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Thread: Saltwater kings and silvers in cook inlet

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    Default Saltwater kings and silvers in cook inlet

    I am currently looking to purchase a property within the kenai region. I was curious to know whether there is a saltwater fishery available to possibly tackle feeder kings or silvers?. I am looking to purchase a Willie predator ( 21 ft to meet the regulations on the kenai ). Is this boat suitable for some light saltwater bay fishing around kenai region? Thanks very much.

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    salt water fishing is better down the road farther than around Kenai Deep creek to Anchor river is the best for salt kings an the anchor an out is the best for feeder KINGS all year but a 21 FT is kind of small for the feeder king fishing [ weather is the big thing on feeder king fishing RUFF ]
    SID

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    Thanks Sid. What about the silvers? can they be caught in the salt to around anchor point too?

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    Silvers can be caught but you need to go further out than you maybe willing to go in your boat. In the summer you should have no problem with the kings and if your doing it in the winter just pick your days and your weather gear as it will be cold.

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    Should be able to pick up silvers around the mouths of the smaller rivers like deep Creek, Anchor, Starriski.

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    The Kenai is a zoo! I have lived in Homer for the last 10 years and would not even think of taking people I don't like to fish the Kenai for any salmon. Get a boat that you can fish the salt for kings and silvers and you will have much more fun. If you have any questions PM me. Good fishing to you.

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    I have heard unconfirmed reports that during the king season there could be up too 100 boats on the lower river with up to 4 fishermen in each one. Is that accurate or is there more or less?................Sounds like a zoo if it is !!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Micky_Ireland View Post
    I have heard unconfirmed reports that during the king season there could be up too 100 boats on the lower river with up to 4 fishermen in each one. Is that accurate or is there more or less?................
    Usually more. Not so many lately due to low run numbers and fishing restrictions.
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    Having lived here all my life and not owning a dedicated Kenai boat should tell you something...the middle and lower river are ridiculous. Get a bay worthy boat and fish the salt water. You could pick up a smaller skiff for interior lakes and rivers and live a happy life.


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    Thanks AK. I think the saltwater would be out of this world. What sort of boat manufacturer would you recommend . I assume we are talking something in the 30ft plus class. I have heard that the coast all the around the kenai peninsula is fantastic for all sorts of species.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Micky_Ireland View Post
    Thanks AK. I think the saltwater would be out of this world. What sort of boat manufacturer would you recommend . I assume we are talking something in the 30ft plus class. I have heard that the coast all the around the kenai peninsula is fantastic for all sorts of species.
    I would say in salt water your budget has the most to do with what you get. I fish in boats from 18'-58' and several in between. I have always thought that if someone wanted to go out and stay out with a couple friends boats like the 27' Seasport Pilothouse would be a great option. Lots of people run aluminums in the 22'-33' range and do just fine. Fiberglass will ride better but aluminum can get you to shore sometimes without damage. Depending on your skills and boat type smaller boats can work but will leave you on shore some days when others out in their slightly larger boats. Budget has the most to do with it IMO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AK2AZ View Post
    Having lived here all my life and not owning a dedicated Kenai boat should tell you something...the middle and lower river are ridiculous. Get a bay worthy boat and fish the salt water. You could pick up a smaller skiff for interior lakes and rivers and live a happy life.

    Haven't lived here nearly that long, but concur that I would hate to be limited with a Kenai complient boat and given all the fishing opportunities in SC, I've never really understood the allure of the Kenai. Give me an ocean boat for K-bay, R-bay and PWS and a canoe to hit the lakes in the Kenai Peninsula for freshwater species and getting away from the hoards

    As far as suitable saltwater boats, it depends on your use and budget. If you're mostly taking day trips, then a smaller faster boat is very appealing as you can cover alot of ground to get into good fishing. If you're looking at mostly multi day to week long voyages, then a larger slower craft comes into it's own.

