2012 Montana Circuit Tournament Results
Walleye Circuit - Final
Fort Peck Circuit - Final
Fall Classic Tournament Results
The Below article was written by Jacques Rutten, of Lewistown's
Argus News. Thanks guys!
As the sun rose over Fort Peck Lake last Saturday, 84 fishermen eagerly awaited the start of the Fall Classic Walleye Tournament.
Men and women, young and old had come from all directions – Wyoming, California, North Dakota and all parts of Montana. They were there for the camaraderie, the chance to win some major prize money, and the legendary fishing of Fort Peck Lake.
“It's a great fishery that is getting better all the time,” said Travis Scott of Lewistown, who coordinated this year's tournament and is a past Montana Angler of the Year winner. “We fished for eight days last week and averaged over 40 northerns a day, from 18 pounds down to two. Then you throw in the walleye, crappie, perch, catfish, drum, sauger, bass … you can have a hay-day out there, and that's the big attraction for a lot of people.”
Although there is a wide variety of fish to be caught, walleye is the primary focus at the Fall Classic, and this year there was no shortage. On Sunday, the five biggest fish of the winning team each averaged right around 6 pounds with the largest tipping the scale at just over eight and a half pounds.
Remote location presents unique challenges
For the second straight year, the Fall Classic was headquartered out of Crooked Creek Recreation Area on the far west end of Fort Peck Lake. Surrounded by the rugged, elk-rich Missouri River Breaks, the recreation area is accessible through either Roy or Winnett, and whichever way you go, there is somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 miles of gravel roads to pass over before you reach Fort Peck.
The local tournament began at Crooked Creek back in the 1990s. It was held successfully for a few years before low water forced organizers to move the tournament to the east end of the lake. When lake levels began rising a few years ago, it was moved back closer to its home, to Fourchette Bay south of Malta, and then last year, finally, the tournament returned to where it all began.
Running a walleye tournament in a remote area like Crooked Creek is a major undertaking. With the nearest ice and gas 50 miles away, it takes months of planning, countless volunteer hours from Crooked Creek Chapter members, and plenty of help from the operators of the marina to make an event like the Fall Classic come together.
“We had 35 volunteers who did a phenomenal job,” said Scott. “Tammy and Don from Pourman's provided the food and Destry and Grant at the marina were outstanding. They had fuel and ice for us and the customer service was great.”
Scott also had praise for the people who ran the “Weigh Boats.” Because all of the fish caught during the Fall Classic are released back into the lake, several weigh boats are scattered throughout the tournament boundaries. Throughout the day, contestants will find a weigh boat where they have their fish measured, recorded and released. If any of the fish die before the contestant reaches a weigh boat, there is a penalty involved.
“We had six weigh boats, which is really unheard of in a tournament, but with our boundaries stretching 35 miles, we needed that many and they did a great job.
“Without that kind of crew and the great volunteers, you can't run a tournament in this type of location.”
The Tournament that almost wasn't
The two-day tournament was held on Saturday and Sunday under sunny skies and calm winds. But most of the contestants arrived several days early to “pre-fish” and in the days leading up to actual event, Mother Nature threw everything she had at them.
The Saturday before the tournament, Scott said a 70 miles per hour storm ripped through the campground, tearing down tents and scattering equipment. Then on Monday the lightning rolled in and the fires took off. He said on Tuesday they watched the entire U.L. Bend, located across the lake from Crooked Creek, burn in a 24-hour period. That afternoon the Chain Buttes fire began to threaten the entire tournament. At around 3 p.m., on Tuesday an evacuation notice was issued, ordering all campers to leave Crooked Creek.
After a few tense hours, Scott said firefighters were able to establish a fire line and the evacuation order was lifted that night. “They saved the day,” said Scott, adding that Dennis Crawford and Don Pyrah were among the firefighters helping out that day, who later came and helped run the tournament.
“Then on Friday we had torrential rainstorms, so we went from burning to raining to stable weather for the weekend. After it was all said and done, we got through it.”
In addition to the many volunteers, Scott also thanked the many local sponsors who made the tournament a success.
“We had phenomenal sponsorship throughout the community. Without that and the volunteers, it wouldn't work.”
And the winners are …
Between 2 and 3 p.m, on Sunday with the afternoon sun blazing down on the marina and the thermometer creeping into the 90s, the competitors began roaring back into the marina. Some had traveled more than 30 miles down the lake earlier that morning. When it was all said and done, Kenny Parsons and Doug Rohlf of Great Falls collected $2,200 for their two-day, 10-fish total of 45.3 pounds. Todd and Jon Koessl of Billings and Bozeman came in second with 37 pounds and earned a check of $1,500. They also earned big money for winning the big walleye contest on both days of the tournament. The top 11 teams earned prize money, and many others won special prizes for things like Biggest Northern (42 inches) and many other categories.
