Newbie takes second place in salmon derby

Ladies already leading days before women’s derby


Photo courtesy Valdez Fish Derbies

Candace Prossner of Royal Oaks, Maryland won the weekly first prize and is in second place overall in the silver salmon derby with this 16.02 pound coho she caught August 4, from the Alaskai.

Visitor Candace Prossner of Royal Oaks, Maryland says she’d never been fishing before she dropped a line in Valdez. By, Saturday, August 4, she’d reeled in a nice 16.02 pound silver salmon – which earned her the second place spot in the Silver Salmon Derby.

When Prossner arrived in Valdez, she went out for the first time Friday and caught a few. But it wasn’t until Saturday that beginners luck hit hard and she reeled in her 16.02 pounder that won her the daily first place prize and a spot on the overall leader board.

It isn’t surprising, considering that women have been consistently dominating the Silver Salmon Derby so far this year. Diana Doodchenko of Canada is leading the silver derby with a17.88 pound silver she caught July 25. Nicole Schutz of Woodbury, Minnesota was in second place before Prossner beat out her 15.52 pounder over the weekend.

Women are likely to maintain that edge over male counterparts in the coming days.

Fisherwomen from near and far have been gearing up for this Saturday’s Women’s Silver Salmon Derby. Last year, 93-year-old Lenore Groundwater of Green Valley, Arizona was crowned Queen of the Silver Salmon Sisterhood when she reeled in a 16.58 pound coho. She also ended up winning second place overall for the season – and took home $5,000 for her efforts. Not bad for a day of fishing in Valdez.

The Women’s Derby is a one-day tournament and prizes will be awarded to the women catching the top 50 fish. Register now through the morning of Saturday, August 11, at Prospector Outfitters on Galena St.

More information is also available at .

Ready to go for the gold in the Silver Derby?

If so, you’d better start baiting your hooks. According to fish derby records, between 1976 and 2011four silvers in the 16 pound range that have ended up winning the top prize for the season. There are nine fish in the 17 pound range on that list, eight in the 18 pound range, eight in the 19 pound range, only three in the 20 pound range, one in the twenty-one pound range and two weighing in at exactly 22.14 each.

While the silver salmon are causing a lot of excitement, the Valdez Halibut Derby is still in full swing.

The standings remain the same in the Valdez Halibut Derby, with Marvin Knapp of Gravois Mills, Missouri in the lead with a 227.6 pound halibut caught July 26 from the Dan Orion. Scott Jumgblom of Ione, Washington is in second place with a 205 pound flatfish caught July 26, from the Go Get Her. Norman Darling of North Pole is holding firm in third place with a 202.3 pound halibut caught July 21, from the Dawn Treader.

The silver and halibut derbies end September 2. At the end of the season, anglers that hold a halibut or silver derby ticket that haul in the largest fish will win a grand prize of $15,000. Second place prizes of $5,000 and third place earns $2,000 for each derby. Anglers in each derby can also win weekly first and second place prizes. The Valdez Fish Derbies also awards a 4x4 truck to one lucky participant of the derby, as every $10 spent on a ticket also enters the holder into a drawing to win the truck - regardless of whether anglers catch a fish or not. A season ticket is good for five entries. Organizers say this year will be extra special as Seekins Ford in Fairbanks and the Valdez Fish Derbies will be giving away a 2012 F-150 truck.

Photo courtesy Valdez Fish Derbies

Lenore Groundwater was age 93 when she won the Women’s Silver Salmon Derby for the 2011 season.


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