon orange… Continue reading

Bright orange spores are released from rupturing needles of a spruce tip infected with spruce tip rust on the Skyline Trail on July 5, 2018. (Photo provided by Matt Bowser of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)
Sean Carlson shows off the 50-inch king salmon he caught on the Kenai River. (Photo courtesy Scott Miller)

Kenai dipnet opens slow

The fishermen on the beach for the opening day of the Kenai River personal-use dipnet Tuesday got the benefit of a relatively uncrowded beach. However,… Continue reading

Sean Carlson shows off the 50-inch king salmon he caught on the Kenai River. (Photo courtesy Scott Miller)

Kenai dipnet opens slow

The fishermen on the beach for the opening day of the Kenai River personal-use dipnet Tuesday got the benefit of a relatively uncrowded beach. However,… Continue reading

Dipnetters carry their dipnets to the water at Kenai Beach on Tuesday, July 10, 2018 in Kenai, Alaska. Tuesday marked the opening of the three-week dipnetting season, during which Alaska residents can harvest salmon and flounder for personal use. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)
Dipnetters carry their dipnets to the water at Kenai Beach on Tuesday, July 10, 2018 in Kenai, Alaska. Tuesday marked the opening of the three-week dipnetting season, during which Alaska residents can harvest salmon and flounder for personal use. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)

Refuge Notebook: Our national bird more than meets the eye

If you have not checked out the city of Kenai Eagle Cam you are missing out. This is among the best in the world of… Continue reading

As part of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge’s July cultural heritage series, Sam Schimmel demonstrates how to cut ivory on Friday, July 6, at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center, near Soldotna, Alaska. Schimmel used the chunk of ivory to carve a small owl figurine. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Kenai National Wildlife Refuge hosts cultural heritage workshops

Traditional beadwork, storytelling, fish processing and a tutorial on how to harvest local plants are just some of the cultural heritage workshops the Kenai National… Continue reading

As part of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge’s July cultural heritage series, Sam Schimmel demonstrates how to cut ivory on Friday, July 6, at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center, near Soldotna, Alaska. Schimmel used the chunk of ivory to carve a small owl figurine. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Floating the Kenai

Honestly, what’s left to say about the Kenai River? A commenter at a recent Kenai Planning and Zoning meeting called it “this body of water… Continue reading

Take a Hike is great way to take a hike

What’s a great way to commune with nature in a big group that provides safety from bears, collective knowledge on plants and animals, socializing and… Continue reading

Our national bird more than meets the eye

If you have not checked out the city of Kenai Eagle Cam you are missing out. This is among the best in the world of… Continue reading

Bill Farrell, a volunteer host at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center, tells a group about the refuge’s history during Take a Hike at the top of the Bear Mountain trail Friday, June 29, 2018. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Take a Hike is great way to take a hike

What’s a great way to commune with nature in a big group that provides safety from bears, collective knowledge on plants and animals, socializing and… Continue reading

Bill Farrell, a volunteer host at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center, tells a group about the refuge’s history during Take a Hike at the top of the Bear Mountain trail Friday, June 29, 2018. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

App aims to be central fish information location

Whatever anglers want to know about fishing in Alaska, Jim Voss wants them to find it via smartphone app. This summer, he launched the app… Continue reading