Locally, Travis Scott and his partner, Kennie Williams, were in fifth after the first day and on track to record another great finish. But they got into trouble Sunday morning when their engine failed when they were about 30 miles away from the marina. Their small kicker motor was still working but after doing the math, Scott realized they could not make it back to the starting line by the finishing time, and as tournament organizer, he was forced to disqualify himself and Williams.
“It was a horrible,” he admitted, “but the rules say you have to be able to return under your own power, and we would not have been able to do that in time.”
The top finishing local team was Dave and Randy Snyder who came in 13. Other local teams that competed included Mike Homberg or Lewistown and his partner Chris Mann of Riverton, Wyo; as well as Kevin and Terry Selph of Lewistown.
The Fall Classic marked the end of the tournament circuit in Montana, but organizers are already planning for next year.
Scott said they are always looking for more new people who would like to give tournament fishing a try, or come down and help out at next year's tournament.
If you would like to learn more about Walleyes Unlimited or fishing on the state walleye circuit, contact Travis Scott at 366-5603.
2012 - Hell Creek Tournament Results[08.01.2012]
Congratulations to everyone who fished the Hell Creek tournament! Below are some of the top finishers for this years contest.
1st - Norm Sillerud & JR Rasmasan
2nd - Levi Sugg & Kris Keller
3rd - Clyde Phipps & Brim Phipps
Adult/Child - Clyde Phipps & Brim Phipps
Mixed Couple - Tom Tubbs & Roxanne Tubbs
2012 - Broadwater Rod and Gun Results[08.01.2012]
Congratulations to all fisherman and women who participated in the 2012 tournament. This tournament is held at Goosebay on Canyon Ferry lake and is a great event! Below is a photo of Broadwater Rod & Gun Walleye Derby Winners Rebekah Larson and Kathy Peters with their boat captain and Tournament Director, Doug Breker.
2012 - Jordan Chapter - Hell Creek Results
It was a fantastic tournament! Saturday EVERY tournament fisherman brought in a 5 fish limit and only one team had less than 5 measurable walleye on Sunday. What a great year to be fishing Fort Peck! Below are your top 5 finishers, full results listed below.
1st - Norm Sillerud-JR Rasmasan - 53.34 lbs.
2nd - Levi Sugg-Kris Keller - 37.72 lbs.
3rd - Clyde Phipps-Brim Phipps - 30.44 lbs.
5th - Jimmy Weaver-Jerry Wiesbeck - 29.72 lbs.
5th - Casey Thomas-Marvin Loomis - 26.18 lbs.
2012 - Gov Cup Results
Write-up Pending. Here are the results - Click here for complete results!
2012 Canyon Ferry Festival Results
Day 2 of the 2012 Canyon Ferry Walleye Festival was
disappointing for some, but others had a great day. Overall it
was a tougher bite today with a total of 368 walleyes being
caught weighing a total of 541.4 pounds and a 1.47 pound
average. Thirty three of the teams were still able to scratch
out a limie of five fish. Some were consistent, some that had a
tough day on day one, had a great day today and few others had a
long day. Thirty five teams had no fish today. No northerns were
But the big news was the winning team of Kit and Trevor Johnson of Helena, MT -- owners of Kit's Tackle and one of the circuit sponsers weighed in another nice weight of 19.96 pounds for a total of 41.76 pounds to win the $10000 first place prize. They also were awarded the Top Lund Team with a check for $500 from Townsend Marine and Lund, a Navionics voucher worth $200 for a new map card, a Townsend Marine voucher worth $500 on a qualified purchase, and a couple of gift certificates from Mack's Lures worth $50 for each team member. Overall a pretty nice day for the father and son team from Helena. Congratulations guys -- Great Job.
The 2nd place honors went to Dan Spence and Tianna Workman from the Bozeman and Belgrade area. Dan and Tianna were leading the tournament going out on day one, but struggled some on day two weighing 5 fish for 6.6 pounds and dropping to 2nd with a weight of 37.42 pounds and a check for $5000. They also received to Top Mixed Couple Award for the Circuit with 2 - $100 gift cards from Snappys Sport Senter in Kalispell and another $200 check from the CFWF. They also received a check for $250 for the Fenwick Largest Walleye Award for their day one 15.08 pound walleye and an assortment of lures from Mack's Lure -- which are great walleye rigs.
