OLYMPIC PENINSULA SALMON Derby tickets are on sale now online at www.gardinersalmonderby.org, or at area merchants beginning Jan. 5.
Set Friday through Sunday, March 9-11, the derby offers a $10,000 first prize, $2,000 for second and $1,000 for third. A host of other cash prizes, fishing gear and gas cards also are up for grabs.
Online tickets are $42.50 with service fees factored in. Tickets are good for all three days.
This winter blackmouth classic is part of the Northwest Marine Trade Association Northwest Salmon Derby Series and a grand prize boat will again be awarded to one lucky winner.
Ticket holders for the Olympic Peninsula Salmon Derby are automatically entered into the boat drawing which will be held in the fall of 2018.
And to call it a boat drawing is to sell the prize short.
The boat is a Hewescraft 220 OceanPro valued at $85,000 and powered with Honda 250 and 9.9 horsepower motors. It comes on an EZ Loader tandem axle galvanized trailer fully rigged with Scotty High-Performance Downriggers, Raymarine electronics, and a Dual Electronics stereo.
Hansville’s Tony Beam won the 2017 Olympic Peninsula Salmon Derby, landing a 15.25-pound hatchery chinook on the first day of the derby.
Hand crabbing tides
Crabbing may not be at its best during this late season, but Quilcene’s Ward Norden, a former fisheries biologist and owner of Snapper Tackle Co., said there is potential for hand crabbing this weekend.
“The next fair hand crabbing tides will be on the 17th and 18th, with the best of the winter being on Dec. 30 and New Years Eve before crabbing is closed on New Years Day,” Norden said.
“We try to get out an hour before low tide to hopefully get the Dungies before they dig themselves out of sight into the sand and gravel. The crabs are wonderful eating this time of year.”
Ridge an option
Hurricane Ridge opened for its 60th season of winter sports activities last weekend with sunny skies, if not a massive amount of fresh powder.
This weekend’s forecast calls for possible accumulation of “2 to 4 inches” Saturday, with some rain likely to fall Sunday. More snowfall is expected next week as the area moves into a wetter weather pattern.
The Ridge’s website at https://hurricaneridge.com has the following annoucement:
“We are currently open with two tows, the ‘Bunny’ and the ‘Intermediate’ serving beginner and intermediate terrain as well as access to backcountry terrain off of Sunrise Ridge. Tubing, Terrain Park and the POMA lift are closed until we receive more snow.”
Fourth- and fifth-graders can ski free at Hurricane Ridge all season.
Parents and guardians just need to bring proof of enrollment in fourth or fifth grade to the ridge’s ticket window to receive free admission. Home-schooled kids can provide proof of age to receive the benefit which is provided by the Hurricane Ridge Education Foundation.
Sports reporter/columnist Michael Carman can be contacted at 360-417-3525 or [email protected]