Outdoors Niagara

  2007 Roger Toby Memorial
Niagara River Steelhead Contest

Exclusively on Outdoors Niagara! This page edited and all photos by web owner Mark Daul. Posted here on 02/18/07

If you have pictures email me with the information: Name, fish size, etc. 
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Lou is holding a couple of nice steelies he caught.  
Both weighed over 11 pounds!
The one on the left was not frozen, it was wiggling

The Annual February 17 2007 Roger Tobey Memorial Steelhead Contest was won by Bob Lerch with a 12 pound 15 ounce Steelie! Lerch actually caught the second place fish [12.5 pounds] too but rules state entrants could only win one prize! Lerch also picked up $150.00 in the 50/50 draw at the awards ceremonies.

Second place went to D. J. LaVoy with a even 12 pounder.

Third place was John Simone with an 11 pound 14 ounce specimen.

Registrations were down this year probably due to the weather and river conditions. NOT because of lack of fish! There were loads of fish released. Only 22 fish were entered and of those 16 were at or just over 11 pounds. True Sportsmen! Every fisherman realizes what Catch and Release means to the future our fishery for sure. There were no fish entered from the tribs this year 
but the reports from the fishermen fishing from shore at Artpark reported a good number of steelies were caught and released.

All boats reported good Catch and Release numbers. Captain John DeLorenzo reported upwards of 40 fish caught and released but everyone knew they had to enter at least an 11+  pound fish to be considered.

Fisherman, outdoorsman, outdoors writer [Buffalo News] Will Elliott, fishing from Campbell's boat reported loads Catch and Releases. 

Elliott states: "This had to be the best Roger Toby Steelie tourney - and perhaps the best day of steelie fishing - I've ever enjoyed on the lower Niagara River."

"Frank had us into fish on the first drift. When the sun came out and things began to slow, other boaters were slowed, but his catch numbers continued. We had to have at least 60 fish on and boated 40-plus before the contest ended."

"What could be better?" ..........

Congratulations to all entrants and the Tournament committee headed up by Richard Fortier. Hats off to Tom Jacobs for his untiring efforts and Richard's Dad, Dick Fortier for being there like he has all through the years.

Side Note: All fish were examined by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation for metal tracking tags which were inserted when the fish were stocked. These almost microscopic tags are great tools for finding out a fishes movement to see how far away from "home" they are or if they migrated at all. The tags also reveal growth rates which tell us if the fish has a sufficient forage base. The tiny "tags" used on these fish are inserted in the snout of the fish when it is very young before stocking. 

Make sure you check the photos below!

Weigh master Tom Jacobs Weighing in a contestants 11 pound plus steelhead. Notice the pretty red/pink coloration along the side. [on the fish!]

The weigh master is happier than the fisherman! Although 
he is hard to see, that is Joel Morrison holding an 11.4 steelhead  he caught while fishing with Captain John DeLorenzo's
Niagara River Charters.
The word of the day: Brrr!

This is what the river looked like the day before the tournament. The truck is a Village of Lewiston truck spreading salt on the ramp. The village also maintains a pile of gravel and a shovel in case it is needed when hauling your trailer out on icy days.

Sorry about not getting fishermen's names for these photos but the photographer was a one man show without his note taker. [Too cold]

This is Richard Fortier on the left. Richard has run this contest for the past 12 years and the tournament has always been a success. One of Richards best friends Tom Jacob [on right] served as the official weigh master this year as he has done in past tournaments. 
Thank Rich and Tom for your efforts!

The awards ceremony at the Lewiston Fire Hall was another accolade to the success of this tournament.
Thank You Firemen for your support!

Lower Niagara River Captain Frank Campbell with his fishing crew coming in to dock. The weigh scales closed at 2:00 PM. 
That's Campbell at the controls and Buffalo News outdoors writer Will Elliott [in the orange flotation jacket] taking a picture of the spectators on shore. Never got the other hearty fishermen names. Look at the ice eh?

Roy Mura is a strong armed man. 
This one went over 11 pounds.

Don't need to ice these down!
Oh! .......I love the colors. Think about it, most people don't have  a clue of what we do around here  ALL YEAR 'ROUND!
Want to get into fish like this? Check our special Charter Captains Page and you will have dozens and dozens of choices. GO HERE

If I caught a fish like this under freezing conditions like this fellow did I would pose for the camera too! 
What a beauty! Thanks for the photo.

Have you ever launched your boat in conditions like this? 
I have always said, this is a winter contest and this is no
place for sissies! This guy is taking his boat out. While he was backing into the river one of his four trailer wheels froze up in the parking lot while he was fishing. When he drove to the ramp with an empty trailer you could see the one wheel not turning.

The boat in the background is 
Captain John DeLorenzo with his clients. 
Notice the ice cakes, and lots of them too!

Here is a "Ripley's Believe it or Not"  A  6 or 8 foot ice cake that boaters need to avoid. You could sink your boat if you rammed one of these things hard enough. You would probably have a 5 minute death, or if wearing a floatation suit, you could have another 30 minutes or more to be rescued.
Glass boats, "tin" [aluminum] boats, it makes no difference. Most all our winter steelheaders use "tin" boats.
Don't be stupid.
I have more winter river photos and if you want to see them email me and I'll build another page and put them on it for you. Most people never see the river in it's beautiful winter colors.

Personally I think our winters are great 
and our winters should be shared.
I have Lake pictures as well.

Check my Lake Ontario webcam,
it is right in front of my house. 
I live next to Four Mile State Park 
right on the lake.
Go Here to see the cam

If you want to enjoy some of our fishing opportunities
or just want to learn what our opportunities are 
hire a Charter Captain. There are dozens listed HERE

You must realize Outdoors Niagara does not know if all Charter Captains listed are fully insured or legitimate. That is up to you to know that stuff. It's your money and your responsibility.

All fish not taken home were donated to local youth fundraisers for wild game dinners that appear in early spring. 
No fish are wasted.

Go here to see Roy Mura's  slide show taken  on his 
excursion in the Tournament right from his boat.  
If you have never seen the Artpark drift you will see it here and more!  

Brocks Monument is a (185-foot) column atop Queenston Heights, in Queenston, Ontario, dedicated to Major-General Isaac Brock, one of Canada's heroes of the War of 1812
Loads of History! Hundreds of fishermen and millions of tourists have seen it.
The monument was constructed between 1853 and 1856

Vintage photo. That's the General's likeness on the top overlooking the Queenston battlefield

The top of Brock's Monument
courtesy of James Brown

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