Kings may be slow, but other fishing options abound

Early run king catches have been slow on the southern Kenai Peninsula’s streams. The late spring and high, murky waters are to blame, said Carol Kerkvliet, assistant Homer area management biologist for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.


But fishing is good elsewhere. Fishermen are catching fish in Cook Inlet and lakes. Also, several kings have been caught in the Kenai and Kasilof rivers, according to Fish and Game’s fishing report.

“Out in the salt, people are having good luck fishing for kings out in Anchor Point and Deep Creek,” Kerkvliet said. They are also catching halibut, she said.

Fishermen say caught halibut are not mushy like they were last year, she said. “So that’s great,” she said. Mushiness is a sign of nutritional deficiency, she said.

Lake fishing in the Soldotna and Kenai areas has been successful, according to Fish and Game’s report. Fishermen are catching rainbow trout, lake trout and Dolly Varden with bait rigged under a bobber.

Dawn Nushart, fishing counter supervisor for Trustworthy Hardware & Fishing, said fishermen have had success with spinners, single eggs and shrimp on lakes and ponds.

Smaller ponds are ice free, she said, and likely most lakes.

“Gosh, we’ve had such warm weather,” she said. “Probably all of them are open up, really.”

Kerkvliet said there has been some luck fishing for kings in Homer’s Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon.

“There have been a few kings taken out of the fishing hole out on the Spit,” she said. The fishing hole is stocked with kings and coho salmon.

The first Youth Fishing Day at the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon is Saturday. A portion of the Fishing Lagoon will be open to youth 15 years of age or younger from 12:01 a.m. until midnight. Department staff will be present from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. to help young anglers fish and tie egg loops and fishing knots.

Kerkvliet expects the Anchor River and Deep Creek will continue to yield poor king catches into this weekend’s opening. But the Ninilchik River, which typically lowers and clears quicker, may be better for king fishing this weekend, she said.

As always, anglers should be sure to check the regulations for the area they’ll be fishing before heading out.


Dan Schwartz can be reached at