April 2024: Spring Fishing Fever on the Kenai Peninsula

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As the snow begins to melt and the first signs of spring whisper through the towering pines and along the rushing rivers of the Kenai Peninsula, April ushers in an unparalleled sense of anticipation among the fishing community. The Kenai Peninsula, renowned for its majestic landscapes and rich waters, becomes a beacon for anglers eager to cast their lines into the thawing waters. Let’s dive into what makes April 2024 a particularly special month for fishing enthusiasts looking to explore the bountiful offerings of Kenai.

The Awakening Waters: Rainbow Trout and Dolly Varden

April on the Kenai Peninsula is a time of awakening, not just for the flora and fauna but also for the vibrant aquatic life beneath the icy rivers. As the Kenai and Kasilof Rivers break free from winter’s grasp, the cold, clear waters become a playground for Rainbow Trout and Dolly Varden. These species, rejuvenated by the influx of fresh water and nutrients, begin their active feeding, making April an ideal month for anglers targeting these spirited fish.

  • Rainbow Trout: Known for their striking colors and spirited fight, Rainbow Trout are eager to chase down a well-presented fly or lure. Anglers can expect to find them in slower-moving pools and eddies, where they feed on salmon eggs, small fish, and aquatic insects stirred up by the melting snow.
  • Dolly Varden: These char are a delight for fly fishermen and women, with their aggressive feeding habits and penchant for brightly colored flies. As they prepare for their spawning season later in the year, Dolly Varden can be found in abundance, providing exciting catch-and-release opportunities.

Preparing for Your April Fishing Adventure

  • Gear Up: While April can be milder, the Alaskan weather remains unpredictable. Waterproof and layered clothing will ensure comfort during your fishing excursions. Additionally, having the right gear, including medium-action rods and a variety of flies and lures, can make all the difference in attracting those early-season bites.
  • Hire a Guide: For those unfamiliar with the Kenai Peninsula’s diverse waters or looking to maximize their fishing potential, hiring a local guide can be invaluable. Kenai Fly Fish offers expert-guided trips that cater to all skill levels, providing not only the chance to land impressive catches but also to learn about the area’s unique ecosystem and conservation efforts.
  • Conservation Awareness: The Kenai Peninsula is a pristine natural environment, home to a diverse range of wildlife. Practicing catch-and-release, especially with species like Steelhead and Dolly Varden, contributes to the sustainability of these precious fisheries. Always adhere to local regulations and guidelines to ensure the health and future of these fish populations.

The Call of the Kenai

As the days lengthen and the ice recedes, April on the Kenai Peninsula is a call to anglers far and wide. It’s an invitation to shake off the winter chill and embrace the promise of spring, with its burgeoning fishing opportunities and the beauty of Alaska’s wilderness. Whether you’re a seasoned fly fisher or someone looking to cast your first line, the Kenai Peninsula in April 2024 is where your fishing dreams can come true. Join us at Kenai Fly Fish, and let’s create unforgettable memories on the water together.


Kenai River Fish Species

Rainbow Trout

Kenai River rainbows can be well over 30 inches and up to 20lbs!

Dolly Varden Char

Dollies range of all sizes and can reach up to about 12 lbs.


Steelhead are very uniform in shape and average around 28 inches. These amazing, acrobatic fish are often a fly fisherman’s favorite to target.

King Salmon

The Kenai River is open to motorized boats, allowing us chase the bite, and stay on the fish!

Sockeye Salmon

Sockeye salmon (also called red salmon) are the most popular salmon to catch on the Kenai Peninsula.

Coho Salmon

Ranging anywhere from 5-20lbs, coho are acrobatic and are probably the most aggressive salmon out there.

Pink Salmon

Pinks are completely underrated, they are extremely aggressive to catch and come in by the millions!


Guided ocean fishing on the world-famous Kenai Peninsula