Blue Knuckle winner first time fisherwoman

For her first fish ever caught, Blue Knuckle Derby winner Ami Johnson took home prize money of more than $1000 on Sunday.

  • Jan. 21, 2015 1:00 p.m.

Trisha Shanks

Arrow Lakes News

For her first fish ever caught, Blue Knuckle Derby winner Ami Johnson took home prize money of more than $1000 on Sunday. The Dolly weighed in at 13 lb. Second prize of over $600 went to Ken Wanstall with another Dolly at 12 lbs and third place for $400 with a third Dolly weighing 11.4 lb went to Mike Smith. The slogan for the mid-winter derby is “Are You Tough Enough?” It turns out Ami was.

105 people were entered in the fourth annual Gord Roberts Memorial Blue Knuckle Derby. Gord’s widow Tracy Roberts was very pleased with the number. She organizes the derby from her home in Quesnel with the help of friends and family in Nakusp.

Participant Art Olson said, “What an excellent fishing derby. It brings everyone together.”

His father, fishing guide Glenn Olson said, “If only that boat ramp BC Hydro put in was able to be used. The old wooden one we had could be used twelve months a year but this one is no good. A load of gravel would probably fix the problem.”

It’s no secret that anyone trying to get in the water in Nakusp is disappointed with the launch built by BC Hydro in 2013. Thanks to the generosity of local business Interfor for the loan of their 150 foot wharf and to Isaque and Carla Vieira from Arrow Lakes Ready Mix for water access, the derby was able to go on. For the second year in a row, the public launch was too high for the low water levels.

“What a good time, though,” Ray Hascarl said. “It’s definitely something this community needs. It is a great family event.”


The derby took place over two days, and encompassed a big dance at the Legion with local entertainment 23 North. Funds raised will go to a scholarship fund in Gord Roberts’ name.

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