Wednesday, July 27, 2016

60lbs King Salmon. Possibility or Days of the Past?

King Salmon are one of the most popular salmon on earth.  Those die hard King anglers would crave at landing a monster exceeding 60lbs.  Whoever where on earth do these 60lbs exist?  The Kenai River in Alaska is always at the top of the list when monster kings are discussed.  The Kenai is a glacially fed 85 mile long river which has 2 runs of Kings.  The first run starts in Mid May and lasts through June.  The second run starts toward the end of June, lasting through July.  The second run normally produces the largest Kings.  In 1985, Less Anderson landed a monster 96.4lbs King which is the official IGFA all tackle record.  However, the king population is on the downturn on the Kenai. Smaller kings in drastically reduced numbers have been the norm for the past few years.  Often the escapement does not meet up to DNR criteria, so the Kenai is shutdown.  Saltwater fishing in Deep Creek, Alaska which is located on the East shore of Cook Inlet is another option but then again the size and numbers are down in recent years.  British Columbia and the USA West Coast such as the Columbia River off good King fishing but not many exceeding 50lbs.  In the late 1960;s Dr. Howard Tanner was one of the main players responsible for introducing salmon into the Great Lakes.  Howard experiment to raise Triploid salmon which would grow huge failed, so now catching a King exceeding 30lbs will put you in the newspapers.  In the mid 70;s King eggs were transplanted into some rivers of Southern Chile for the purpose of commerial ranching.  However, the enterprise failed, but the Kings survived. Rivers like the Petrohue in Chile offer a decent shot at kings over 60lbs and a few each year slightly over 70lbs.  So for the meantime, 60s kings might be a thing of the past.  Sure wish I would have fished the Kenai years ago when I first visited Alaska as a 60lbs replica could be hanging on my wall replacing the 44lbs which I caught on the Alagnak River!

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