Ray Ursel holds up his prizewinning 37.7 lb chinook salmon at Salmon Fest on Monday

Ray Ursel holds up his prizewinning 37.7 lb chinook salmon at Salmon Fest on Monday

Ray Ursel wins Salmon Fest

Alberni native Ray Ursel brings in the big one at Salmon Fest.

Port Alberni native Ray Ursel took home the top prize at the 2014 Salmon Fest this past weekend with a 37.7lb chinook.

“He fought good, made a good run right at the beginning, had a good netting job on my partner there and fought him for about 20 minutes,” Ursel said.

The 37.7-pounder was the third fish that he caught during the festival but it proved to be the best, standing its ground for Saturday, Sunday and Monday.He caught the fish out at Whittlestone, just south of Bamfield with a Rhys Davis Teaser Head lure using anchovies for bait. At 37.7 lbs, his catch was over 20 lbs better than 2013 winner Sterling Robinson’s 17.1 lb coho at that year’s coho-only derby and he’ll walk away with an increased prize of $15,000 to show for it. Ursel will split it three ways between himself and his fishing partners Brent Rose and Bob McVie.

While the 37.7 lb winner meant that Port Alberni Salmon Festival Society president Dan Washington didn’t get the 43-pounder he was hoping for to celebrate the 43rd annual event, he was still pleased with the turnout; 2014 had roughly 2,000 entries, about twice what it was in 2013 and an average fish weight of 11.5 lbs, almost double that of 2013 when the average was 6.87 lbs. The total number of fish was lower this year however, with 1346 compared to 2013’s 1364.

Ursel was Saturday’s first place winner, followed by Dennis Granneman with 27 lbs in second and 2009 derby winner Cory Jones at 26.9 lbs in third.

Sunday’s winners were Leon Joseph Kossaber in first place at 25.9 lbs, Henry Clement in second also at 25.9lbs due to weighing in second and Wayne Salikin in third place. Monday’s winners were Bill Goorts in first place at 34 lbs, Dale Dame at 24.3 lbs and Sue Hale in third at 22.9 lbs. The Gary Rooke Memorial Award for the largest hatchery salmon went to Sally Watson, who brought in her 22.8-pounder on Sunday. Watson told festival goers that this was her first derby and “it was freaking awesome” and that she’d be back in 2015.

The Egon Matheson Memorial Award for volunteer of the weekend went to Hugh Love.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

twitter.com/alberninews

Just Posted

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
B.C. teen who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

Dry Creek Park will be closed all week as city parks crews remove hazardous trees and prepare the site for a new disc golf course. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni’s second disc golf course on the way at Dry Creek Park

Dry Creek Park will be closed for development for a week beginning June 21

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

Bernadette Jordan addresses the media following a swearing in ceremony at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on January 14, 2019. Jordan says the government will provide $2 million to allow First Nations to continue to strengthen the marine safety system across Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
First Nations receive federal funds to purchase marine rescue boats

Quatsino, Heiltsuk, and Kitasoo First Nation’s among eight across Canada to receive funding

A blood drive in support of 1-year-old Rielynn Gormley of Agassiz is scheduled for Monday, June 28 at Tzeachten First Nation Community Hall in Chilliwack. Rielynn lives with type 3 von Willebrand disease, which makes it difficult for her to stop bleeding. (Screenshot/Canadian Blood Services)
Upcoming blood drive in honour of Fraser Valley toddler with rare blood condition

The Gormley family has organized a blood drive in Chilliwack on June 28

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

One Reconciliation Pole and two Welcome Figures were unveiled during a ceremony in honour of truth and reconciliation on National Peoples Indigenous Day at the Vancouver School District in Vancouver, B.C., on Friday, June 21, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Horgan marks Indigenous Peoples Day by urging recognition of systemic racism

National Indigenous Peoples Day has been marked in Canada since 1996

Most Read