“Soaked to the bone and covered in silver slime, it was an awesome day” is what Corrie Kossow Garrison posted on the Valdez Fish Derbies Facebook page the day after fishing in the 2013 Women’s Silver Salmon Derby. Last year the silver salmon were few and far between but the sun was shining. This Saturday the rain never stopped for the 9th Annual Women’s Silver Salmon Derby, but the fishing was tremendous.
Just over 700 women joined the ranks of the Silver Salmon Sisterhood on Saturday and five hundred and eleven women weighed in their top fish to see if they were in contention for one of the Top 50 prizes. At the end of the day, Regina Blood of Valdez took home the title of Queen of the Silver Salmon Sisterhood with the 15.68 pound silver she reeled in while fishing with friends. Sitting upon the throne set at center stage at the Valdez Civic Center, decked out her in pink Women's Derby bathrobe and tiara, Blood remarked, "This tiara and robe go pretty well with my Xtra Tuffs." While Blood was willing to comment on fashion, she wasn't telling the crowd where she caught the big one. "A lady doesn't give up her secrets."
When asked when she knew her fish was a big one, Blood responded, "Honestly, not until it broke the surface of the water. We really didn't know that I was even pulling in a fish until it got really close. Then we realized it was a really big one." When asked if it was a fighter, Blood responded, " It was big, fat and didn't have any energy." sSounds like the Queen's fish didn't have plans, but Blood said her plans included smoking the big winner.
Jamie Arciniega of Valdez reeled in a 14.96 pound fish that gave her a big fight to take 2nd place in the Women's Silver Salmon Derby and Denise Carter of Fairbanks took 3rd place with a 14.92 pound silver salmon. Blood took home $1,000 in merchandise and an additional $1,000 gift card from Prospector for her efforts. Her fish was just ounces shy of making it into the Top 3 overall standings. On Friday, Carrie Little John of Fairbanks took the lead in the overall derby with a 16.18 pounder. Paul J. Lucio of Wasilla is currently in 2nd place with a 16.10 pound silver, and Brenda Reichenberg of Fairbanks is currently in 3rd place with the 15.80 pound silver she caught Friday. Both Little John and Reichenberg were fishing aboard the Lil' Vixen.
That's right. The Women's Silver Salmon Derby has been going on for 8 years and running. It is the ONLY women's fish derby in Alaska. You can read more about the Women's Fishing Derby History here.
Weigh in station located near the Harbormaster's business office
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