Update: Golden North Salmon Derby rescheduled over wind safety concerns

Wind spins a turbine at Coast Guard Station Juneau, Sept. 29, 2016. The Goldbelt Mount Roberts Tramway is visible between the blades. (Photo by Jeremy Hsieh/KTOO)
Wind spins a turbine at Coast Guard Station Juneau, Sept. 29, 2016, with the Goldbelt Mount Roberts Tramway visible between the blades. Bad wind conditions in the forecast led organizers to cancel with weekend’s Golden North Salmon Derby. (Photo by Jeremy Hsieh/KTOO)

Update (Friday, 1:25 p.m.)Jeremy Hsieh, KTOO

The new dates of this year’s Golden North Salmon Derby have been set: Aug. 23-25.

Original story

Organizers of the Golden North Salmon Derby are cancelling this weekend’s fishing contest due to potentially dangerous wind conditions in Juneau-area waters.

Doug Larsen is a co-chair of this year’s derby, in which anglers compete for cash prizes to land the biggest King or Coho salmon over a three-day period.

“We just cannot in good conscience have people out there, you know, trying to catch fish when the conditions are not safe for them,” he said. “So, as much as we regret to do this, we think it’s the right thing to do and we certainly apologize for any inconvenience this creates for people.”

In a special weather statement on Wednesday night, the National Weather Service forecast increasing winds on the water Friday afternoon, with gale force winds expected Saturday.

Larsen said they hope to reschedule. He said they’ll make things right with people who already bought tickets and cannot participate on the new dates.

“The very first derby 73 years ago, they actually did have a postponement because of bad weather. But we’ve had a string of what, 72 years now?” he said.

The nonprofit Territorial Sportsmen Inc. puts on the annual event to raise money for scholarships.

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