Kenai Peninsula Fishing in August
By Nigel Fox

Chrome-bright rainbow caught August 3rd on the Kenai River. ©Jeff Murray photo.

Kenai Peninsula Fishing: July is Great, but August is Even Better

Kenai Peninsula fishing in July seems to be the month everyone wants to be on the water fishing. The weather is amazing, everything has bloomed, there are two runs of salmon in the Kenai River, and saltwater fishing is off the charts. I will admit July is pretty magical, but August is my favorite month to for Kenai Peninsula fishing. One of my favorite things about August is it’s not that crowded on the river and the trout and silver fishing starts to get good. Here are a few other reasons why you should consider Alaska in August.

When August 1st hits it seems like it’s a ghost town on the Kenai Peninsula. Of course king salmon season has closed and the second run of sockeye salmon are starting to slow down which seems to be the main drive for people to come to the Kenai River in July. It is almost like the Kenai River does a reset the first week of August. For the first ten days of August the red (sockeye) salmon are still coming in strong. The past few years we have seen better fish counts at the end of July and first part of August.  We also get a few early silver (coho) salmon mixed in with reds, which makes for a nice surprise on the Kenai River. 

Fresh Kenai River sockeye are hard to beat. © Nigel Fox photo.

Additionally, with all of the salmon that have been caught and cleaned through the month of July, the rainbow trout and Dolly Varden go on a feeding frenzy. Some of my best days of trout fishing on the Kenai have been in the beginning of August. 

Away from the Kenai River but still on the Kenai Peninsula, Seward has some incredible silver salmon, rockfish, lingcod and halibut fishing, with the silver fishing getting better later in the month. The Cook Inlet saltwater fishery is still going strong and the silver salmon fishing improves daily.  

A quick limit of silvers for these two on the middle Kenai River. © Nigel Fox photo.

As we move through the month of August the silver salmon start to pour into the Anchor, Ninilchik, Deep Creek, Kenai and Kasilof Rivers. Once the middle of the month rolls around, I’m getting limits of silvers for my clients on a daily basis on the Kenai. By the end of August we see returns of chrome steelhead in the streams on the lower part of the Kenai Peninsula. The trout season kicks into full swing by the third week when the king and sockeye salmon start to spawn. It is not uncommon to see hundred-fish days while catching and releasing trout on my guided trips. The weather generally stays fairly nice the entire month and there are considerably less people during August; when compared with June and July it is like night and day. With less people it seems like we see more wildlife as well, which is always an added bonus.

A fresh Deep Creek steelhead caught at the end of August. © Jeff Murray photo.

If you decide to visit the beautiful state of Alaska and wonder when a great time is to come, you should consider August. With great fishing, fairly good weather and considerably less people than June and July, it’s a solid choice. August is a sure bet for an Alaska dream trip of a lifetime!  



Nigel Fox has been partners with Jeremy Anderson and Nick Ohlrich at Alaska Drift Away Fishing for close to two decades. He is a lifelong Alaskan and has been fishing on the Kenai River since he was a young boy, and each year he learns more about the intricate world of catching trophy salmon and trout on the Kenai and Kasilof rivers.