Kenai peninsula, Alaska, July 2007
A report from Eric for
Eric flew to Alaska for a week of fishing with his father in-law and brother in-law on the Kenai River on the Kenai peninsula, Alaska. They mainly fished around Bing's Landing and Swiftwater in Soldotna. Action was good and they all got into some nice fish. He even caught a salmon on a fly I tied for him. Must've been the only blind fish in the school.

The Kenai River is a located in the Kenai peninsula in south central Alaska. It runs for 82 miles westward and empties into Cook Inlet in the Pacific Ocean near Kenai, Alaska.

The river is the most popular sport fishing destination in Alaska, featuring two yearly runs of King, Silver and Red salmon, plus a run of Pink salmon every other year. The King salmon fishery is not as prolific as in other Alaskan rivers, but the Kenai River is known for its large fish.

A typical King in the second run, beginning in mid-July, weighs 40–50 pounds or larger. The lower Kenai is known for its run and size of its King salmon. The world record King was caught in Soldotna in 1985 by resident fisherman Les Anderson. This fish topped the scale at 97 pounds 4 ounces and was caught downstream from the Soldotna Visitor Information Center (where the mounted salmon is displayed) on Sterling Highway.

Silver salmon runs occur in early August and late September. The September run is favored by most anglers due to the larger size of the salmon.
The Red salmon runs are from mid-June to mid-July. Reds are considered the premier salmon for eating, canning, and smoking.

Besides salmon, the Kenai River is known for its diverse wildlife, which includes moose, bears, and a wide variety of birds.

EQUIPMENT: Heavy spinning outfits with 15-25 lb. test for silver and King salmon. Spinners and lures in a variety of shapes, colors, and sizes. Use heavy hooks!

DIRECTIONS: To Soldotna and Swiftwater -- take the Sterling Highway south toward Homer, Alaska. Soldotna is almost a three hour drive from the Anchorage airport and is located at the junction of Sterling Highway and the Kenai Spur Highway. It is about 150 miles from Anchorage to Soldotna. To reach Swiftwater, turn south on East Redoubt Avenue just a half mile east of the Sterling Highway intersection between Holiday and Great Bear Ford. Bing's Landing is located at mile 79 on the Sterling Highway.