Derby News – Week 13, 8/10-8/16
VALDEZ, Alaska – Anglers are having to fish a bit harder for silvers than normal, but some big fish have been brought into Port Valdez. And we found out this week that timing can be the key to winning in the Valdez Derby. Randy Main of Anchorage reeled in a 17.08 pound silver on Saturday aboard the Tom N Jo. Just 40 minutes after Main brought his fish to the weigh-in station, Terri Walters of Fairbanks brought a silver salmon to the weigh-in that was also exactly 17.08 pounds.
Since Main’s silver was weighed in first, he took the 1st place daily prize in the Valdez Silver Salmon Derby and Walters took 2nd place daily. Being first also won Main the chance to take the 3rd place spot on the leader board. The 3rd place prize in the Silver Salmon Derby is $2,000 cash. Dan Eide of Valdez is currently in 2nd place for the Silver Salmon Derby and stands to win $5,000 cash. Eighteen-year-old and 2014 Women’s Silver Salmon Derby winner, Amanda Town, is holding onto 1st place. If Towne’s silver salmon remains the largest through August 31st, she will take home a $15,000 cash prize. Towne said in an interview following the Women’s Derby that she would use her winnings to pay for college.
Storms prevented many anglers from heading out for Halibut this past week. According to Bonnie Woods, many of the halibut charters switched over to silver salmon fishing for the week. Weather should improve this week and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game says, “Your best bet is heading out to ocean entrances, but if you don’t have the gas, try Blackstone and maybe out by Applegate”.
If you’re headed to Valdez and looking for a quick break along the way, you might consider dropping a line at Thompson Lake. That’s the lower lake next to Blueberry Lake just off the Richardson Highway. ADF&G says they have stocked both Thompson Lake and Ruth Pond in Valdez to provide some great family fishing opportunities. They suggest using small flies, spinners or bait below a bobber. The blueberry picking has been tremendous in Thompson Pass also.
There will be another Big Prize Friday on August 29th. The angler catching the largest silver that day will win $500 cash in addition to the daily prizes. Every derby ticket purchased in Valdez is a chance to win a Ford 4×4 F-150 Truck from Seekins Ford and the Valdez Fish Derbies. The drawing for the truck will be held Sunday, August 31st.
Information, pictures and standings for the Silver Salmon Derby and Halibut Derby can be found on the www.valdezfishderbies.com website.