Free fishing weekend is almost here and Lake Michigamme is hosting a competition to ring in the occasion.
The 3rd Annual Rock Bass Tournament will drop anchor Saturday morning for a full day of outdoor fun. The event not only offers cash prizes for outstanding catches, but also helps maintain the lake’s ecosystem.
“Several years ago, at our annual meeting, our guest speaker was a biologist from the Department of Natural Resources. He recommended that to improve our fisheries in lake, we should try to get rid of some of the rock bass. So after a few years, we thought of doing something about it and we started [this tournament] three years ago. Within the last two years I’m sure we’ve taken about 1,500 rock bass out of this lake, maybe even more,” explained John Blanck, a member of the Board of Directors for the Lake Michigamme Association for the past 20 years.
Fishermen will only be allowed to reel in a maximum of 25 fish. The heaviest haul will receive $300, while 2nd and 3rd places will receive $100 and $50 respectively.
Participants can fish individually or work together as a team.
The biggest bass caught will net $150 while the smallest bass will fetch $50. Anglers of all ages and skill levels are encouraged to enter the event for $5 while children 12 years and under are able to take part for free.
The tournament will span three sites. The Van Riper State Park Camp Host Site will offer pre-registration from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday night for those who want to camp out the night before. Registration will be available starting at 7:30 a.m. at the Michigamme Park Pavilion and the Brown Road Access Site both of which offer camping accommodations.
Once registered, competitors can take to the water as early as possible before reconvening at the Michigamme Park Pavilion at 1 p.m. for a free hotdog lunch and awards presentation.