The first annual Shake Off the Blues ice fishing challenge takes place February 13 to March 7 and there's as much as $8,000 in prize money to be won for those lucky enough to catch the biggest kokanee, lake trout, brook trout and rainbow trout in the north.
This is a COVID-friendly event so when people catch a fish they use an app to send the information to the organizers of Shake Off the Blues event, which offers a real-time leaderboard to see who caught what when and how big theirs has to be to beat it.
This new event has invited Northern BC MLAs to join in the fun so the full title of the fishing contest offered by the Angler's Atlas website and mobile app MyCatch is called the 2021 First Annual Northern BC MLA Ridings Ice Fishing Challenge.
Participating MLA’s include Mike Bernier (Peace River South), Shirley Bond (Prince George-Valemount), Dan Davies (Peace River North), Lorne Doerkson (Cariboo Chilcotin), Mike Morris (Prince George-Mackenzie) and Carloee Oakes (Cariboo North). The Skeena is also included in the contest.
Everyone is welcome to participate in the fishing challenge.
“We are excited to work with our MLAs on this event,” Sean Simmons, Angler’s Atlas president, said. "We’re all looking for new ways to stay active and engaged with our community during this pandemic.”
Anglers participate by using the mobile app called MyCatch.
“You just take a picture of the fish on a measuring device, and the app does the rest,” Simmons said.
Prince George-Mackenzie MLA Mike Morris is all in.
"The MyCatch app is an excellent tool to enable a fun-filled competition for anglers while complying with the current rigid pandemic restrictions," Morris said. "As an outdoors person myself, I encourage everyone to experience the gift of BC’s biodiversity while enjoying this competition.”
On top of the individual prizes for the biggest fish that are $1,000 for the biggest fish in each category, followed by $500 for the next biggest and $250 for third place is that each participating riding is going after the title for Fishing Capital of Northern BC. Whatever riding has the most participants wins and gets to donate 50 per cent of the net proceeds to the charity of their choice.
“The entry fee is $20 and our goal is to sign up 500 anglers across Northern BC,” Simmons said.
“If we reach our target, we will be able to award over $8,000 in prizes to the winning anglers.”
To get the rules and register visit www.anglersatlas.com/tournament/469/shake-off-the-blues-2021.