Kenai River Anglers / Boaters Needed for State Parks Study



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  • Kenai River Anglers / Boaters Needed for State Parks Study

    Current and former Kenai anglers and boaters are invited to help identify issues and brainstorm solutions as part of a State Parks study of recreation use on the river. More information about the study is available at the following link:

    Researchers are seeking:

    • Volunteers to attend a “focus group” on Feb 26 from 7 to 9:30 pm in Anchorage
    • Volunteers to review or “pre-test” surveys that will be used in the study

    If you are interested, please return the following information (cut and paste it into an email) to by Saturday, Feb 21.

    1. Your name: ____________________________

    2. Years experience fishing or boating the Kenai: ____ years

    3. Type an X next to the river segments you use regularly:
    Upper Kenai (Kenai Lake to Skilak Lake)
    Middle Kenai (Skilak to Sterling Highway Bridge in Soldotna)
    Lower Kenai (Soldotna to the mouth)

    4. Type an X next to the type of trips you take regularly:
    Powerboat-based fishing for kings
    Powerboat-based fishing for other species
    Driftboat-based fishing for any species
    Bank angling for reds
    Other types of fishing
    Boat-based scenic or wildlife viewing trips

    5. Type an X if you are interested in…
    attending the focus group;
    reviewing draft surveys; or

    We’ll inform those selected for the “focus group” by Monday Feb 23 (if we have more volunteers than we need, we'll randomly select participants from the list).

    For those interested in reviewing the draft survey, we’ll provide a website where you can complete the survey and make comments in April.

    Thanks for your help!

    Doug Whittaker, Ph.D. and Bo Shelby, Ph.D.
    Confluence Research and Consulting
    Anchorage, Alaska and Corvallis, Oregon

  • #2
    This should probably be posted in the boating forums too.
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.


    • #3
      What is the "goal" of the study and what will the results of the study be used for once completed?


      • #4
        Brief summary of the study and goals

        2009 Kenai River Recreation Use Study

        The Kenai River is widely known as one of the most outstanding recreation resources in Alaska, but its popularity has led to high use and impacts at some times and places, which are an on-going challenge to Kenai River managers. While several agencies have (sometimes overlapping) management responsibilities on the Kenai, State Parks is the lead managing agency for recreation use on the river and adjacent state land. The last major study of recreation use impacts was in 1992-93, and the most recent Comprehensive Management Plan (1997) identified the need for more information about recreation use and impacts. Funding for the study became available this year; Confluence Research and Consulting (with offices in Anchorage and Corvallis, Oregon) received the contract to conduct the study for State Parks and the KRSMA board. More information about Confluence is available at their website

        The study will assess the “state of recreation” on the river. The overall goal is to describe use levels and patterns, impacts, user and trip characteristics, impact tolerances, attitudes toward general management strategies, and acceptability of specific management actions. The study will address these issues through coordinated user, guide, and property owner surveys, as well as field assessments (detailed information about the amount, type, and distribution of use through the season). Users will be surveyed on-site from May through September, with a longer follow-up survey sent to a random sample of on-site users.

        The study is primarily directed at “recreation experience” issues rather than biophysical impacts (e.g., bank trampling, boat-caused erosion, hydrocarbon pollution), although respondents will be asked about management actions that may be used to address those impacts. Results are expected to be considered by State Parks, the KRSMA Advisory Board, other agencies, stakeholders, and the public before additional recreation management initiatives are taken on the river. The study is not designed to address fisheries management issues (e.g., fishing regulations; allocations between commercial, subsistence, and sport fishing users).

        Study Schedule
        A study plan is being developed in February 2009 in collaboration with the River Use Committee of the KRSMA Board and agency staff. Researchers will develop draft surveys in March and pre-test them in April and early May. On-site surveying will occur from mid-May through September. Data will be analyzed through the winter and results will be presented in spring 2010.


        • #5
          Anchorage Meeting

          There were a number of users that I spoke to about this that would have been interested had the meeting about the Kenai been anywhere CLOSE to the Kenai. Lots of users live here on the Peninsula that cannot make a night meeting in Anchorage. Any chance of a change in venue? Another meeting on the Peninsula? I think you'd get a lot of local resident input by including this area.



          • #6
            Kenai River Recreation Study meetings on the peninsula

            We are conducting seven focus group meetings, with all but two on the peninsula. We are organizing the particular Anchorage meeting through a solicitation on the AK Outdoor Forums because we're interested in hearing from interested users (or former users) who aren't down in Kenai/Soldotna in the winter. For similar reasons, we have organized a meeting in Cooper Landing for this coming Wed afternoon (at the Community Center).

            For the five Peninsula meetings, we have asked KRSMA river use committee members, State Parks staff, and obvious stakeholder groups to help us fill the focus group meetings. Because the stakeholder groups and KRSMA river use committee members are a diverse bunch, we believe the attendees they are inviting will be similarly diverse and so we have not used a forum-based solicitation to find more.

            We recognize that there are many boaters and anglers who know the river well and are interested in the study. We appreciate that interest and hope the study can tap into it (if not through the focus groups, then through the "pre-test" of the survey). The focus group meetings are just one part of the study, and the format of these meetings necessarily limits the number of people that can attend (while the study budget limits the number that will be held). By asking for volunteers for an Anchorage meeting, we were trying to cover greater diversity, not less. We're sorry if that has been taken another way (and we see how it could seem that way).

            Having said all that, if you are on the Peninsula and are interested in attending a focus group meeting, we may be able to make that happen. There is a previously scheduled meeting on this Friday afternoon (Feb 20 from 1:30 to 4:30 pm) that may not be filled. As with the Anchorage meeting volunteers, please send us your name and contact information (email and phone), the information about your river experience (cut and paste the form from our original posting), and make sure to note that you are interested in the Fri Feb 20 meeting.

            Also, in case it wasn't clear, we are interested in volunteers for the "pre-test" no matter where you live. The pre-test is where we get invaluable comments about whether the survey questions are understandable, make sense, and address important issues.

            Hope that clarifies things.

            Doug Whittaker



            • #7

              I think it should be posted in the boat forum. Thanks for this share


              • #8
                the process should be in proper way.

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                • #9
                  Quality of Kenai River Experience gets Needed Attention

                  The issue of experiencing the Kenai River can vary greatly. Those as a "First Time" user, like a guided client or guest and that of an Alaskan repeat user who's grown up with the river can be very different. All types will hopefully see the River as a sustainable wild resource. How will non-residents be represented in the survey? Will commercial interests and independent recreational interests be weighted equally? Very glad this survey is being conducted with results being made widely available.


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