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Chantry Chinook Classic led by 17-pounder as of Tuesday morning

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The Lake Huron Fishing Club’s Chantry Chinook Classic Salmon Derby is underway.

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As of Tuesday morning, Bob McLean of Monkton, Ont., led the way after landing a 17.39-pound chinook salmon. The derby runs until 2 p.m. Monday.

The angler who catches the heaviest salmon will net the derby’s top prize of $15,000. Second place will win $4,000 while the third-place finisher in the salmon category goes home with $2,000.

In the trout category, the top prize nets $7,500 with $1,500 going to the runner-up and $750 to the third-place finisher.

Fourth-place finishers in each category will receive a sponsor prize.

Don Voll topped the trout table Tuesday morning with a 17.58-pound lake trout.

The derby features four weigh-in stations at the Kincardine Harbour, Port Elgin Harbour, Lures N Lines in Wiarton, and the Inverhuron Provincial Park.

Face coverings are mandatory for the anglers weighing in fish at any of the four stations.

All proceeds from the derby go to the Lake Huron Fishing Club’s conservation efforts. More than 1,000 anglers have signed up to participate.

The derby grounds roughly run from Port Albert on the coast of Lake Huron to just north of Stokes Bay, and west to the U.S. border. On the other side of the peninsula in Georgian Bay, the grounds go from just north of Dyer’s Bay south to Colpoys Bay and east 16 kilometres.

The Chantry Classic was cancelled in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2019, Walkerton’s Caitlin Widdles won the top prize with a 28.96-pound salmon and Kincardine’s Ernest Ackert netted a 28.29-pound lake trout to take the trout category. More than 1,600 anglers took part in the 2019 Chantry Classic.

The Lake Huron Fishing Club is a not-for-profit group operating a pair of hatcheries stocking Lake Huron with salmon as well as rainbow and brown trout.

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