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Annual Winter King Salmon Tournament
23rd Annual Winter King Salmon Tournament is in the record book!
2016 Homer Winter King Salmon Tournament Record Breaking Year
Congratulations to our 2016 Winter King Tournament Champion - Eric Holland of Homer, AK winning $31,668 with a 26.45 lb King
Photo courtesy of Jim Lavrakas / Far North Photography
From left to right, Colt Belmonte, third place; Kelly Grose, second place, and Eric Holland, the winner all from Homer.
The 23rd Annual Homer Winter King Tournament on Saturday, March 19th was a great success. This year's Tournament broke the previous record of 1,321 anglers in 2015 with 1,508 anglers. Congratulations to our 2016 Winter King Tournament Champion Eric Holland of Homer, winning $31,668 with a 26.45 lb King. In 2015 Mike Olsen of Kodiak, AK won $27,762 with a 30.4 lb King.
Saturday's sunny weather contributed to the strong turnout with 448 boats, including 20 kayaks, and one fisherman from shore using a bait launcher. The snowflakes held out until the Tournament ended just before 6:30 pm. The morning started out with a bang with fish caught within 10 minutes of the "line-in" announcement at 9 am. The previous record of 590 fish landed in 2015, compared to 448 this year, still stands, but the number of boats entered increased from 386 in 2015 to 448 this year.
There has been a steady increase in participation in the Tournament. For instance, in 2014 there were 270 boats, 202 fish landed and 906 anglers. The last two years the unseasonably warm weather and lots of fish in the Bay have brought more and more people out to fish. The payout has also increased for the top ten winners going from $67,950 in 2014 to this year's payout in cash prizes of $113,100.
The eleventh through twentieth place winners shared in merchandise worth over $10,000. The Boat Side Bet payout totaled $60,112.50 and Skunk Bets $6,487.50, with a total payout in all categories over $180,250.
A special part of the tournament is the merchandise prize give-away that takes place every ten minutes over the VHF radio. Every angler in the tournament is automatically entered into this random drawing. Merchandise prizes were generously donated by a hundred businesses.
Thanks to all our participants, volunteers and supporters that made this the best year ever!!
Experience what it is like to participate in the Winter King Salmon Tournament and win first place. Big thanks to Mike Olsen of Kodiak, winner of the 2015 Winter King Salmon Tournament for sharing his video.