Registration is open for anglers interested in participating in Big Bear Lake’s "Fishin' for $50K Trout Derby." The third annual tournament, scheduled Saturday and Sunday, June 11-12, from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m., offers the chance for a lucky angler who catches the grand-prize tagged trout to net $50,000 (the tags will look similar to that in the photo above, from the inaugural tournament, though will be a different color to thwart possible cheating).
"We're calling all bounty hunters, or in this case bounty anglers, to come up to Big Bear to catch a tagged trout worth $50,000," said Big Bear Lake Resort Assn. Chief Executive Rick Shoup. "The grand prize is no pocket change."
There will be a total of 10 tagged trout planted, including the one particular fish worth the top prize. Prizes for the other nine fish include Big Bear lodging and adventure packages.
In addition to the tagged trout, anglers who catch the largest fish by weight in four classes -- adult male, adult female, male child younger than 16 and female child younger than 16 -- will be awarded prizes. There will also be a bonus prize of $500 awarded to the overall largest trout by weight caught using Berkley PowerBait.
The entry fee is $40 for adults and $25 for children under 16. The tournament is limited to the first 750 registrants.
Free entry will be given to those who stay at least one night June 10-12 at a participating Big Bear Lake Resort Assn. lodge, and to anglers who rent a pontoon boat at a participating marina in Big Bear Lake the weekend of the tournament.
An awards ceremony will take place June 12 at 3 p.m. in the Big Bear Visitor Center parking lot. The ceremony will include a raffle, with thousands of dollars' worth of fishing gear, bait and tackle from national manufacturers up for grabs. Prizes for tagged fish that have not been redeemed, with the exception of the $50,000 grand prize tagged fish, will be donated to the raffle.
-- Kelly Burgess
Photo: A tagged trout similar to this could be worth $50,000. Credit: Dan McKernan / Big Bear Lake Resort Assn.