Why should a fisherman work when there are so many opportunities to angle for dollars? Among them:
K&K Spring Derby, April 26-May 4 at Lake Pend Oreille, with a $15,000 payout including $2,500 for the top rainbow and $1,200 for the top mackinaw plus daily awards and a kokanee division thanks to the 13-year effort to revive the kokanee fishery from the brink of collapse. Derby is shortened to nine days this year.
The buzz: The club is raising money to reintroduce pure-strain Gerrard rainbows to the lake.
Info: (509) 209-3608; email: rmilliken2004 @yahoo.com.
Williams Lake Trout Derby, April 26th, with open and youth divisions, based from the public launch site, sponsored by Eastern Washington University Sportsman’s Club. Entry: $10.
The buzz: Bass anglers at EWU are trying to recruit from the ranks of trout anglers. First place receives a percentage of the entry fees collected. The second-place prize is a guided bass fishing trip on Badger or Clear lake.
Info: NickTBarr@hotmail.com, (360) 485-9462.
Pikeminnow Rewards, May 1-Sept. 30 on the Snake and Columbia rivers, paying $4-8 for each fish caught and turned in to check stations, plus tagged fish worth up to $500.
The buzz: Some sport fishing anglers are making a living off this fishery, with several earning more than $60,000 each during the five-month season.
Lake Trout Reward on Lake Pend Oreille continues to offer a $15 bounty for each head of a mackinaw turned into collection stations.
The buzz: Macks are getting harder to catch as numbers are curtailed.
Info: (208) 769-1414.
Two Rivers Resort Derbies include four fishing contests this year at Lake Roosevelt:
• May 17-18 – Spring Trout Derby (new date).
• June 7-8 – Walleye Derby.
• June 14-15 – Bass Derby.
• Aug. 23-24 – Fall Derby.
The buzz: The spring tournament was rescheduled because of the current deep drawdown of Lake Roosevelt. The May 17-18 event will be the first good angling test of how many big fish were flushed out of the reservoir.
Info: Dan Kiefer, (509) 215-0202 or 722-4029.
Shriner’s Fishing Derby, May 18, based out of Klink’s Williams Lake Resort south of Cheney is a well-run fundraiser for the Shriner’s Hospital for children.
The buzz: Although the state stocks the lake with trout each year, Klink’s seeds the waters with an addtional 2,500 catchable-size trout just before the derby. Participants are going to catch fish!
Info: Klink’s Williams Lake Resort, (509) 235-2391.
PikePalooza, May 30-June 1, on the Pend Oreille River downstream from Newport, targets northern pike with a variety of ways to $4,000 in cash and prizes. Entry is free but pre-registration required. Sponsored by the Kalispel Tribe.
The buzz: Some anglers pooh-pooh this tournament because the tribe has been using gillnets in a program to remove pike from Box Canyon Reservoir, but that just leaves less competition for those who choose to participate and bring home cash. One angler caught a tagged fish worth $1,000 last year.