NWS Kayak Guys Take 1st, 4th In Contest

Bryce Molenkamp and Mark Veary, Northwest Sportsman‘s “Kayak Guys” finished first and fourth in Northwest Kayak Anglers‘ third-annual Angler of the Year contest. And one of Veary’s sons again finished first in the youth division.

Molenkamp, known online as “Zee,” tallied 1,538.5 points thanks to an 18-inch greenling that netted him 198 points and a 23 1/4-inch cabezon that yielded 186 points, among other high-scoring catches.

Points are awarded by length, but some fish offer more than others. For instance, smaller species such as surfperch and panfish are awarded 12 points per inch while sturgeon and halibut yield 3.5 points per inches. The contest runs all year.

A last-minute New Year’s Eve surfperch scoring 165 points pushed Roy Marcum of Coos Bay, aka “coosbayyaker,” into second with a total of 1,516.87 points.

He bypassed Brian Johnson of Irrigon, “eobasser,” who took third with 1,495.75. His 2010 catches included a personal-best 21 1/2-inch smallmouth bass that also weighed 6 pounds, 4 ounces.

Hillsboro’s Mark Veary, “spot,” garnered 1,317.125 points and fourth place.

His son, Nowell, aka “Kapena,” finished with 311.5 points, good for first and prizes including “immersion wear from NRS including neoprene chest waders and wetsuit booties, a paddle top, a sunhat and a drybag,” says Mark.

“Last year his brother Taylor won the kids division,” he adds.

Prizes for the adult pool include a new kayak from Ocean Kayak, a Humminbird 385ci color fishfinder, a Lamiglass salmon rod, assorted Scotty mounts and accessories, annual subscriptions to Northwest Sportsman and sunglasses from Hobie Polarized, according to Veary.

There were 33 adult participants who turned in fish in 2010. The contest is open for 20 different species of fish caught in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, BC and Alaska.

The fish that may have secured the Angler of the Year title for Molenkamp was a rotund-as-hell 18 1/2-inch smallmouth he caught on Lake Washington on frigid Dec. 30. It bit a broken-back Rapala in trout pattern.

“That right there is worth a win,” noted Veary, who won 2009 and 2008’s contests.

It was worth 164 1/4 points for the Shoreline, Wash., man. (who at 6-foot-7 may also be the world’s tallest kayak angler). He finished fifth in 2009 and fourth in 2008, and his point total in 2010 was the contest’s highest to date.

Last year, he also landed a 7-foot sturgeon from a kayak, though he couldn’t enter it into the derby because it wasn’t legal to retain the fish.

Registration for the 2011 contest has already begun.

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