King (Chinook) Salmon
By: Paul Mrocza
|Nine of the ten record
setting King (Chinook) Salmon were caught in Alaskaís Kenai River. The
average size of Kings in Alaska is 20 pounds, but typically the Kenai
yields 50-pound Kings. King Salmon spend 2 to 5 years in the ocean
before they come back to spawn. Thus, the size of these fish can vary
quite a bit. The largest King caught on the Kenai weighed 97.25 pounds.
What makes the Kenai such a popular spot for fishing fanatics? There are certainly other rivers in Alaska that host greater numbers of salmon. (This isnít to say that the number of salmon in the river is small. Thereís plenty to go around for all wanting to have a great day, week, or month fishing.)
|This river draws fishermen for three primary
reasonsósize of the Kings, abundance of varieties of salmon, and the number
of runs for each type. Along with the King, the Kenai is stocked with
Sockeye (Red) Salmon and Coho (Silver) Salmon, with each of the species
having two runs between May and October. And then thereís the size of the
Kings. If you want the best chance of landing a trophy Chinook Salmon, the
Kenai River is the place to be.
Itís a short jaunt from Anchorage to the 80-mile long Kenai. The first time you see the river, you may simply be stunned. With striking sapphire waters created by glacial melt, the river is simply breathtaking. Conservation measures have been instituted to preserve the natural beauty and nurturing environment of the river for residents and visitors.
During fishing season, the Kenai supports thousands upon thousands of salmon, making it relatively easy for many fishermen, especially those working with licensed guides, to catch their limit. Additionally, the river is home for world-class rainbow trout, which are the envy of anglers everywhere.
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|The Kenai is divided into three sections. The
upper part is 30-miles long, flowing from Kenai Lake located on Cooper
Landing and going to Skilak Lake. Rafters, drift boaters and other
recreational and sport enthusiasts have easy access to the river at Cooper
The upper part of the Kenai flows down to and ends at the Russian River, a tributary that plays host to thousands of Sockeye Salmon. Just down river from this tributary is the Kenai River Ferry, which transports thousands of fishermen to the riverís far bank. This section is popular with anglers and itís often packed.
Going down river, youíll find many miles of beautiful views, natural settings, and bountiful fishing. In this stretch between the Russian River and Jimís landing, despite the fact that itís bordered by the busy Sterling Highway, you will experience isolation and peace due to the natural buffer created by trees and thick vegetation.
The Kenai River meets Skilak Lake, forming the middle part of the river, which goes to Soldotna Bridge. If youíre looking for wildlife and true isolation, this section is for you. With a ten-mile stretch that has no boat access and a variety of animals, including moose, bear, and waterfowl, the Kenai embraces the wild. To get to some prime fishing, youíll need a boat; however, some parts of the middle river can get too low to navigate. Throughout the summer, the Kenai rises, allowing boats easier passage.
In this remote section youíll find some of the best trout
and Silver Salmon fishing on the river. Unlike the upper and lower parts of
the Kenai, this section has fewer sportsmen, guides, and visitors on it.
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About the author: This article was written by Paul Mroczka sponsored by http://www.alaskafishon.com/. Alaska Fish On is a licensed and registered Kenai river fishing guide service providing affordable packages for the novice or experienced fisher. Reproductions of this article are encouraged but must include a link pointing back to http://www.alaskafishon.com/.
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