Despite the snow storm that swept Castlegar and area on Saturday, 118 people participated in Scotties Marina’s 13th Annual Fishing Derby.
Even with low visibility on the lake, Debbie Imeson, owner of Scotties Marina, said participants did well.
“[The fishing] was actually quite good,” she said. “That I know of, there were at least 18 fish that came in and I’ve heard that there were other fish caught that people just didn’t bother — they weren’t big enough or they didn’t make it back in time.”
People had trouble making it back due not only to the weather but also because the cut off time at the scale was 3 p.m. this year instead of 4 p.m.
“The last couple of years we’d had so many prizes to draw for and stuff that it just took too long, it got dark. So this year I changed the finish time to 3 p.m. and it was a bit too early for people who like to go a certain distance up the lake,” said Imeson. “So we’re kind of working on that.”
That being said, she also didn’t hear of anyone making it back late who’d caught anything bigger than the fish that won.
Third place went to Fred Maloff with a 12.70-pound fish. In second place was Scott Beauchamp with a 12.9-pound fish and in first was Scott Bartlett with a 15.2 pounder.
All of the winning fish this year were Dolly Varden trout, whereas last year the first place fish was a Rainbow trout at 14.7 pounds.
Imeson said the derby has always been held in February and the first year it was actually held on Valentine’s Day.
“We just thought, ‘We’ll just have a fun little derby and hope to sell some gas’ because business was pretty slow that time of year. And it was maybe 20 guys or whatever, but it just grew and grew and grew,” she said.
The derby has grown so much that this year the stakes were high —there was $5,900 in the pot. First place received $3,540, second place received $1,475 and third received $885.
Imeson also wanted to thank local businesses that contributed to the event.