Monday, July 9, 2012

Eastslope Kayak Fishing Classic RECAP by Stephen Laurie

The 2nd annual Eastslope Kayak Fishing Classic is now officially in the books. This year’s event was a great success seeing growth of more than double the number of registered participants from last year. The last minute change of location due to the oil spill on Gleniffer Lake just two weeks in advance of the tournament definitely posed some challenges but with the help of Alberta Parks an alternate location, Phyllis Lake, was found, approved and ultimately turned out to be a great spot for the tourney. The BBQ social prior to the Captains meeting on Friday proved to be one of the highlights of the weekend with plenty of attendees who enjoyed meeting each other and talking shop.

Captains Meeting
BBQ Social

Quite a few of the participants showed up as early as Thursday to pre fish and camp at the Lake making for great company and a nice extended weekend spent with Kayak Anglers from all over Alberta. The anglers hit the water at 6 am tournament day and were welcomed by almost nonstop rain but toughed it out which led to some pretty impressive overall numbers coming in at judging time. Quite a few of the participants limited out with all 25 fish caught including 5 White Sucker which in the end turned out to be the difference that separated the top 4 to 5 anglers from the pack.

On the water

The 2012 Eastlope Kayak Fishing Classic saw repeat winners with brothers Jay and Matt Maciejewsky, both in Jackson Coosa’s, again claiming 1st and 2nd place respectfully and saw them go home with some of the top prizes including A Kokatat T3 Super Angler Dry Suit, Werner Paddles and gear from Yak Attack and Settles Bridge Supply House. First time tournament participant Jim Kind’s third place finish showed that the hours he spent pre fishing were not wasted and earned him a top notch Fly Fishing outfit from Amundson, Exoficio, and Buff Headwear. 

Parking

With the generous donations from our sponsors all our participants were able to leave with top quality prizes and gear from some of the best companies in the kayak angling world. The most exciting moment of the awards ceremony was the highly anticipated draw for a Jackson Kayak Cuda ,a top of the line kayak fishing machine, kindly donated by Jackson Kayak one of our featured sponsors which was won by Wayne Westbury an avid pontoon fisherman who may now be a convert to the world of kayak fishing. With promises from participants to return and with the growing interest in kayak fishing next year’s event is sure to see increased growth and be bigger and better yet again. I’m already working on plans for next year and can’t wait to see both familiar and new faces . 

Wayne Westbury winner of the Jackson Kayak Cuda with event director, Stephen Laurie

A special thanks to all of our sponsors for their genorous contributions and helping to promote the growth of kayak fishing.  

Jackson Kayak, Kokatat, Werner, Settles Bridge Supply House, Undercurrents,Yak Attack, Kayak Angler Magazine, Jackfish Lures, The Fishing Butler, The Fish Grip, Exofficio, Buff Headwear, Pure Fishing, Amundson ,Cabela’s, Glenbow Flyfishing, The World Fishing Network, Kayalu, The Bow Habitat Station, Valhalla Pure Outfitters, Scotty, Tie Boss, Kayak Fishing Supplies, Campers Village and Greenfish. 

Green River, UT

Green River, UT
Photo: Shawna Franklin