I had big plans this week to fish the Kenai/Russian River confluence and the beaches of Seward for red salmon. After seeing no action in either areas, I decided to focus on camping/hiking, and then fish when I returned home. I’m not sure fishing was better on the lower Kenai River, but at least I caught enough for a couple of barbecue dinners.
One of the early June fishing draws to Seward is a run of red salmon. The two most popular areas to snag fish are on the Nash Road, and at the Seward Lagoon Creek near the boat harbor (pictured above). I saw enough fisherman working the incoming tide without success that my fishing gear remained dry.
How’s that for fishing gear? I wasn’t joking when I said snag red salmon. In the saltwaters of Alaska, snagging is legal. The one and only weapon of choice is an 8/0 treble hook with 1 oz of lead attached to the shank. The technique is simple: cast the treble hook out as far as you can, and then reel and rip as fast as you can. It’s very effective as long as there’s fish.
Since fishing was plan A, we quickly adapted to plan B, which was camping and hiking. We always like to explore new areas of Alaska, and decided to stop and stay at the Trail River Campground at mile 24 of the Seward Highway. We’ve driven by this place countless times on our way to Seward. With gorgeous views, and scenic hiking trails, it will now become a regular stop.
Everything I just said about Trail River Campground applies to where we spent our next night, Ptarmigan Creek Campground. This small, peaceful campground is located at mile 23 of the Seward Highway. I would really like to return to this spot in August. There is a viewing platform where you can watch spawning red salmon navigate the crystal clear waters of Ptarmigan Creek.
Anybody know what type of flowering plant this is? I took this photo while hiking Ptarmigan Creek trail. I asked my sister if she knew what it was. She checked with a phenologist friend who said it was columbine. I will take his word for it, unless someone else tells me differently.
For the week ahead I plan on following the red salmon weir count at the Russian River, and if the numbers improve, I’ll make a run there. I also have plans to fish the saltwater this week (weather permitting). The reports out of Homer have been very good for halibut, rockfish, and salmon. I can’t wait to see for myself.
See you next week.