The Olympic Peninsula was a huge success with 217 salmon weighed-in over the three-day President’s Day Weekend for 650 anglers who turned out for a chance at the $10,000 first place prize. The average weight of the chinook was 8.44 pounds.
Here is what Larry Bennett, the head state Fish and Wildlife sampler in the Strait of Juan de Fuca had to say about salmon fishing:
“There was a lot of fish coming into the ramp especially at Port Angeles,” Bennett said. “The top fish in the derby (caught by John Otness of Tacoma) was caught off the Diamond Point area in the entrance to Discovery Bay. The weather was pretty bad on the east end of the derby areas, and it was windy especially on Saturday and it got a little better on Sunday.”
“The tide was a backward one to fish at Winter Hole, but there was some fish caught there by those trolling and downrigging,” Bennett said. “You want to fish Winter Hole on the outgoing tide along the wall on the edge of the drop off at the three humps where the fish get stacked up.”
“I was at Freshwater Bay on the opener (last Thursday) and didn’t see anyone bring any fish in, but I imagine there was fish caught there over the weekend,” Bennett said. “If the weather gets better then we should see some fish coming in from Port Angeles to Sekiu.”
(Photo courtesy of the Gardiner Bay Salmon Derby Association, and pictured is winner John Otness of Tacoma.)