Salmon hard to find during festival tournament

Matt DeYoung • Sep 18, 2017 at 7:00 PM

The 45 boats competing in the 2017 Salmon Festival Big Fish Contest had a difficult time finding salmon Sunday morning. 

In fact, of the 22 biggest fish weighed in, only seven were salmon — five chinook and two coho. 

It was a 16.25-pound lake trout that took the “big fish” honors for the event. That fish was weighed in by Bob Brown aboard 2nd Sucks.

Second place went to Jeremy Barber, fishing aboard In U Endo. He weighed in a 14.8-pound laker. 

The tournament paid out cash prizes to the five biggest fish, and all five were lake trout. 

The biggest salmon was a 11.6-pound chinook caught by Dana Bonney aboard Danel.

“Fishing was very difficult and the reports we heard were that the top boats went north or south of Grand Haven,” said tournament organizer Mary Jane Belter of the Grand Haven Steelheaders. 

“We are grateful to the 45 fishermen who registered in the contest and to our contest sponsors,” Belter added. “Through their support of the Grand Haven Steelheaders, we are able to fund our website and webcam at www.ghsteelheaders.com, our net pen project, scholarships to the MSU 4-H Summer Natural Resource Camp, Port Sheldon weather/wave buoy, Salmon in the Classroom, books and other printed material for the Loutit District Library and the Spring Lake District Library, books for the Grand Haven Area Public Schools and Spring Lake Public Schools, Sportsman for Youth Day participation, Grand Haven Salmon Festival KidZone participation, and a spring program with a speaker that’s open to the public.”

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