3rd place went to the team of Dave Greger and Jim Muscat from Bozeman and Gallitin Gateway with a total of 30.54 pounds. They weighed in the largest walleye of the day a 13.69 pound whopper. Last year Dave and Jim ended up in 2nd place by less than a quarter pound. They did a great job again today and if they had been using Jim's GMC a little richer....
4th place went ot the team of Ken Seay and Marlin Cross with big weight of the day with 26.76 pounds and a total of 27.82 pounds. This got them the Cool Under Pressure award for improving something like 128 places from day one, winning a set of trailer tires from A-Z tires in Billings. They also won the Dinosaur Award from Scheels Sports in Billings -- a couple of gift cards, hats and tee-shirts. And on top of all that they took home the TOP GMC Tow Vehicle Award and a check for $500 from Rimrock GMC & Cadillac in Billings, MT.
Rounding out the top 5 was Ken Schmidt from Glasgow and Mark Jones from Billings with a total of 26.57 pounds. They also took the Top Ranger Team award with a $500 certificate from One Way Marine in Helena and Ranger Boats. If they had won the tournament as a Ranger Cup Qualified team they would have added another $500 check to their pockets.
Other Circuit Awards and Prizes are as follows:
Top Adult Child Team was John and Patrick Bannon with nice rod/reel combo and hats from Scheels Sports in Billings, a check for $100 from Bob and Patti Hickey and another $200 check from the CFWF.
2nd Place Adult Child Team was Dan and Kasey Chovanak with a check of $50 from River Techniques/Luckie Bethel and $150 from the CFWF.
3rd Place Adult Child Team was Mike and Bobbie McElvain from Billings with a check of $100 from the CFWF.
Top Mixed Couple Award Team was Dan Spence and Tianna Workman who overall finished in 2nd place as noted above.
2nd place Mixed Couple was the Team of Gordy and Tanya Matson of Ennis who were leading the Montana Circuit going into the tournament -- those results will be updated and posted in the next day or so.
3rd place Mixed Couple went to Phil and Kim Kumm from Great Falls.
The Hardest Charger Award went to the team of Gene Mccommon and Matt Workman who had zeroed on day one and came back with 5.81#'s on day two - winning 2 - $100 gift cards from Scheels Sports in Great Falls.
Overall, it was a great event with a lot of nice fish being caught. Congratulations to all who participated and all the volunteers who helped put this all together. A big thanks to all the sponsors -- Townsend Marine for the plaques and Big R for all the scoring cards, boat boards, weigh boards, etc.
Thanks, Dale R Gilbert
Below is a photo of 1st and 3rd place finishers from Canyon Ferry
Montana Walleye Circuit E- Blast Tiber 2012 Final Results
The finale day for the 2012 Tiber Walleye Tourney was a much tougher day for several teams with high, gusty winds that made boat control and fishing pretty tough. Yet as usual some teams made some adjustments and did fairly well.
1st place and top honors went to Ray Cole and Steve Thomas of Great Falls who weighed in another 12.12 pounds on day two for a total of 27.52 pounds.
2nd place went to Allan Jackson and Matt Zeadow of Townsend weighing 10.96 pounds on day two for a total of 26.88 pounds.
3rd place went to Kerry Parsons and Doug Rohlf of Great Falls weighing 12.22 pounds on day two for a total of 26.6 pounds.
4th place went to Robert and Terri Mills of Ulm with 10.02 pounds on day two and a total of 25.52 pounds.
Rounding out the top 5 was the team of Gordon and Tanya Matson of Ennis with a total of 25.50 pounds.
On day two because of the conditions only 22 teams weighed 5 fish for the day and 23 teams weighed no fish. Some teams called it quits fairly early because of the 25-30+mph winds
Top weight on day two went to Darren Raney and Jim Brown of Livingston with 12.56 pounds.
Largest northern was 10 lbs 15 oz. caught by Wayne and Rick Urick.
Largest walleye on day two was a 4.42 # 23” fish and a tie with 3 teams each splitting 1/3 of the day pot – Dick Wunderlich and Ken Druyvestein, Robert and Terri Mills, and Ron Groseclose and Mike Mclean.
Overall the largest walleye of the tournament was a 7.58 pound fish caught on day one by Randy Snyder and Ron Clausnitzer of Lewistown. This netted them a check for $250 for the Fenwick Largest Walleye Award as well as a selection of Mack’s Lure products.
