Reeling ‘Em In: River closures means best fishing is by the sea

What a morning. The changing zephyrs have finally dispersed the coverlet of smoke masking the inlet and exposing the spectacular vistas across the bay.

Once again, the sky is beginning to gleam with the radiance of a blue sapphire while nary a puppy-sneeze breath of morning air disturbs the sea lingering briefly along the shoreline’s cusp of the retired tide.

Uh, sorry about that. The view from my desk can be a distraction, at times.

Anyway, speaking of tides, they have been brutal enough throughout the week to troll without an engine. From what I’ve heard, anchoring hasn’t been a pleasant experience either unless you were packing the carcass of a boneyard Hummer for a seabed hook.

As for shoreline angling, things have picked up a skosh if you know where to go, what time to go and what to throw.

Bobber and dead bait purists who abhor the thought of traumatizing their karma by repeatedly casting spinners into the water, thus disrupting the serenity of the pond, have been doing better before dawn.

For those who scoff at their particular technique, ice your roll. They regularly entice more strikes than metal flingers if their set-ups are geared correctly, the time and tides are right, and they know how and when to strike once the fish does.

One last thing about the bobber ‘n’ bucket crowd. Even if skunked, they still enjoy the fact that the only state of affairs that comes closer to total relaxation utilizing their system is being pronounced as deceased.

It’s time now to take and look at the fishing report for the week of June 14, 2022

Freshwater Fishing

Special note:

The Anchor River, Deep Creek, and the Ninilchik River will be closed to sport fishing through July 15. Check out the emergency orders at the end of the report for additional info.

Looking for something else? The Bridge Creek Reservoir has pretty fair fishing for Dolly Varden. A small boat would provide access to the best action, but you can pop the fish from shore as well. Try small spinners or flies. Something akin to a #5 Vibrax would kill them on impact.

Saltwater Fishing


Halibut fishing continues to rock in June with an impressive number of hawgs hitting the holds.

Don’t forget that, with this week’s humming tides, your best shot at getting into and landing the flats will be around slack tide. A ten pounder can feel like you are lugging in a lost trawler prop when the salt is smokin’.

King Salmon

Trolling for kings was dismal to almost mediocre last week. Fin hunters were finding the chinook scattered hither and yon throughout Kachemak Bay from Bluff Point to Point Adam.

The action remains slow at Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon depending on when you hit it and with what.

The Hole’s mayor reported that the larger tides have brought in more meat for you and the seals. The arriving schools are acting sketchy and have been spooked by being ripped by the snagging crowd and/or fly pole line slappers using light test and small hooks. More and more fish are cruising around dragging enough body bling to impress attendees of an Association of Professional Piercers Conference and Exposition.

Floating plug cut herring or delicious cuts of mackerel about 16 inches below a bobber still works well when the early morning or evening bite goes on. Cured eggs below a weight enhanced leader line will work too if thrown into the incoming and out-flows of the tides. Be sure to get the bait down to where they hold.

Fishing improved over the weekend in the Seldovia slough and lagoon, but is still limping along. Give a shot at fishing at the onset of the lagoon at high tide for the best chance of tangling with one of the few blackmouths showing up, so far.

Other Saltwater Fishing

There have been impressive minus tides for razor clamming in west Cook Inlet over the week. Charters are available in the Ninilchik area for boat access to the Polly Creek and Crescent River Bar areas. A nice number of medium to large mouthwatering clams can be found in both locations.

Surf fishing has provided anglers consistent early fishing in Cook Inlet for a variety of fish. The most popular locations have been Clam Gulch, Whiskey Gulch, and the tip of the Homer Spit where some landings were rumored to have spawned the inspirations for the creatures featured in the Alien movie franchise.

Emergency Orders

Please review the emergency orders and advisory announcements below in their entirety before heading out on your next fishing trip.

Emergency Order 2-KS-7-29-22 closed all sport fishing in the Ninilchik River from 12:01 a.m. Thursday, June 16 through 11:59 p.m. Friday, July 15, 2022.

Emergency Order 2-KS-7-28-22 closed king salmon fishing north of Bluff Point in all Cook Inlet saltwaters from 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, June 15 through 11:59 p.m. Friday, July 15, 2022.

Emergency Order 2-KS-7-24-22 closed all sport fishing in Deep Creek and the Anchor River from 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, June 8 through 11:59 p.m. Friday, July 15, 2022.

Emergency Order 2-RCL-7-01-22 and 2-RCL-7-02-22 closed all EASTSIDE Cook Inlet beaches to clamming for all species from the mouth of the Kenai River to the southernmost tip of the Homer Spit in 2022.

Nick can be reached at, sometimes, maybe …