Outdoors

West Valley sophomore tops 186 Outdoor Writing Contest entries

A story by Kyle Hansen, a sophomore at West Valley High School, has been judged the best of 186 entries to win The Spokesman-Review’s 2011 Outdoor Writing Contest for high school students.

In “Frozen Turkey,” Hansen details the highs and lows of pursuing wild gobblers in a “dream hunt” with his dad.

Runners-up in the 25th annual contest:

“Successful Hunt,” by Moscow High School sophomore Jasper Wallen, follows two boys and a dad as they stalk a perfect elk hunt without firing a shot.

“Pecking Order,” by Gonzaga Prep sophomore Alexsandra “Sasha” Logan, details the education her family endured by volunteering to raise a crop of pheasant chicks.

“Dueling Predators,” by Gavin Pointer, a junior at Lakeland High School in Rathdrum, brings readers to the confluence of two savvy hunters.

Hansen will receive $50 for first place. Each of the runners-up will get $30. The four finalists will be entered in the Outdoor Writers Association of America National Scholastic Writing Contest, which is open to any outdoor writing published in 2011 by junior high or high school students.

National winners, who can earn up to $200, will be announced next spring.

In 24 years, 39 finalists from The Spokesman-Review contest have gone on to win national awards.

This year’s entries were judged by newspaper Outdoors editor Rich Landers, who says the task is always an enlightening, often humorous and sometimes even a moving experience.

He cites one of this year’s more memorable entries by Elizabeth Johnston of North Central High School, who made a case for renaming the campground BIFFY (Bathroom in Forest for You) to HIFFY – Hell in Forest for You.

The winning contest entry once again has been illustrated by Spokane Valley artist Dale Hamilton, a graduate of Central Valley High School.

The newspaper contest is announced in the fall.



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