June 27, 2016

Trout Unlimited Contest Winners

The winners of the Trout Unlimited Blog Writing Contest have been picked and according to the judges, it was NOT easy picking from such a great group of entries.

We have decided to have a bit of fun with the big reveal of the top 10 winners. Slow roll style! As per the contest entry, the top 10 blog entries all receive a Trout Unlimited Hat. In addition to that, the top 4 entries win a trip in Montana this July.

We recognize things may have changed between the time someone entered their blog submission (and still could over the weeks) so TU has also assigned each winner an alternate position in case the winners ahead of you can not join in on the trip. In other words, even if your entry didn’t make the top 4, there is always that possibility you could be headed to Montana, so stay tuned!

A special message from TU:

We at TU wanted to thank the Outdoor Blogger Network and the amazing response from outdoor bloggers all over the country to our writing contest. We were especially impressed by the research many of the bloggers put into their writing as they turned their attention to the conservation of our coldwater fisheries and made the connection between TU’s work on the ground and the opportunity it protects restores on behalf of sportsmen. Judging this contest was extremely challenging–there was a lot of good work out there, and we’re grateful for all excitement the contest spurred in the outdoor blogging community. Thank you so much for your interest in TU and in the work we do to protect, reconnect and restore our coldwater fisheries and their habitats from coast to coast.

Chris Hunt
Trout Unlimited
Sportsmen’s Conservation Project

And thank you TU for allowing the OBN to host such an amazing opportunity!

So this is how we are going to reveal the winners of this contest…hourly-ish. We will add new ones to this entry throughout the day, on the OBN Facebook page and Twitter. So here we go, the Winners in order of 10th – 1st:

10th place winnerFly Chick Bares All (sixth alternate) and her entry Where I’ve been & What’s Next: Why We Need YOu To Help!

9th place winner ~ The Sporting Life (fifth alternate) and his entry Hooked (A Story about Ted Trueblood and one Small Trout)

8th place winner ~ The Tailing Loop (fourth alternate) and his entry Lost in Dreams

7th place winner ~ The Naturalist’s Angle (third alternate) and his entry Unforgettable Trout Trips

6th place winnerWalkin’ with the Wild Woman (Second alternate) and her entry Longing for Cool Clean Water

5th place winner ~ Chucking Line and Chasing Tail (first alternate) and his entry The Canyon

All right, the TU judges get the finger pointed at them for this next twist in the contest. They scored the blog posts independently and when they all came together to compare winner scores, 2nd, 3rd and 4th place became one in the same. Meaning, it was a 3-way tie. Equal scores. No one blog post edged the other one out to claim a spot of their own. So it has been decided there is no 4th or 3rd place. The next 3 winners are all 2nd place winners and will be headed to Montana in July!

Grand Prize Winners

2nd place winnerOwl Jones and his entry Dream a Little Dream (of Trout out West)

2nd place winner ~ Up the Poudre and his entry of the same name Up The Poudre

2nd place winner ~ the tailout and his entry Advocates for the Best

1st place winner goes to….
(drum roll please)

Mike’s Gone Fishin’ …Again and his entry The Best Trout Fishing Trip Ever


Thank you to everyone that participated in the contest. We had a great turn out, the writing was amazing and everyone had fun following along from start to this final announcement. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Outdoor Bloggers are the BEST!! Thank you again to Trout Unlimited for providing this opportunity to the community, we appreciated it!

**Note: Congrats winners! Please send your contact information–email, address, phone number–to contact@outdoorbloggernetwork.com**

About Rebecca

When Rebecca isn't running the Outdoor Blogger Network, she is off Fly Fishing her favorite rivers. Occasionally she writes about those adventures at The Outdooress.


  1. 1

    Pretty sneaky way to announce the winners! Should be exciting!

  2. 2

    Talk about your suspense building….

  3. 3

    I know…I know….but all 10 entries deserve their own moment since they are so great, so hopefully this way each winner will get a few extra reads, visitors and anyway, this is a Monday, we all need something fun to keep this day going =)

  4. 4

    Well, to tell you the truth, it’s about the best possible way you could have done it…even though it does make you look like meanies. ;) I don’t know how you guys are going to top this contest!?!

    I just know you will, somehow….one day….

