Derby News – Week 2, 5/25-5/31
VALDEZ, Alaska – Early season halibut fishing will get a boost mid June as anglers converge on Valdez in hopes of being the angler to catch the largest halibut June 14th through 22nd in the Halibut Hullabaloo. Organizers of the Valdez Fish Derbies are offering a prize of $1,000 and say they started the tournament a few years ago to promote halibut fishing before the silver salmon hit the Port. One of the committee members suggested making a big hullabaloo about Halibut and the tournament was born. There is no fee to fish in the Halibut Hullabaloo Tournament. Anglers will just need a valid Valdez Fish Derbies ticket for the day(s) they fish. A daily halibut derby ticket is $10 and a season ticket for the halibut derby is $50.
Each year, the City of Valdez hosts military from all over the state for a Military Appreciation weekend. This year, 77 service men from Alaska were taken out on halibut charters and the entire community is treated to barbeques and pancake breakfasts. Sandy Moore-Livesay organizes the event for the City and said the Charter Captains in Valdez are always eager to donate a charter and volunteer for this event.
At the end of Week 2 in the Halibut Derby, Nicholas Baker of Gatesville, TX is still the overall leader with the 145.6 pound halibut he caught May 26th aboard the Jamie Lynn. Frank Dickinson of Valdez is currently 2nd with the 111.2 pound halibut he caught May 23rd aboard the Loon-A-C and Larry Bazilwick of Fairbanks is holding onto 3rd place with the 110.2 pound halibut he caught May 23rd aboard the Jamie Lynn. Baker is the 1st place weekly winner of the halibut derby and Marvin Bumgardner of Palm Beach Gardens Florida won the 2nd place weekly prize
Alaska Department of Fish and Game reports halibut fishing was a little spotty inside the Sound this past week. Ocean entrances continue to be great places to catch halibut. Rockfish angling has been quite productive with small jigs near rocky reefs. Shrimping continues to be productive, but ADF&G reports it is generally better the farther you get away from ports and suggests anglers start moving pots out a little deeper as the summer moves on.
There’s good news for those looking to stop and dip net before or after fishing Valdez. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game will open the Chitina dip net fishery ahead of its normal June 10 start and will add bonus fish to the catch. The fishery will open June 7th and run though 11:59pm June 8th. A supplemental harvest of an extra 10 red salmon will be allowed during this period. Dip netters will legally be require to remove their nets from the water for only two minutes between Sunday night and Monday morning before the fishery reopens at 12:01am June 9th, running through the second week of the month. The June 9th opening is classified as tentative at this time, so check with ADF&G prior to your trip.
Valdez Fish Derbies tickets are available at the weigh-in shack down by the harbor and at various locations throughout town. For more information visit: www.valdezfishderbies.com
A complete list of vendors, prize information and dates can be found atwww.valdezfishderbies.com
Valdez Halibut Derby Overall Leaders
Weekly Winners – Week 2
Weekly Winners – Week 1