Cool Under Pressure Award went to the team of Darren Raney and Jim Brown who advanced the most places from day one and won a set of trailer tires from A-Z tires.
The Dinosaur Award went to Terry and Paul Druyvestein with 2 -$25 gift cards, hats and t-shirts from Scheels Sports in Billings, MT.
The Hardest Charger Award went to the team of Jeff Shamley and Mike Reed with 2-$100 gift cards from Scheels Sports in Great Falls. This award goes to a team that had zero weight the first day and does the best on day two. They weighed in 7.96 pounds on day two to claim the prize.
The Top Ranger Team was Brian Olson from Havre and Dan Chovanak from Helena winning a $500 Ranger certificate.
Top Lund Team was awarded to Ray Cole and Steve Thomas netting them another $500 check from Townsend Marine and Lund. They also received a Townsend Marine certificate worth $500 towards a qualifying purchase.
Top GMC Tow Vehicle Award went again to the team of Ray Cole and Steve Thomas of Great Falls with another $500 check from Rimrock GMC/Cadillac in Billings.
Top Adult/Child honors and a check for $100 from Bob and Patti Hickey and 2 nice rod/reel combo, hats, and t-shirts from Scheels Sports in Billings went to the team of Mike and Ryan Green of Great Falls.
2nd place Adult/Child team and a $50 check from River Techniques/Luckie Bethel went to the team of Terry and Cody Eisenbarth from Great Falls.
Top Mixed Couple Award went to the team of Robert and Terri Mills of Ulm, MT – receiving 2 - $100 Gift cards from Snappy Sports Senter in Kalispell, MT.
In addition to the final cash payout for the tournament of $3000 Ray Cole and Steve Thomas also ended up as the top team winning a Navionics voucher for a $200 map card, 2 – Mack’s Lure Gift Cards worth $50 each, and the Townsend Marine Certificate worth $500 towards a qualifying purchase of $10000.
Overall, even with only 89 teams signed up this year for the tournament the top team ended up with almost $5000 in cash and prizes for their efforts from Day money payouts, final payout and the additional circuit awards.
Also we ended up drawing for the Lowrance and Minn Kota raffle Saturday evening during the awards ceremony since we sold the rest of the tickets. The lucky winners will be notified by phone on Monday – I am having a little difficulty in reading the names -- a Clarence K. from Billings won the Lowrance HDS , 8 with Insight USA maps and a Shannon C. from Absorkee won the Minn Kota Terrova with i-Pilot.
Congratulations to everyone.
And thanks to all the sponsors and volunteers that made the 2012 Tiber Walleye Tourney happen. Please show your support to both the local and the tournament sponsors.
2012 Fresno Walleye Challenge
Long story short, it was a great tournament. The final day saw
some teams really struggling yet others had a great day which is
fairly typical of tournaments as a result of fishing pressure
and changes in the weather, etc.
Top honors went to the team of Luckie Bethel and Bob Sherer with a total of 22.42 #'s. Bob and Lucky had a great day, with the best weight of the day of 12.24 #'s with 5 fish. Between the day money and final payouts they netted some$2500 in cash payouts, plus the Top Lund award of $500, a Townsend Marine voucher worth $500 on a qualified purchase, a Navionics HotMaps Platinum West card, 2- $50 gift certificates from Mack's Lures, and a $30 Rock Chip repair voucher from Falls Auto Glass in Great Falls.
The leaders on day one, Robert and Daniel Rooney had a very tough day, not weighing a fish so they dropped to 29th place overall.
Actually the fishing was a lot tougher for most of the field on day 2 with only 31 teams weighing 5 fish. Yet only 4 teams had zero on day two and one of those did not make it out and another had motor troubles and were towed in.
The team of Phil and Kim Kumm of Great Falls ended up in 2nd place with 22.02 #'s.
The team of Darrell Archey and Cory Loecker ended up in 3rd place with 20.6 #'s.
Forth place went to the team of Gordon and Tanya Matson with 19.52 #'s.
Fifth place went to the team of Allan Ranes and Steve Worden with 19.4 #'s.
The tenth place team of Ray Cole and Steve Thomas weighed a total of 17.32 #'s so the race was pretty tight.
Top Lund Team -- Bob Sherer and Luckie Bethel received $500 from Townsend Marine and Lund
Top Ranger Team -- Pat Slater and Sam Cotterell received a $500 Ranger Certificate from Ranger and One Way Marine
Top GMC Team -- Ray Cole and Steve Thomas received $500 from Rimrock GMC in Billings
Top Adult Child honors went to Andy Rose and Breydan Rose -- winning a pair of nice Scheels rod combos, Scheels hats and decals from Scheels in Billings, MT and also $100 from Bob and Patti Hickey.
