The Kenai River is one of the most famous rivers in the world, and for good reason. Some rivers have quality fish, others have quantities of fish, but the turquoise-green waters of the Kenai is blessed with both! World record King Salmon, one of the most plentiful Sockeye runs on Earth, incredible Silver Salmon fishing that lasts 4 months, and a trophy Trout fishery that is virtually unrivaled…The Kenai River is truly a gem, and is a river that every angler should be luck enough to experience firsthand. The main objective of every Kenai River fishing guide we employ is to simply represent this incredible river to you in the way it deserves to be represented, as the world class fishery that it is.
Endearingly nicknamed “the ditch” by local anglers, I can’t imagine a river being more underrated than the Kasilof. A peaceful drift boat fishery located just a few miles down the road from the Kenai, The Kasilof has never gotten the attention it deserves as one of the premiere salmon fisheries in Alaska. In fact, many anglers lucky enough to experience the potential of the Kasilof choose to come back year after year in pursuit of its early-season King Salmon run, amazing Sockeye fishing through the heart of the summer, and acrobatic Silver Salmon in the fall.
The cold, salty waters that surround the Kenai Peninsula are teaming with life! Halibut are the main attraction, along with salmon, rockfish, and lingcod seasonally. Whether you choose to fish out of Homer, Anchor Point, Ninilchik, or Seward, perhaps the greatest part about fishing the saltwater of the Kenai Peninsula is the scenery that will surround you. Volcanoes, waterfalls, whales, sea otters, bird life, and mountains that seem to shoot up directly out of the ocean are all part of the experience. Bring your camera and a fish cooler… you’ll be needing both.
Yet another benefit of calling the Kenai Peninsula home-base is the wide variety of locations that can easily be accessed with a short flight in a float plane. Part of the appeal of fly out fishing is the unbelievable angling success you’ll likely enjoy, but the true allure is all about the flight, the wildlife, and the breathtaking scenery you’ll be able to experience. You can think of a fly out trip as a combination flight seeing/bear viewing/fishing trip all in one!
The mighty King Salmon is the fish that put the Kenai on the map. It’s a salmon unlike any other… big, wild, and powerful! The Kenai has produced the vast majority of the largest King Salmon ever caught, including the monster 97 lb. 4 oz. World Record! Kenai Kings are uniquely large due to their genetic make-up, prompting a certain percentage of them to return after 5+ more years feeding in the ocean, and when they return to their natal river, they arrive as GIANTS! We believe it’s important to preserve these unique and special fish, and therefore require all our guests, along with their Kenai River fishing guide, to release all wild King Salmon back to the river. It’s a glorious feeling as an angler to send such a special fish on its way to spawn, and an accomplishment that belongs on every angler’s bucket list. (May-July 31)
The favorite time of the year for every local and Kenai River fishing guide is without a doubt the fall. Why do we love the fall so much? Silver Salmon! The great thing about silvers is… everything. They are plentiful, tasty, aggressive, you can catch them a variety of ways, and they are insane fighters! And perhaps the best thing about Silvers is the length of the run. We catch chrome silvers 5 different months of the year! (July-November)
While pictures of massive King Salmon steal most of the headlines, Sockeye salmon provide the vast majority of the action during much of the Alaskan summer. Sockeye are possibly the best eating fish in the world, and with runs in the millions, Sockeye are truly the perfect “freezer fish.” But not only are they great eating, they’re a blast to fish for with their blazing runs, aerial gymnastics, and bruising power. Sockeye fishing definitely puts our gear to the test! Some choose to do some sockeye fishing on their own, but when you travel with a Kenai River fishing guide, you will be given the best gear, fish the best spots, be given the best tips, and likely catch the most fish! (June 15-Aug 10)
Many think of the Kenai River as a salmon river, and it certainly is, but it’s the massive runs of salmon that feeds a world-class Rainbow Trout fishery like no other! Fishing for Kenai River Trout is something every angler should be lucky enough to experience, and every Kenai River fishing guide surely enjoys sharing with its visitors. Some rivers have large trout, some have lots of trout… the Kenai has both! From the opening of Trout season on June 11th until the extreme late fall into October and November, fishing with a Kenai River fishing guide gives you an opportunity to do battle with the biggest & baddest trout you’ve ever seen. (June 11-November)
Dollies are the species that get talked about the least by a Kenai River fishing guide prior to most Kenai River fishing trips, but these plentiful fish often provide much of the action, and certainly provide the most gorgeous pictures. A member of the Char family, Dolly Varden come in a variety of brilliant pink and orange colors, and are very fisherman-friendly with an aggressive instinct being eager to strike out at almost any lure or fly. Dollies range from 6-30 inches, can be caught year-round, and provide yet another reason to bring your camera on board. (June 11-November)
Need some fish for the freezer? Halibut may be just what you’re looking for. This white-meat fish is as good as it gets for table fare, and just about as close to a guarantee as you can get when it comes to fishing. Not to mention, you’ll be fishing in possibly the most beautiful place in the world, surrounded by mountains and wildlife. Whether you choose to fish in Cook Inlet or Prince William Sound, if you want to take a break from your Kenai River fishing guide trips, a short drive will get you into some of the most productive waters on Earth!
Mark Wackler established Fishology Alaska after growing up in Soldotna, Alaska on the Kenai River. Being a long-term local means that Mark has special knowledge of all the Kenai Peninsula lodges, guides, services, and their owners & staff. Anyone who has booked through Fishology knows that this intimate knowledge is invaluable when setting guests up with their Kenai River fishing guide and lodging vacations. “I got my first boat when I was 15 years old, and I just started fishing and experimenting on the local rivers, learning a lot and having a blast in the process. When I turned 17 I decided to become a Kenai River fishing guide, and I continued guiding every summer through college as I obtained my Bachelor’s degree in Fisheries Sciences and Master’s degree in Science Education. A summer-time job that was supposed to get me through college turned into a seasonal career, small business, and a life-long passion! I now raise my own family (3 great kids) along with my amazing wife in Soldotna, and hope someday my children can realize just how special the place they live is, just as I did many years ago.” Fishology now employs additional Kenai River fishing guides, all who share the same passion for fishing, having fun on the water, and helping our guests realize the true potential of the Kenai.
180 Sierra Heights St