Anglers will compete for biggest fish at tournament | SteamboatToday.com

Anglers will compete for biggest fish at tournament

Russell Cook drills a hole in the Stagecoach Reservoir ice during the 2014 Steamboat Great Outdoors Ice Fishing Tournament. This year's tournament will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Jan. 4.

— Calling all anglers.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife will host the fourth annual Steamboat Great Outdoors Ice Fishing Tournament from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Jan. 4 at Stagecoach State Park.

“I can’t think of a better way to enjoy winter than with some fishing and some good, old-fashioned competition,” Park Manager Craig Preston said in a news release. “People have a great time, and they catch some really big fish. Plus, it’s for a great cause, and you can’t beat that.”

Registration for adults is $30 (cash only), and they will be competing for cash prizes. Awards will be given to the first- through fifth-place finishers with the first-place finisher taking home 35 percent of the purse.

Registration is free for youths ages 17 and younger. They will be competing for non-cash prizes.

The tournament is capped at the first 200 adults and 50 youth anglers, and registration is the day of the event between 7 and 8:45 a.m. at the Stagecoach State Park Marina Store.

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Anglers will begin drilling holes in the ice when the horn blows at 9 a.m. At the end of the day, they can turn in two trout. Winners will be determined by the longest combined length.

Participants will be required to harvest walleye and pike fish caught during the tournament. The invasive fish feed on trout stocked by Parks and Wildlife.

“Information gathered from collection of walleye and pike at this tournament will be useful in future management practices and strategies at Stagecoach,” the rules state.

Participants will be required to have a parks pass, and anyone older than 15 needs to have a fishing license.

A portion of the event’s proceeds will be donated to the Oak Creek Fire Corps, a program that allows community members to offer their time and skills to the fire department in a non-emergency capacity.

For complete tournament rules and information, visit http://www.steamboatgreatoutdoors.com.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland