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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

February 17, 2014 at 2:16 PM

Rough water and strong winds slowed catch at Olympic Peninsula Salmon Derby

The Olympic Peninsula Salmon Derby, a three-day event, which ended on Monday, Feb. 17, saw some action although the miserable weather cut down the catches dramatically.

Derby anglers weighed-in 171 fish over six pounds, and was about the same that was recorded in 2011 but less than the 217 in 2012 and the 249 in 2013.

Here is the news release from the derby officials below: 

GARDINER, 17 February 2014 – The 2014 Olympic Peninsula Salmon Derby was a success despite dire forecasts and challenging weather. The lure of big prizes drew a smaller-than-usual band of determined anglers to compete. The wind was the biggest factor, keeping some from going out and driving others into port. Nevertheless, many nice fish were caught.

Fishing results were good, considering the conditions. 171 winter blackmouth chinook salmon over six pounds were submitted, below last year’s record of 249 6+ pounders, but in line with earlier derbies. The average weight was 8.6 pounds. Anglers were in competition for a big prize list worth $22,833 – including a $10,000 first prize plus four $500 “Mystery Fish” prizes, open to any submitted fish of at least six pounds. The final prize ladder had 51 winning fish; the smallest prize-winner was 9.65 pounds, and the winners had an average prize-winning weight of 11.1 pounds. (All weights are in decimal pounds, not pounds and ounces.)

The first prize of $10,000 went to Larry Quesnell of Mt. Vernon for a 15.4 pound salmon. The $2,000 second place winner was Jay Campbell of Port Townsend with a 15.25 pound fish. The $1,000 third place prize, donated by 7 Cedars Casino of Blyn, a loyal supporter of the derby every year, went to Geoffrey Cobb of Port Angeles with a 14.25 pound salmon. Large cash prizes are funded through ticket sales, but all other prizes were donated by area residents and businesses. Net proceeds from each derby support local emergency services and other community needs. Gardiner Salmon Derby Association, a local 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, runs this ongoing annual event.

Monday’s Awards Ceremony began at 2:00PM at the Gardiner Boat Ramp. This event followed a free BBQ for anglers and also the local community. Dan Tatum, President of Gardiner Salmon Derby Association, just shakes his head about the weather.

“This was the toughest we’ve had in years, with gusts of 40-50 mph. That’s rough in a small boat. Weather reports before the derby were discouraging, which kept a lot of people away. We sold 600 tickets this year, less than we hoped due to the weather.” Tatum adds “We had decent fishing, considering…but everybody who was out there knows why this derby gets called “the iron man derby.” People came a long way to visit our area, from Idaho and even Florida. All those visitors help the region during slow February.” Tatum was glad that 2014 derby tickets were available for the Wounded Warriors program. He also explained that plans for using the 2014 derby proceeds have not yet been decided, noting that We’ll provide more details about this donation at the Appreciation Dinner.” This annual community potluck dinner is scheduled for 6PM on Saturday March 29th at the Gardiner Community Center, and coincides with the association’s annual meetings.

The Olympic Peninsula Salmon Derby uses Selective Fishery exclusively – only clipped-fin hatchery fish can be submitted. Because fishing derbies put pressure on wild stocks, this annual event provides leadership for a sustainable, year-round fishery. The Derby is part of the Northwest Salmon Derby Series, run by the Northwest Marine Trade Association (NMTA). All Derby ticket holders are entered in the NMTA’s end-of-year (September) grand prize boat drawing.

For a list of the fish submitted, and other details, visit the Derby website www.GardinerSalmonDerby.org and the derby Facebook page www.Facebook.com/SalmonDerby.

Here are the final Top-50 results:

# Time Tkt# Wgt * ** Angler From Date ***
1 10:40 0004 15.40 6s Larry Quesnell Mt. Vernon Sun
2 9:16 0183 15.25 9t Jay Campbell Port Townsend Sun
3 9:55 0774 14.25 9t Geoffrey Cobb Port Angeles Mon
4 12:31 0683 14.20 6s Mike Watkins Kingston Sun
5 13:32 0949 13.55 6s R.J. Lampers Snohomish Sun
6 9:18 0195 12.50 9t Brenda Chisolm Port Townsend Sun
7 9:14 0432 12.35 9t Jason Minish Port Hadlock Sat
8 11:48 1041 12.25 6g Danny Gehler Port Orchard Sun
9 13:30 0850 12.15 6f Chad Williams Port Angeles Sat
10 11:55 0858 12.00 6f Roy Scott Port Angeles Sat
11 11:39 0606 12.00 6s Mark Hansen Port Ludlow Mon
12 13:20 0659 11.60 6s Craig Watson Lithia, FL Sat
13 9:10 0776 11.60 6a Tim Roenig Port Angeles Mon
14 14:36 0949 11.55 6s R.J. Lampers Snohomish Sat
15 11:15 0520 11.55 9t Brian Wilhelm Kirkland Mon
16 11:55 0503 11.25 9t Pete Smith Seattle Sat
17 12:44 0672 11.25 9t James Cook Lakewood Sat
18 11:50 0044 11.05 6s Kevin Nitta Sequim Sat
19 12:27 0774 11.05 9t Geoffrey Cobb Port Angeles Sat
20 10:52 0799 11.00 6g Edward Cooper Port Angeles Sun
21 11:50 0867 11.00 9t Mike Thacker Chimacum Mon
22 11:50 0034 10.90 6g Shane Hagar Dungeness Sat
23 14:11 0519 10.90 6s Gavin Schaeffer Seattle Sat
24 11:37 0994 10.90 6s Glen Hogarth Whidbey Island Mon
25 13:45 0664 10.85 9t John Drew Spanaway Sat
26 13:11 0662 10.75 9t Joe Schmidt Bellingham Sat
27 13:18 0656 10.75 6s Jim Parsons Gig Harbor Sat
28 11:40 0043 10.65 6s Fred Manzer Sequim Sun
29 11:30 1037 10.60 6t C.J. Scott Port Orchard Mon
30 11:45 0707 10.60 6s Chris Mooney Edgewood Mon
31 12:20 0007 10.45 9t Mark McBride Sequim Sun
32 13:19 0658 10.40 6s Wally Roberts Twin Harbor, ID Sat
33 13:54 0992 10.30 6s Brian Stebba Whidbey Island Sun
34 11:49 0996 10.25 6s Stan Reed Jr. Oak Harbor Mon
35 9:00 0510 10.20 9t Frank Bergstron Port Townsend Sun
36 12:43 0675 10.15 9t James Nelson Puyallup Sat
37 13:20 0657 10.15 6s Darren Rose Bonney Lake Sat
38 11:40 0949 10.15 6s R.J. Lampers Snohomish Mon
39 8:30 0832 10.10 6a Kyle Madison Port Angeles Sat
40 13:20 0657 10.05 6s Darren Rose Bonney Lake Sat
41 11:50 0868 10.05 9t Jared Thacker Port Hadlock Mon
42 9:14 1001 10.00 9t John Stroeder Port Townsend Sun
43 11:10 0942 10.00 6t Chad Booth Bellingham Mon
44 11:38 1199 9.95 6t Jay Vanputten Burlington Mon
45 14:30 0942 9.90 9t Chad Booth Bow/Burlington Sat
46 12:56 0868 9.85 9t Jared Thacker Port Hadlock Sat
47 11:54 0814 9.85 6g David Gauthum Sequim Mon
48 14:48 0626 9.75 6s Brad Ennis Hoodsport Sat
49 11:39 0673 9.70 9t Mike Darrah Lakewood Mon
50 14:03 1061 9.65 6s Robin Clomce Port Orchard Sat

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