  5. 10
    Chandra Fallon Bessette says:

    I’ll take this moment to say the many thank yous that are deserved. I really appreciate the opportunity to express something that is new to me and get a message out there to those that are interested in trying something new.

    It isn’t easy to put together an event or a contest to Rebecca and Chris and the rest that are behind the scenes. Thank you for this opportunity.


    PS You made my Monday Sunnier! ;)

    • 11

      Congrats Chandra! Your entry was fantastic (loved all the pictures too) and thank you for your kind words. We had fun doing this and can’t wait for the next one.

  6. 12

    Looks like I took 8th place. Congrats to all of the winners! Now, let’s see four of you top finishers drop out!

  7. 16

    I actually placed! Very cool. Congrats to all of the other excellent entries and authors. Looking forward to seeing who won’t be able to make it to Montana… not that I would want anyone to be unable to go… but maybe there’s a chance… you know…
    Thanks TU and OBN for an awesome opportunity!

  8. 22

    Holy Moly – I have fainted.. who would have thought –
    Thank you so much for this great opportunity! I have enjoyed the slow roll announcing today – it’s kept me occupied because heaven knows there wasn’t a fish to be had in any of the spots I went. Thanks again for such a great opportunity for all of us here and for keeping me entertained while I patiently await some fish to actually take a bite of the bait!

    • 23

      See there! Someone is grateful for the day’s slow rolling fun =)
      Congrats to you Gretchen. You did a great job and I LOVE the photography on your blog. Now…catch a fish =)

  9. 24

    I think we need to be worried Tailing Loop. I doubt the folks ahead of us are going to be deterred by the Centennial Valley’s rampaging grizzlies. impassable roads, closed trails, landslides, whirling disease, New Zealand mudsnails, muddy water, hoof and mouth, chronic wasting, the fact that all of the fish and wildlife are gone and…

  10. 28

    5th place huh…that’s cool. Im ready to roll if someone drops out

    • 29

      Congrats Josh! And now the pressure is on those top 4 entries. By the sounds of it, if one of them hesitates their spot will be GONE (and quickly & happily by an alternate)

  11. 30

    I was just thinking: I can only imagine what you’re (non)unique user hits will look like today from this winner thread. ;)

  12. 32

    O.M.G. O.M.G. O.M.G.

    • 33

      Congrats Owl!! You wrote a fantastic blog entry and deserve it. Of course…if you can’t make it, there are a few bloggers that are chopping at the bit for your spot….

      I’d suggest start packing your bags now and I’ll see you in a month =)

  13. 34

    if spots 2,3,and 4 are all tied at # 2, why wait a half hour in between? The suspense is killing me. How do you expect us to get work done with this sort of suspense on a Monday afternoon?

    • 35

      Sorry Sam, I’m just the messenger! We only have one more hour and then all the winners will officially be announced and packing their bags…

  14. 36

    Congrats, Owl! Looks like you need to get in some back rehab and some practice hikes… and if there are snakes that deter you, I’ll gladly take your place. Just sayin’. I know there are still two ahead of me, but a boy can dream right?

  15. 38

    I feel like the kid with his face pressed up against the store window, but cant get in….sheeeeeeeet

  16. 40

    Gotta tell you all… this has been a great day! Rebecca… great job rolling these out and building some suspense. And congratulations to the winners! You all did such a great job… it was soooo tough to pick only FOUR!

    • 41

      I don’t think the slow roll earned me any friends Chris, but I think it was worth it. Every one of the entries deserved their 1 hour in the spotlight!

  17. 42

    This has certainly kept my attention through the day. . and since I am in Alaska, I still have two hours left in the work day! Congrats to the winners thus far, what a fun contest and opportunity.
    Back to nail biting. . .


  18. 44

    Just wanted to thank Rebecca, Joe, and Chris (Eat More Brook Trout/TU) for this opportunity. I am absolutely in shock considering all of the great writing and posts that were in the contest!

    Thanks again :-)

    • 45

      Congrats Sanders! Great Entry and we can’t wait to read about your experience in Montana. Now comes the hard part, what to pack and the wait until next month!

      • 46

        What did I say Sanders? Glad you made it man- that was an outstanding post. I’ll be following your posts from MT (and all the ones in between) Keep it up, you may have a career in writing.

