Koniag holds title to the surface estate of approximately 56,860 acres of land surrounding Karluk Lake, Karluk River and the Sturgeon River. These water bodies and the lands surrounding them provide world-class hunting and fishing opportunities as well as being some of the few remaining links to traditional ways of life for the shareholders of Karluk and Larsen Bay. Because of this, Koniag Lands and Natural Resources Department is working to preserve the integrity and history of the lands while providing job and business opportunities for all Koniag Shareholders.
Management of lands in the Sturgeon and Karluk River drainages is the responsibility of Koniag’s Lands & Natural Resources Department (LNR). LNR staff works closely with residents and Shareholders of the villages of Karluk and Larsen Bay to ensure the lands are being managed in a way that is beneficial to all Shareholders. One of the ways the LNR staff does this is to bring management issues to the Karluk River Advisory Committee for consideration and recommendation.
Karluk River Advisory Committee
The Karluk River Advisory Committee (KRAC) was formed in early 2008 to review potential management options and objectives as requested by Koniag for the Koniag owned surface estate in the Karluk and Sturgeon River drainages and Uyak Bay and to make formal recommendations of the Committee to Koniag, Incorporated. Additionally, it is the purpose of the Committee to provide a source of communication between Koniag Shareholders/Descendants and staff.
KRAC is made up of three shareholders and/or descendants from the original village corporation of Karluk, three shareholders and/or descendants from the original village corporation of Larsen Bay and one Koniag staff person. The three seats representing each village corporation are further defined as follows:
Tribal Government: Suitable applicants would be employees or council members of the tribal governments for Karluk IRA and Larsen Bay Tribal Councils. (Note: these seats will be selected by the tribal council members.)
Commercial Operator: Suitable applicants would consist of lodge owners, registered guides (hunting or fishing) and transporters.
Subsistence/At-Large: Suitable applicants for this seat need only be shareholders/descendants of Karluk or Larsen Bay. If you currently utilize subsistence opportunities in the areas to be advised upon, please indicate in the space provided.
Koniag is continuously accepting applications for future positions on the KRAC. If you are interested in learning more about this committee, please contact us at 907-486-2530.
Koniag entered into a conservation easement with the State of Alaska and the US Fish and Wildlife Service in 2002. Terms of the agreement include development restrictions and use regulations for Koniag, as well as allowing the US Fish and Wildlife Service the right to manage all unguided (i.e. private) use upon the land. Koniag retained the right to manage and collect revenue from all commercial operations.
Recreating on Easement Lands
The conservation easement provides opportunities for both guided and unguided users to recreate on Koniag lands. Opportunities abound for phenomenal outdoor adventures on the rivers and lakes and the adjoining lands.
The Karluk River is host to one of Kodiak Island’s exciting king salmon runs. The river is also home to sockeye (reds), pinks, and cohos (silvers) as well as steelhead, dolly varden and rainbow trout. While you fish keep a close eye out for the local fox, sitka blacktail deer and the famous Kodiak Brown Bear.
Choose to rent one of Koniag’s cabins for an extended stay or camp along the banks as you float the river.
Karluk Lake is an ideal setting for wildlife viewing and passive recreation. From Koniag’s cabins on Camp Island, at the south end of the lake, you can sit on the deck and watch the eagles float overhead while bears trek the opposite lakeshore. Or if you are more adventurous, utilize the services of a bear viewing guide and visit the viewing platform that looks over Thumb River.
While a little harder to get to than Karluk Lake or Karluk River, the Sturgeon River offers phenomenal runs of Chum (Dog) salmon early in the year. Additionally, pink and coho salmon can be found making their way upstream, along with the steelhead and the always present rainbow trout.