The following is courtesy of Valdez Fish Derbies:
VALDEZ, Alaska –There are a few changes this year, but the Valdez Women’s Silver Salmon Derby is happening and a Queen will be crowned. Valdez Fish Derbies will give cash and prizes to the Women catching the three biggest fish. Leaders for the day will be posted at weigh-in and derby officials are asking that only those with a fish close to the top weight go to the weigh-in in order to minimize the number of people at weigh-in. Registration is going on at the Valdez Prospector August 1st through August 8th.
The current leader in the Valdez Silver Salmon Derby is an 11.48 pound fish caught by James Sayre of Valdez. The 2nd place leader is BJ Williams of Barron Wisconsin with a 11.36 pound silver and 3rd place is being held by Steve Tuttle of Anchorage with an 11.34 pound silver. The grand prize for the largest silver salmon caught in Valdez is $5,000 cash. Women’s Derby anglers purchase a ticket for the regular derby, in addition to the $20 fee for Women’s Derby, so they will be eligible for prizes in the regular derby as well as the Women’s Derby. The Women’s Derby Grand Prize is $1,000 cash plus Prospector Prizes valued at $1,000.
There will be no in-person events for the Valdez Women’s Silver Salmon Derby, but Door Prizes will be announced on the Women’s Derby Page of the Valdez Fish Derbies website and Women will get a small gift and can register for one of three prize packages at registration. Check the leader boards just below the Harbor Masters Office and on the weigh-in shack.
The halibut coming into the weigh-in station have been sizeable since the start of the derby and this week was no exception. Jason Long of Fairbanks reeled in a 179.2 pound halibut aboard the Halibut Grove. His fish was just shy of the top three overall, but was large enough to win the 1st place weekly prizes. Jay Jeppson of St. George, Utah took 2nd place for the week with a 166.4 pound halibut caught July 31st. Although his fish didn’t stay on the leader board for long, Ryan McCune reeled in a 129.8 pound halibut out by Wessels Reef. “We had an awesome day out there,” McCune said. “It was really nice. Waves were really small and we had a good time catching big fish all day.”
In the Valdez Halibut Derby, Jim Rothenbuhler of Salcha, Alaska is leading with a 201.2 pound fish he caught June 23rd. Kenny Tussey of North Pole is currently in 2nd place with a 193.4 pound halibut caught July 5th and Andy Eiman of Valdez is holding onto 3rd place with a 180.4 pound halibut he caught July 18th. The Halibut derby runs through September 6th. More information on Valdez Halibut Derby can be found at: www.valdezfishderbies.com.
Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders
1st Jim Rothenbuhler Salcha, AK 201.2 lbs. June 23 The Bucketlist
2nd Kenny Tussey North Pole, AK 193.4 lbs. July 5 Dan Orion
3rd Andy Eiman Valdez, AK 180.4 lbs. July 18 Crista June
Halibut Derby – Weekly Winners
1st Jason Long Fairbanks, AK 179.2 lbs. July 29 Halibut Grove
2nd Jay Jeppson St. George, UT 166.4 lbs. July 31 The Reflection
Silver Derby – Overall Leaders
1st James Sayre Valdez, AK 11.48 lbs. July 25 Rental VO
2nd BJ Williams Barron, WI 11.36 lbs. July 30 Kai Moana
3rd Steve Tuttle Anchorage, AK 11.34 lbs. July 31 Reflection