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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

June 3, 2011 at 10:57 AM

Massive king salmon caught Thursday off west side of Queen Charlotte Islands in British Columbia

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Our neighbors to the north in Canada, or well one specific angler, may have just hooked what could be the largest king salmon in the 9th Annual Salmon Masters Tournament that runs from June 2-4 at three lodges run by West Coast Resorts in British Columbia.

George Cuthbert, president of West Coast Resorts sent an email on Thursday informing me that the leading king salmon which weighed a whopping 70.8 pounds was caught by Steve Fancsy from Ontario, Canada on the opening day of the tournament at the Englefield Bay Lodge on the west side of Queen Charlotte Islands.

“This enormous chinook is the largest caught during the tournament in it’s nine year history,” Cuthbert said. “A 59 pound king was landed just the day before the tournament started.”

Fancsy was fishing with a cut-plug herring when he hooked the king at Cape Henry, and it took over an hour to land the big one.

“Apparently it was quite a battle, and they had everything aligned with good weather conditions, and there were plenty of sea lions in the area that could have taken it,” Cuthbert said. “They chased the big fish all over the place, and there were several other potential winning fish as well that were hooked and lost that day.”

Cuthbert said the next largest king caught weighed 44 pounds and was taken off Hippa Island on Queen Charlotte Islands just to the north of where Fancsy hooked his fish.

The three-day tournament is held at three of West Coast’s lodges including The Lodge at Hippa Island, The Lodge at Englefield Bay and The Lodge at Whale Channel on the central coastline of British Columbia just north of Bella Bella.

Anglers compete for a whopping $360,000 cash prize pool, and one lucky angler (whom at this point is Fancsy) will take home $115,000 for the largest chinook caught, and enjoy a seat in the IGFA Offshore Championship Tournament the following year in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Before the tournament the lodge throws a big pre-event reception in Vancouver, B.C. where all the 128 anglers attend.

Proceeds from the tournament go to support salmon enhancement by the Pacific Salmon Foundation and the children’s Make A Wish Foundation.

“For the second time we had angler who announced that he would make a $50,000 donation to salmon enhancement, and $10,000 to the Make A Wish Foundation,” Cuthbert said.

Cuthbert says about a third of the anglers who participate in the tournament come from Washington state. Entry fee which includes all the transportation and accommodations is $7,000 per person.

For details go to the West Coast Resorts website.

We’ll announce the final results of the tournament after Saturday, June 4, but it might be hard to top a 70 pound king, which is considered a once in a lifetime king salmon.

(Photo courtesy of West Coast Resorts)

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