    I think a hewescraft ocean pro 22 or similar is a good minimum size boat good for day trips to a few nights on the water. As far as used boats, the well apointed and well maintained ones that seem to be the most expensive in their class are almost always the most reliable and least expensive in the long run. Those advertised as fixer uppers almost always end up being more expensive after a major repair or two than the well apointed boats.
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    Thanks Paul. Sound advice. My reason for choosing somewhere on the kenai is basically just to be sort of central to all that the kenai has to offer. , Ive fished fresh water all over Alaska and the world for that matter but it only the other week when a colleague of mine mentioned that the saltwater fishing in cook inlet and surrounding waters were simply world class. It got me thinking that maybe I have been missing something. it looks very much that I have. My thinking was that if I base myself around the kenai , ninilchik region I could possibly have the best of both worlds.. What do you think?

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    If my day job wasn't in Anchorage, I'd certainly live closer to the fishing grounds.

    That said I'd probably go for Southeast as the fishing is even better, and you don't have the majority of states population driving down to fish on the weekends.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

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    Micky.......One thing I wanted to mention that hasn't been said yet about considering the size boat you want is this..... If you have already resigned yourself to a big boat, meaning a big HEAVY boat, then be advised that if you do, you will be restricted to either using a harbor, the tractors on the beach, or waiting for high tide to get into the rivers like Deep Creek, or the Anchor. You can not launch a boat and make it out to the sea at low tide in these rivers. Don't get me wrong, I would love to have a big boat, it would be great. But I've never been than fond of relying on what I just mentioned. I have an 18' Bayrunner and with a 4wd vehicle I can launch on and off the beach at any time I choose. If I'm out in the salt and the weather starts to turn, I don't have to wait for high tide before I can trailer my boat again. I don't have to use a harbor, and I don't need the assistance of a tractor.

    I know that many folks don't like the idea of having a vehicle out on the beach....and I understand that. It can be risky if you don't know what you are doing. But after living here 30 years now. That's the way I've always done it. Indeed you do have to pick your days, and you can't go out when it's real choppy. But it's really not that fun to go out when it's like that even in a big boat. I've just always liked the convenience of having a smaller, but not too small of a boat.

    Last spring I got into heavier seas on Tustumena Lake, than I ever did in the inlet. Even though it wasn't fun, the 18'er handled it well and we got home safe.

    PS.....I just remembered you're looking at buying property on the Kenai River. In that case then you're probably doing pretty good for yourself and wouldn't mind the coast of having a slip in the harbor, or paying for the tractors each time you want to launch out of Deep Creek. In that case what I've said above is probably moot. If you can afford buying, and using a big boat, then by all means, do it, and go have fun...!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    If my day job wasn't in Anchorage, I'd certainly live closer to the fishing grounds.

    That said I'd probably go for Southeast as the fishing is even better, and you don't have the majority of states population driving down to fish on the weekends.
    Ditto what Paul said. If fishing were what I was after, southeast would get the nod.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Micky_Ireland View Post
    Thanks Paul. Sound advice. My reason for choosing somewhere on the kenai is basically just to be sort of central to all that the kenai has to offer. , Ive fished fresh water all over Alaska and the world for that matter but it only the other week when a colleague of mine mentioned that the saltwater fishing in cook inlet and surrounding waters were simply world class. It got me thinking that maybe I have been missing something. it looks very much that I have. My thinking was that if I base myself around the kenai , ninilchik region I could possibly have the best of both worlds.. What do you think?
    Yes, a great area but not what I would call world class anymore unless you plan on multiday trips that take you out of the charters range. It used to be world class, the king runs on all the rivers have been devastated, the saltwater kings get hammered and exploited year round, the average sport caught halibut gets smaller each year and is now around 18lbs. There are way to many charters in the area and the larger sized Halibut get fewer each year, the lings have gotten pounded also to the point close in areas have been fished out and guides are now traveling clear past Gore pt for them. Just a little reality check.

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    Really AK , any pictures?

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    Thanks 4merguide. Another detailed and educated answer. Thanks. Id never really thought about that. What is the realistic cost of leasing a slip at the harbour ( im assuming were talking about homer here ). Look , im just trying to get the best information as I can...Id never actually thought about a larger boat for the saltwater but it would be definitely something ill look in to now. I wouldn't be on the salt every day of the week, maybe 1 day or 2 days per week during the summer. I cant ever see myself being a long range man , probably just fish the bays around cook inlet or otherwise ( although im thinking about the barn door halibut just as I write this, who knows ?) Do I need a license of some description to fish the salt or to operate a vessel on it? Thanks also to Brian ,Redleader, and paul for all your input. INVALUABLE

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