oakley 23 contest in GeorginaAlmo

23 contest in Georgina

Almost 20 years after the first Olympic style fishing event was hosted in Georgina, anglers are still live releasing their entire catch to maximize points and net the Canadian Ice Fishing Championship crown.

With the 2014 CIFC just around the corner in Jackson Point Feb. 22 and 23, Joe Montgomery remembers the angling event that started it all back in 1992.

were still dedicated to the same heavy line, big lures, big baitfish and old style techniques we had used for decades. We learned our lesson, though, and by the time the first CIFC was launched, many anglers had oakley adapted and the modern age of ice fishing descended upon Lake Simcoe, says the veteran angler, who has been involved with the CIFC since day one.

In addition to Mr. Montgomery, major players such as Mike Burrows, Paul Nicholls and John Power organized the first CIFC in 1994.

Rocky Madsen served on the board of directors and eventually took over the championship in 2005.

Retaining similar features to the World championships, the new CIFC had one significant difference, says seasoned angler and industry expert Wil Wegman.

insisted that catch and release would have to be a fundamental principle if this style of tournament was ever to gain a foothold here in Canada, he says. years later and it still is.

As a member of Team Canada at the World championships, as well as a competitor in that first CIFC, Mr. Wegman looks forward every year to competing in the high level, competitive ice fishing event held on the shores of Lake Simcoe in Georgina.

Competing anglers from Canada and the United States regard this as our country premier ice fishing event, Mr. Wegman adds.

Rosa Sharpe of Lures and Tours, which took over the championship in 2012, said many teams from across both countries have already registered.

In addition to the draw of dropping a line at the ice fishing capital of North America, Ms Sharpe says many anglers have been netted with the tournament team style play and 80 per cent cash pay out in addition to numerous product draws, bonus prizes, goodie bags and awards.

In addition to $10,000, about $23,000 in prizes was given out during last year event.

Ken Prentice of Cedar Val oakley ley and Calvin Perry of Newmarket netted the 2013 CIFC title, taking home a total of $3,456 after weighing in 15 perch on day one alone.

It was also during last year award banquet and dinner that Mr. M oakley ontgomery received a custom painting by Murray Henderson portraying Mr. Montgomery on the ice, as well as a framed certificate from Georgina Mayor Rob Grossi, recognizing the vet oakley eran angler years of dedication and service to the tournament.

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