If you can’t wait until the summer runs of salmon return to Alaska, head for Homer and wet your hook in the Homer Winter King Salmon Tournament in mid-March.
The one-day tournament awards tens of thousands of dollars in prize money and merchandise for the largest fish caught within the confines of Kachemak Bay.
There are additional opportunities for side bets, with prizes offered every hour of the tournament. After the fishing lines are pulled from the water join the festivities at the weigh-in, at Coal Point on the Homer Spit. There will be music, food, beer and big fish.
Last year temperatures dipped into the 20s and a 25-knot wind made for choppy going, but that didn’t dampen the enthusiasm for the event; Nearly 500 boats and 1,500 anglers participated, including about 20 kayaks.
Eric Holland of Homer won last year’s tournament, taking in $31,668 for his 26.45-pound king.
This year the tournament is scheduled for March 18. Early registration opens on March 1. For more information visit, www.homeralaska.org/winter-king-salmon-tournament.html