STAR JOURNAL REPORT
The Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce has announced that registration for the 2016 Fishing Hot Spots Hodag Musky Challenge is open. Anglers from around Wisconsin and the Midwest are expected to participate in this 35th annual event, set for September 23-25.This is a catch-and-release tournament which awards points for the size of muskies caught across five different lake groups in the Rhinelander area.
New this year are the lake groupings, which include the return of one the area’s popular lakes. The five groupings are Boom Lake/WI River; Crescent Lake/Oneida Lake/Hancock Lake; Moen Chain, Pelican Lake and Lake Thompson/Lake George/Lake Julia.
“We are really excited to add Pelican Lake back into the mix and to rework our lake groupings,” said Bill Clow, RACC Executive Director. “Our goal is to build the Hodag Musky Challenge tournament and bring the best possible value and experience to our fishermen, sponsors, visitors and the Rhinelander community.”
In 2015, the tournament moved to a judge boat scoring format rather than lakeside fish registration stations. The rule change means that fish 34 inches and larger are eligible for points rather than only fish 40 inches and larger as in years past.
Last year, over 160 fishermen competed for close to $15,000 in cash payouts for the top teams in the Hodag Musky Challenge. Thirty-seven measurable fish were caught throughout the weekend. The largest Musky of the tournament was caught on the Moen Chain and measured 45 ½ inches.
Teams are composed of two anglers per boat at a cost of $250 per team. Registration is open through Friday, September 23 and can be found online at www.ExploreRhinelander.com or by contacting the Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce.
Event sponsors include Fishing Hot Spots and Shoeder’s RV & Marine.