The Seward Phoenix Log - News of the Eastern Kenai Peninsula since 1966

By Tommy Wells
Seward Phoenix LOG 

Wetherhorn: 'I haven't stopped smiling yet'


August 24, 2017 | View PDF

Courtesy photo

Scott Campbell of Chevrolet of South Anchorage (far right) presented Ian Wetherhorn with a new truck on Sunday. Wetherhorn won the truck by catching a specially tagged fish while competing in the Seward Silver Salmon Derby. With Wetherhorn are his wife, Alice, and their daughter, Saylor.

Neither rain, a long road from his home in Houston, nor hours of hearing his wife's plans for talking him out of his reward could stop Ian Wetherhorn from being on hand Sunday afternoon at the awards program for the 62nd annual Seward Silver Salmon Derby.

"I wouldn't have missed this for anything," the winner of the 2017 pickup truck said. "I haven't stopped smiling yet. I might not be able to stop for a long time."

Wetherhorn landed the first "big" fish of the week-long tournament on Monday, August 14. His 3.62-pound coho-tagged as #569-earned him a 2017 Chevy Silverado pickup truck, courtesy of Chevrolet of South Anchorage.

Wetherhorn wasn't initially excited about the small fish, he said. About the time he caught the silver, the other line he had in the water was hit by a much larger fish.

"At the time I caught (the winning fish) the other reel was hooked, so I was trying to get the tiny one onboard and hit it so I could get to the bigger one," he said. "The other fish was much larger so, really, I didn't even notice (the tag) at the time."

Once he had landed the larger silver, he noticed the blue tag on the smaller one.

"I was like, 'What is this?'" he said. "Then, when I realized what it was, it was get back to the harbor as fast as I could. It didn't matter if everyone got beat up on the way back.

"I never dreamed a tiny 3-pounder would win a new truck."

To round off the excitement, the truck is almost the same color as the winning fish.

"That's really great," Wetherhorn said. "I couldn't ask for it to be any better."


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