The 2nd place Adult Child team was Glen and Channing Briese -- winning $50 from River Techniques/Luckie Bethel.
Top Mixed Couple honors went to Phil and Kim Kumm with 2-$100 gift certificates from Snappys Sport Senter in Kalispell.
Cool Under Pressure Award went to the team of Jim Lindquist and Mark Magers -- receiving a set of trailer tires from A-Z Tire.
Hardest Charger Award went to the team of Dave Jones and Scott Huntly -- winning a pair of Scheels "shorty" trolling rods/combos with a nice line counter reel spooled with lead core from Scheels in Great Falls.
The Largest Walleye award went to William "Jake" Monroe and Jason Hernandez with a 3.38 # walleye.
Largest Northern paid out $820 each day -- and Largest Walleye paid out $910 each day.
The Dinosaur Award was won by Luckie Bethel and Bob Sherer -- which they donated back so it went to a random draw to Clyde Dobek.
Rock Creek Results
Keller and Redfield win Rock Creek Walleye Tournament
By Steve Harada
Kris Keller and Charlie Redfield dominated the field at the 2012 Rock Creek Walleye Tourney after posting a 44.10 pound day and almost 11 pound lead after Day 1. Keller and Redfield came back to defend their 2010 crown to be champions 2 out of the last 3 years. Their total weight for two days of fishing was 58.52 pounds and the runner-up team was the mixed couple team of Carly and Whit Rush, also from Wolf Point who finished with 35.38 pounds. Carly and Whit popped the big fish of the tourney on Saturday with a 33”/14.72 pound giant. The third place team was the always tough team of Norm Sillerud and JR Rasmusan from Glasgow. Norm and JR weighed in 33.75 pounds for the event. Jigs and minnows were the bait of choice for the top 3 teams. Mother Nature provided two exceptionally nice days for the 55 teams from across Montana, North and South Dakota and Wyoming who competed in this year’s event. A few storms before and after the angling hours did light up the sky and saturate the ground but allowed almost perfect weather for being on the water. Not too warm, not too cold, no torrential wind, not to calm, no rain, wicked lightening, snow or hail, and no bugs – hmmm extremely weird Rock Creek Tournament climate?? Thanks Mother Nature!
The 2011 Fort Peck Championship series 2nd place team of the year of Todd Dooley and Randy “Sundance” Hurst from Sidney and Fairview made a good charge on Day 2 by posting a 22.63 pound day and ended up finishing fourth place and advanced 20 places. Dooley and Hurst also caught the largest walleye on Day 2 with a 32 ½” walleye and used crank baits to entice the walleye. Last year’s champions Dan Majeske and Scott MacKenzie, of the Rock Creek Tourney and the Fort Peck Series ended up in 8th place with a total 22.92 pounds. The adult/child team was Ryan Dempsey of Miles City and Garrett Pronto from Wolf Point who finished in 30th place overall. The big Northern of Day 1 was a 40” pike caught by Levi Sugg and Seth Morehouse of Glasgow. Marty Oyloe and Sheldon Meidinger from Williston and Bismarck, ND pulled in the largest Northern for Day 2 with a 42” monster that provided them with a very enduring battle.
Overall the bite seemed to be a little off from recent years and many teams struggled to find the fish and/or what the presentation the fickle walleye wanted. Lots of pike and perch kept anglers busy and provide for a very optimistic future fishing for Fort Peck, especially for the northern pike aficionados. The perch, pike and smallmouth bass seemed to be very prevalent throughout the Big Dry Arm. Thanks to the patrol boat volunteers and all of the other folks who contribute their own time and efforts to help make the Rock Creek Walleye Tournament a successful event. A huge thanks goes out to our cooks, Kiyo and Rockie Ruhd, scorekeeper/all around helper Lee Ann Loucks, and to Bill and all the staff from the world famous Rock Creek Marina who always take excellent care of their customers. . Thanks to the Rock Creek Walleye Tournament sponsors Nemont Beverage of Glasgow, Rock Creek Marina, Hi Line Sports and NAPA from Wolf Point, and Community First Bank of Glendive. The next event for the Ft. Peck series is the Montana Governor’s Cup and this year is the 25th annual, with lots of new and exciting plans for this year’s event! See you there!
7th Annual Perch Derby - Lewistown - January 21st-22nd