BIG BEAR LAKE, Calif./ June 8, 2011 – The tagged trout worth $50,000 for Big Bear Lake’s Annual Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby was indeed caught last year. The only catch however (no pun intended) is the fish was caught one month later on July 4, 2010, after the event had expired June 6, 2010. Unfortunately Ash Buchan of Sierra Madre, the fisherman who caught the fish, was one month too late to collect the cash. The official rules state the $50,000 tagged trout must be caught during official dates and times of the Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby, and presented to the tournament director with tag attached for claim verification.
“The tag was attached to the dorsal fin, and it reminded me of what you’d see on a shirt in a department store. It was a florescent colored, nylon tag with numbers on it. Unfortunately I was a month too late,” said Ash Buchan “Right of way I wanted to know what the tag represented. So I took it to Big Bear Marina, and the owner Alan Sharp verified the number. He said, ‘Yep, that’s it! That’s the tagged trout that was worth $50,000.’ He really emphasized the word ‘was’.”
Buchan will enter the 3rd Annual Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby for the first time. He plans to fish the lake like he always does from shore near Windy Point where he consistently catches fish. This year of course, Buchan hopes to catch the tagged trout worth $50,000 during the actual event so he can claim the big money this time around.
“I appreciate the free entry and an opportunity to win the big prize this year. What are the odds that the same guy will catch the $50,000 fish? I know if I catch it they will certainly put me under a lie detector for validity,” added Buchan. “I just wish the tournament was on July 4th or July 5th like when I caught the tagged trout last year. Something good always happens to me on or around July 5th, which is the same day my mom passed away five years ago.”
On June 11 and 12 Big Bear Lake’s Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby gives anglers the chance to catch a tagged trout worth $50,000. There are a total of ten tagged trout at the Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby including one particular fish worth the big bucks. The angler who bags the grand prize tagged trout will win $50,000.
Prizes for the other nine tagged trout are good for Big Bear lodging and adventure packages. In addition to tagged fish, anglers who catch the largest fish (by weight) in four different classes will be awarded prizes too. The four classes are adult male/female and child male/female (under age 16). A bonus prize of $500 is awarded to the overall largest trout (by weight) caught on Berkley PowerBait, sponsored by Berkley “Catch More Fish!”
Free entry is given to Fishin’ for 50K participants who stay at least one night at a Big Bear Lake Resort Association lodge from June 10 to June 12. The amount of free entries is based on lodging occupancy per reservation. Up to four free entries is also given to participants who rent a pontoon boat on either day of the Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby at a participating marina in Big Bear Lake.
An awards ceremony takes place Sunday, June 12 at 3 p.m. in the Big Bear Visitor Center parking lot located at 630 Bartlett Road (in the Village). The awards ceremony includes a general raffle with thousands of dollars worth of fishing gear including Rapala and Luhr Jensen lures, Phlueger and Shakespeare rod & reel combos and Flambeau tackle boxes. Tagged fish that have not been redeemed, with the exception of the tagged fish for $50,000 grand prize, will be donated to the general raffle.
This year anglers can win a brand new Cobra fishing kayak as part of a separate raffle to raise funds for Big Bear Municipal Water District’s fishery programs. Also, merchandise will be available for purchase with all proceeds going toward the fishery programs in Big Bear Lake.
Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby will be held Saturday, June 11 and Sunday, June 12 from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day. Entry is $40 for adults and $25 for participants under age 16. Entries are limited to the first 750 registered anglers. Each contestant receives a free jar of Berkley PowerBait and a wristband that provides discounts at participating Big Bear restaurants, shops and specialty services