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Thread: Hooligan Kenai River

  1. #1

    Default Hooligan Kenai River

    I was wondering if anyone knows how to go about dipnetting for hooligan in the Kenai. I live up on the bluff so I'm able to walk down the to the beach on the north shore, but I'm not sure that I can get them there. I know they run up the Kenai, but I'm just not sure when or where.

  2. #2
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    They do run up the Kenai and in good numbers most years.
    First I would determine how many I needed and how much I wanted to invest in getting them.
    For fishing them at the river mouth area or say cunningham park a big net is the norm and works best.Especially early in the season like right now This is a 10'-20' long gillnet.
    I made mine using 1"pvc with a big yellow seine float on the end and some smaller leadline on the bottom. Traditionally they used bamboo poles and many people still run those nets.
    You will need someone to hang it for you if you do not know how to hang one. The parts can be had at the Gear Shed in Homer or Possibly Donalsons in Kenai. Last year Donalsons did not have the supplies when I was looking there.
    The other option which is easier and cheaper is to get a small scoop type net. These can be bought at most places that sell sporting goods.
    I usually use mine at places like Soldotna creek park in Soldotna. When they are running hard a couple of scoops may fill a 5 gallon bucket.
    This works especially good later in the season closer to June and even after June 1st until the closure June 15th.
    If you use the search feature here you will likely find more info on this fishery.
    Remember this is a personal use fishery and non residents may not net them.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

  3. #3

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    Thanks kasilofchrisn. That info really helps. I am a resident, just new to Kenai. Used to live in Anchorage; I should probably see about changing my handle.

    I appreciate the help. Any advice on herring or is that a boat thing?

  4. #4
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by new2town View Post
    Thanks kasilofchrisn. That info really helps. I am a resident, just new to Kenai. Used to live in Anchorage; I should probably see about changing my handle.

    I appreciate the help. Any advice on herring or is that a boat thing?
    They get them in Whittier from shore in the summer and Seward as well though Seward is all about timing as they come in during the spring for a short while.
    Usually they are caught using Sabiki rigs.
    I had a gillnet made up for Herring but have never really used it yet. The herring gillnet would be from a boat most likely.
    I have caught a herring or two in my hooligan net along with the hooligan from the Kenai city beach. I guess they just got lost?
    There are a few local setnetters who get some Herring and sell it but I have never bought any that way.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

  5. #5
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    new2town,

    You received some great information from kasilofchrisn; usually target the hooligan in mid-May in the tidal section of the Kenai, moving upstream as the run progresses. First ten days of June in the Soldotna area can be phenomenal, like last year, with fish hugging the shoreline and thus easily seen and caught. One or two scoops is usually enough to fill a bucket. Fishing can be highly variable depending on the year, as said above, ranging from fair to excellent. Some years they seem to hang in the lower end of the river for the duration of the run, other years spread well into the middle Kenai up to Bing's Landing. Only use a small dip net myself.

    Done quite well on herring at the head of Resurrection Bay last week of April to mid-May. Right about now there should be small schools of herring in the boat harbor down there and they can often be spotted swimming around the docks near the surface. (Tip: Have even seen kings slash through these schools!)

    Enjoy the spring bounty!

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