2024 Kenai River Fishing Update: New Policies & Opportunities

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King Salmon Fishing

As the 2024 fishing season on the Kenai River draws near, it’s crucial for the angling community, especially those planning adventures with Kenai Fly Fish, to be aware of the recent shifts in management policies affecting Kenai River king salmon. These changes, introduced by the Alaska Board of Fisheries, aim to enhance conservation efforts for king salmon while offering anglers increased opportunities for sockeye salmon fishing, ensuring a balanced approach to sustaining the river’s fish populations.

Understanding the Changes:

  • Sockeye Salmon Bag Limits Increased: A significant update beneficial to anglers is the doubling of the sockeye salmon bag limits within the Kenai River. This adjustment promises a richer fishing experience, allowing anglers to enjoy the abundance of sockeye salmon that the Kenai is famous for.
  • Commercial Setnet Fishing Adjustments: In a move to prioritize king salmon conservation, commercial setnet fishing faces a potential indefinite closure. This decision is primarily focused on minimizing the incidental catch of king salmon, a measure that underscores a broader commitment to preserving fish populations for future generations.
  • King Salmon Conservation Focus: With the official designation of Kenai River late-run king salmon as a stock of concern, a revamped management plan introduces several conservation strategies. These include bait restrictions for in-river fisheries and setting a new threshold for commercial fishing opportunities, based on king salmon population projections.

Impact on Your Fishing Experience:

  • Diverse Fishing Opportunities Remain: Despite the increased regulation on king salmon, the enhanced sockeye limits and Kenai Fly Fish’s dedication to responsible fishing practices mean that diverse and fulfilling fishing experiences await on the Kenai River.
  • Commitment to Sustainability: These policy updates align with our longstanding commitment to sustainable fishing. By adapting to these changes, we’re not only adhering to regulations but also contributing to the health and longevity of the Kenai’s fish populations.
  • Unchanged Adventure Spirit: The essential elements that make fishing in Alaska a unique and exhilarating experience—the stunning scenery, the thrill of the catch, and the unparalleled river environment—remain untouched. Kenai Fly Fish is here to guide you through these changes, ensuring your fishing adventure is as memorable as ever.

Exploring Beyond Fishing: The Kenai Peninsula, set against Alaska’s majestic summer backdrop, offers more than just exceptional fishing. From witnessing vibrant wildlife to exploring glaciers and enjoying the long Alaskan daylight, the area presents a wealth of activities that complement your fishing trip, enriching your overall Alaskan adventure.

As we navigate through these new management policies, Kenai Fly Fish’s priority remains to offer you unforgettable and sustainable fishing experiences. We’re excited to welcome you to the Kenai River, ready to embark on fishing adventures that are respectful of our natural resources and aligned with conservation efforts.

For any questions or to discuss how these updates might affect your planned fishing trips, please reach out. Let’s continue to embrace the spirit of Alaskan fishing with a conscientious approach to preserving the beauty and bounty of the Kenai River for years to come.


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