Cowichan Lake residents greeted Saturday morning’s snow with mixed emotions but those most annoyed by the sight of the white stuff were the eager anglers who were ready to head out for the annual Frostbite Fishing Derby.
Run by the Lake Cowichan Legion, this is always a popular event, and as its name shows, no one is expecting a short-sleeve kind of day, but participants do like decent fishing weather.
And the fish weren’t biting early, either. It wasn’t until afternoon that conditions started to change.
When the Gazette saw the winner Rick Harris, and his buddy, Wayne Winters, coming out of the Legion about 4:45 p.m. following their weigh-in, they were hopeful that Harris had a contender with his big 2.60 lb cutthroat trout. Winters had a good fish, too, and at 2.17 lb it was good enough for fourth place.
But the big deal, they said, was that they didn’t get anything until late in the day.
“Then we got these three, one right after the other,” Harris said.
The Legion’s Sam Jones agreed.
“We had 67 people registered and 21 fish weighed in, but nobody was coming in until right at the last minute,” she said. “The fish just weren’t biting.”
Harris picked up $250 for the win, while Jake Wolters took home $150 for his second place fish weighing 2.37 lbs.
Close behind and winning $100 was Rob White with a 2.32 lb fish.
Winters earned himself $75 with his fourth place finish and Dustin Coulombe took fifth and $50 with his catch, which weighed 2.06 lb.