Russian River campground, road to close for improvement work

An angler casts for sockeye salmon in the “sanctuary” area of the Russian River-Kenai River confluence on June 28, 2020 near Cooper Landing. (Elizabeth Earl/KDLL)

A popular Kenai Peninsula recreation spot near Cooper Landing will be closed for nearly a year to partially rebuild a road and reinforce parts of the hillside along the Kenai River, U.S. Forest Service officials said.

The Russian River Campground Road and campground will be closed to the public from Aug. 1, 2022, to June 1, 2023, the Peninsula Clarion reported.

Among the scheduled work will be rebuilding the campground road to make it safer for cars, recreational vehicles and pedestrians, the forest service said in a statement. The shoulder will also be widened, and a new guardrail will be installed.

Work to reinforce the hillside along the riverbank will make the area less prone to landslides and surface erosion, and officials said the work is scheduled to be done before the sockeye salmon sport fishing season opens.

“Reducing the long-term threat of erosion and landslides is essential to preserving the water quality for healthy salmon spawning and rearing in the Russian and Kenai rivers,” the statement said.

The service also said residents and visitors should be mindful of the upcoming closure when making recreation plans for the area.

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