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Craig Medred

KENAI -- Alaska's most ignorant fisheries are now underway at the mouths of the Kenai and Kasilof rivers.

"Why is the river running the wrong way?" a Yuppie-ish woman in spanking new waders asked as a near 30-foot Cook Inlet tide came surging back into the river's mouth on a sunny Monday afternoon.

Ah, because the tide is coming in?

This might all be funny if it was only about silly questions. But it isn't. It's also about responsible use of Alaska resources.

One would think that before setting off to kill things, the men and women new to what the 49th state calls "personal use" dipnet fisheries would at least learn what it is they are legally allowed to kill. One would be wrong...

Craig Medred

Kenai River dipnetters appeared to be on the verge of going apoplectic Friday at the news the Alaska Department of Fish and Game might allow an emergency opening of the commercial setnet salmon fishery off the mouth of that river...

Craig Medred
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Round one of the duel of the dioramas opened in Anchorage on Wednesday when Bass Pro Shops swung wide the doors on its first and only store in the lone U.S. state with no bass...

Craig Medred

Hoss won his independence on the Fourth of July. It was easier for him than for me. The drugs put him peacefully to sleep, and he closed his eyes for the last time. By the time they opened again, he had quietly crossed over to the other side. No longer would he labor to breathe or bark those occasional, lone, sharp barks that came when he felt pain no one could see.

Though I'd spent weeks preparing for this day, it was bad. There are no easy ways to say goodbye to your best friend for the last time. Hoss was 16 years old, and we'd spent more than a dozen of those years trading thoughts...

Craig Medred

Two women badly mauled by grizzly bears in the Anchorage area in less than two months, with at least one common denominator: no bear spray.

Can anyone say with certainty that it would have kept either of them out of the hospital? No. But this much can be said: Without weapons of self-defense, both women were helpless against sow grizzlies instinctively attacking to protect their cubs.

Lots of people at this point can get into a nice debate about bear spray and guns. Let's not. Have you ever tried running with a gun capable of stopping a charging grizzly?...

Craig Medred

What appears to be the largest halibut caught in the Pacific Ocean in at least a decade has been landed in the Alaska Panhandle port of Gustavus, but it will not be a world record.

Seventy-seven-year-old Jack McGuire from Anaheim, Calif., lost the opportunity for the sport-fishing record book when his 482-pound halibut was shot and then harpooned before it was pulled aboard the charter boat Icy Rose.

International Game Fish Association rules ban the use of any tools other than a net or gaffe for landing fish, and the Florida-based IGFA maintains the international record book...

Craig Medred

Two months after trumpeting federal success in boosting the value of U.S. commercial fisheries, while dissing the value of the nation's sport fisheries, the National Marine Fisheries Service has conceded it cooked the books.

The original fisheries service report in April that led Laine Welch, the commercial fishing columnist for the Anchorage Daily News, to trumpet that "the debate over which sector -- commercial or recreational fishing -- provides the bigger economic punch can finally be put to rest...

Craig Medred

While little Mosca the Jack Russell terrier was being noisily killed by wolves earlier this month in Chugach State Park just above Anchorage, the dog's owner was hiking along a trail to Wolverine Peak unaware of what was going on because he was wearing headphones.

Hikers high on the 4,491-foot mountain clearly visible from Alaska's largest city said they heard a dog fight going on far below, but weren't sure what was happening.

"We heard this dog barking,'' one of them said. "This dog was just like going crazy.''

They were baffled as to the reason for the noise until after they met Brandon Ward on the trail yelling "Mosca! Mosca! Mosca!'' He told the hikers he was looking for his lost white dog. The dog, Ward told them, had run away...

Craig Medred

While little Mosca the Jack Russell terrier was being noisily killed by wolves earlier this month in Chugach State Park just above Anchorage, the dog's owner was hiking along a trail to Wolverine Peak unaware of what was going on because he was wearing headphones.

Hikers high on the 4,491-foot mountain clearly visible from Alaska's largest city said they heard a dog fight going on far below, but weren't sure what was happening.

"We heard this dog barking,'' one of them said. "This dog was just like going crazy.''

They were baffled as to the reason for the noise until after they met Brandon Ward on the trail yelling "Mosca! Mosca! Mosca!'' He told the hikers he was looking for his lost white dog. The dog, Ward told them, had run away...

Craig Medred

Let's hear it for the National Park Service saving Alaska's nearly non-existent park visitors from the scourge of wholly non-existent drones.

All 11 people who visited the Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve sans drones last June can now stand up and applaud National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis for protecting them from aerial threats.

Nevermind that 11 people amounts to maybe a couple groups of packrafters floating from the Aniakchak Caldera to Aniakchak Bay , and that the non-existent access to this 601,000-acre park unit in Western Alaska makes it difficult to pack a drone in there...

Craig Medred

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