Seals vs Trophy Rainbow Trout

The last 30 years on the Kenai River I have seen the trout fishing go from ok to fantastic after fish and game put release limits of 16″ above Skilak Lake and over 18″ below the lake. I was pretty lucky to have learned how to fish Skilak Lake for big rainbows that stay in the lake most of the year. I have had some great trout and dolly fishing over the years.

But fast forward to around 2015 were the big rainbow numbers started dropping way off. I just thought maybe It was just me so I start talking to others to see what they thoughts and everyone that I talked to said the same thing there didn’t seem to be as many trophy rainbows. The one thing that everyone agreed on was there were hundreds of seals coming into the lower Kenai and a good amount of them were working their way up the Kenai, clear up to Kenai Lake. It has gotten so bad that we have seals living in Kenai and Skilak lake all year.

My last day up at Skilak where the Kenai dumps in, there is a right and left drainage and there was a seal at both entrances. I watch a seal eating a good size rainbow in the slower waters. I believe if this is a problem that is getting worse every year. If anyone has any info or picture of Kenai seals eating large rainbows please let me know. Even some of our guest have seen a decline in larger rainbows.