Ice Fishing Tournament featured in winter carnival

The Duck Mountain Provincial Park (DMPP) celebrated its 2020 Winter Carnival this past Saturday, and new for this year was an ice fishing tournament.

The goal was to offer area fishermen the opportunity to participate in a fun ice fishing tournament while adding another dimension of winter fun to the growing Winter Carnival, according to a release.  

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Registration took place during the pancake breakfast hosted by the Madge Lake Bible Camp and sponsored by the Duck Mountain Coffee Roasting Company. After registration, participants headed down to the tournament area by the Jubilee Boat Launch, notifying event staff where they were going to set up, drill their holes and prepare for the noon start time.

The first hole was $40, with a second hole available for an additional $20. There were prizes for the first fish, the largest fish, and the largest pike, walleye, and perch.

IOMPresents was the tournament host, and sponsors included P&J Plumbing & Heating, Kamsack’s Home Hardware, OMG’s Candy, Madge Lake Developments, Prairie Eye Guiding, Sas-Kam Sportsman, Dr Bob’s Marine Clinic, KREG’s/OK Tire, Kamsack Petro-Canada, Kamsack Liquor Store, Duck Mountain Motel, Iron Grill Steakhouse, and Innovative Outdoorsman Marketing.

“Unfortunately, current social concerns kept participation low this year, and only five anglers dropped nine lines during the event,” said James Turner of IOMPresents and tournament director. “While fish were seen through the holes and on a camera set up in the judging tent, none of the anglers were successful in catching any fish within tournament hours. A pike estimated to weigh around 11 pounds was caught 10 minutes after the tournament ended by the event judges just as they were packing up! 

“In the interest of fairness, the tournament organizers decided to hold a draw for the gift packages, with each angler receiving one of the gift packs,” he said.

Those unable to claim their prizes during awards presented during the perogy supper at St Michael’s Bible Camp will have them sent out by mail.

Turner said that while he was disappointed at the low participation this year, he understood that several factors played a part in that result, including the fact that this was the first time the tournament ran.

“I believe the tournament will grow in the years to come, and I am able to comment from experience,” he concluded. Turner is the tournament director for the Madge Lake Walleye Cup (MLWC), which runs the third weekend of September each year in DMPP.  The MLWC has grown every year since its inception in 2017.