Winter on the Kenai

urbanhillbilly

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I know there are some pockets that are ice free on the Kenai for winter time fishing, but I’m not too familiar with where exactly.

I’ve seen it open on the upper by the bridge and a couple of other spots, but are there some that would be better for a hike in?

I have a friend coming up from Pennsylvania closer to January and we’d like to try and find some holes.
 

4merguide

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I'd probably fish the upper. From the bridge at Kenai Lake down. Years ago, I remember freezing my butt off (ice forming on the guides) catching monster spawned out silvers right below Princess Lodge. Cold but lots-o-fun!
 

urbanhillbilly

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That’s what I’ve heard also. Any tips on keeping the guides from freezing as much? I’ve heard of using non stick cooking spray, like Pam, but haven’t tried it myself.
 

kenaibow fan

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Pam works ok. Problem I’ve had is the stuff works well till it gets saturated with water then they all seem to start freezing up. As for open water on the kenai during the winter well there are plenty of places the river doesn’t freeze over in the winter. Most of the river is open from Skilak down to bings as well. Don’t know about anything below bings cause I have never looked.
 

kenaibow fan

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Something I should have mentioned in the last post usually as a rule of thumb where there is moving water i.e. outlets from lakes or streams you will find open water. Water moves to much/fast to freeze up in freezing temps within reason.
 

AKFreezerFiller

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I have fished the Upper this late on foot in the past but I am curious if it is still floatable in a drift boat. I met a guy last year that said he floats is in a one-man cataraft all the way up until Thanksgiving. Any info would be appreciated for the upcoming weekend.
 

kenaibow fan

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You can check flow rates for kenai river at cooper landing and further down stream. But to answer your question the answer is yes, there is open water/ enough water practically year round and currently.
 

AKFreezerFiller

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Appreciate the response, KBF! I have been watching the flow rates and assumed the answer was yes but wanted to check before dragging the boat down. Gonna try some new things out this weekend.
 

alaska13

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Has anyone fished the Kenai recently, anyone have much luck? Going down to float the upper this weekend, weather looks decent so I'm assuming the fishing should be decent also
 

AKFreezerFiller

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I floated from bridge to Sportsman’s last Sunday with my dad. Not another boat to be seen on the water with single digit temperatures. The flow and fishing were both slow. Caught a spawned out silver and one rainbow. Had another one that seemed like a nice rainbow as it ran downstream then back up before getting off. All that action was in the same run towards the top and nothing else the rest of the float.
 

alaska13

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Has anyone fished the Kenai recently, anyone have much luck? Going down to float the upper this weekend, weather looks decent so I'm assuming the fishing should be decent also
Forgot to respond after going. Had a decent day, hooked around 5 fish, lost one decent rainbow, landed one 12." Weather was in the 40s, tried everything from flesh to beads to leeches, beads and flesh did the work.
 

urbanhillbilly

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Forgot to respond after going. Had a decent day, hooked around 5 fish, lost one decent rainbow, landed one 12." Weather was in the 40s, tried everything from flesh to beads to leeches, beads and flesh did the work.
That sounds pretty awesome still
 

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