The Borderline Bassin' Contenders club is readying to hold its annual kid's fishing contest, now named the Rudy Horat Memorial Bluegill Tournament, at Fazon Lake Saturday, June 21.
Youngsters up to age 14 may compete for free in this two-hour angling contest that has Fazon's prodigious bluegill sunfish population in its sights.
Registration for this fish and wildlife department-sanctioned event starts at 10 a.m. with young angling contestants plying these greater Goshen area waters in earnest from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Each contestant will get a tackle pack and soft drink while the main prizes are awarded to anglers in three separate age groups (ages 0-5, 6-9 and 10-14) who catch the most bluegill. Other prizes will go to the fisher(s) with the biggest as well as the smallest bluegill.
Contestants should also keep their catches in separate buckets. The club will have some handy for those who come without one.
GETTING IN THE BLUEGILL GAME
There's no publicly accessible shoreline from which to fish Fazon's shallow, marsh-bounded confines. There is a solid concrete puncheon ramp for small trailered boats and good parking, both belonging to the fish and wildlife department.
This access is located on East Hemmi Road about .2 mile east of Everson-Goshen Road four miles north of the Mount Baker Highway.
But out on the lake there's plenty of room for boats to maneuver and long stretches of weedy shallows to ply for the bluegills.
Fishing successfully for bluegies does not require sophisticated (expensive) rods and reels nor does the terminal tackle need to be complicated.
The small-mouthed bluegills do go for small baits from chunks of red worm or a single egg to equally tiny jigs or fly patterns.
Typically, those baited hooks, fly patterns or tiny brightly colored jigs are slung up to five feet under needle or globe-style bobbers.
FAZON FISHING 365
Fazon is open year-round, though there is a seasonal ban on fishing from boats during the waterfowl hunting season.
Fishing rules not complicated on its waters with statewide rules applying to all gamefish except for the daily keeper limit of channel catfish that is dropped to two bewhiskered fish per day there.
Besides the aforementioned cats, Fazon fishers also are likely to encounter a range of largemouth bass including a very few that may verge on 'hog' size.
A paddleboat donated by Darold Hanson will be raffled at the close of this year's Fazon tournament.
Tickets for the drawing are $1 each and will be sold up to one hour before the winner is chosen.
Proceeds fund next year's bluegill event and to the club's general fund for its projects.
FAZON FISHING 365
The Borderline Bassin Contenders want to recognize and thank donors to this year's Rudy Horat Memorial Bluegill Tournament including Dave's Sports Shop in Lynden, Yeager's Sporting Goods in Bellingham, West Marine, F&G Able Electric Company and Platt Electric.
Also on the 2014 donors list are Bob's Burgers and Brew, Everson Red Apple Market, Fidalgo Bay Coffee Roasters, Holiday Sports, North Coast Electric, What-Comm and Hardware Sales.
The Borderline Bassin' Contenders are affiliated with the Washington State Bass Federation and also participate annually in both hunting and fishing season- and regulation-setting processes. They also send representatives to some sessions of the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission.
Doug Huddle, the Bellingham Herald's outdoors correspondent, since 1983, has written a weekly fishing and hunting column that now appears Sundays. Read his blog and contact him at http://pblogs.bellinghamherald.com/outdoors.