Sarah Hutton shows off the 6.36kg salmon she pulled from
Otago Harbour on Saturday to win the Otago salmon fishing
competition held at the weekend. Photo by Jane Dawber.
Even bad conditions could not keep 220 hardy salmon
fishers away from Otago Harbour over the weekend.
Organisers of the annual Otago Salmon Fishing Competition
were toasting the event's growing popularity yesterday, after
about 220 anglers braved rough conditions to haul in 43
salmon over two days.
The winning catch, of a 6.36kg specimen, was made by Dunedin
woman Sarah Hutton (23), who fishedfrom a boat in the upper
harbour, near the Water of Leith, on Saturday, the first day
of the competition.
Miss Hutton said she had been fishing all her life but had
not won a competition, so was feeling "pretty good" when
confirmed as the winner at 4pm yesterday.
Her catch had already been divided up, some cut into steaks
and the rest smoked, but would be traded for some lamb, she
Event organiser Wayne Olsen - the chairman of the New Zealand
Salmon Anglers' Association Otago branch - said conditions
over the weekend had been "terrible", but the number of fish
caught was "a good return".
"It's probably the best for about five years, in spite of the
weather," he said.
The bad weather had probably discouraged some people from
entering the competition, but "the hardy ones will do it, no
Five salmon weighing more than 6kg had been caught, and Miss
Hutton's catch was nearly beaten by one that got away. A
large specimen estimated at 7kg-8kg "would have cleaned
everyone out" but managed to wriggle off the line, Mr Olsen
"But hey, that's fishing," he said.