  19. 47

    Congrats to all the winners so far. Holy cow that was a great contest.

  20. 48
    Travis DuBois says:

    Wow, thanks a ton OBN, and TU. I’m super honored and will do my best up there. All the entries were great.

  21. 50

    Congrats to all! Great competition! Look forward to the next one.

  22. 51

    Absolutely fantastic contest!! Congratulations to all the winners. lol Well, of course we all do, but I’m happy for the winners none the less.

  23. 52

    Congrats to all the other winners. I can’t help but feel sorry for those of you that didn’t make it. Not in a bad way – no pity party or anything…I’m just sayin’…..I wish everyone could be there…or that I could fish with you all on the way. Hmmm…now there’s an idea.

    I look forward to meeting everyone – the winners and Chris H. and anyone else. Good Lord I’ll even be eager to say hello to a grizzly or a bull elk. (from the car)

  24. 53

    Owl, it would have just been so wrong to have mentioned the poisonous snakes and serpents or current rabies epidemic because you can’t imagine how the rest of us losers would feel if you winners dropped out after realizing the peril you will be in, resulting in us moving into your slots. That would just be so unfair, which is why Steve and I stayed classy and positive by concentrating on the good rather than bad news.

  25. 55

    Mike! I knew that was a winner! Great stuff. Congrats!

  26. 56

    I want to first say thanks to OBN and TU for giving us a chance at amazing brass ring. Congrats to all the winners. Hope that Montana is an epic adventure for you folks. I am sure it will be.

    • 57

      Thanks! It was a very cool contest and opportunity. Hopefully TU will do another one with us all! It will be fun reading all 4 bloggers accounts of the experience.

  27. 58

    What a spectacular group of winners, I can’t wait to read what the travelers write about this trip. I’m especially excited to see what Mike has to say, his way with words is aspirational..is that a word? Fully deserving of his first place finish, and I’m glad the TU judges agree.

    Also, I’m happy work was busy today and I didn’t notice this post until after hours. I would have been squirming in my seat to see the next name. Much better to take it all in at once.

    • 59

      Clif ~ Looks like a perfect word to me…aspirational

      You didn’t have to squirm all day? Ok, I’ll figure out another way to torture you

  28. 60

    Holy @#$%. (How’s that for eloquence?)

    Thanks to everyone involved – TU, OBN, and all of the great bloggers who participated. I am humbled, and excited, to be a part of this Montana experience. I can’t wait.

    • 61

      I’d say that’s an appropriate amount of eloquence. Just the right note =)
      Congrats to you and your amazing blog entry. We will all be watching for your follow up posts and have no doubt it will be a Montana experience you won’t forget…

  29. 62

    Congrats to all. Jealous. I wrote the piece but couldn’t clear my schedule, thus didn’t submit. Do us proud all of you, and yes, I agree, OBN must have a plan to take over the world with this announcement style. Can’t wait to see the posts from the trip.

    • 63

      Hopefully there will be a ‘next time’ with TU and you’re schedule will be clear!

      And I’ll confer with Joe about the whole take over the world concept, but so far, we’d just settle for programs/software code that work properly on the OBN =)

  30. 64

    I’d just like to go ahead and admit that I’m glad your schedule was what it was FR. I heard your writing was banned in 5 states already. ;) Too good. Too good.

  31. 65

    congrats to all of the winners. it is a great opportunity as we all know and I am looking forward to seeing everyone’s posts about their time out here in Montana.

  32. 66

    Good criminy, there is a wealth of talent out there! Congrats to all who won, and to all who entered. And hats off to Rebecca and Joe for putting this together.

    • 67

      You’re welcome! Chris with TU gets big credit points as well. And you’re right, there is some major talent (whistles loudly) to be found in this community.

  33. 68

    wow. what a great contest. Great job, everyone!!

  34. 69

    WOW – I leave for one day to do the “new homeowner” garbage – home inspection, mortgage app – and Rebecca has the entire OBN world eating out of the palm of her hand as she S L O W L Y announces winners! Awesome job by her, and even more outstanding is the response from EVERYONE who entered. Thanks to the winners, the participants, TU, and the whole OBN community!


  35. 70

    Congratulations and have fun winners, you’ve earned a trip to a very special place. I’m new at blogging, but as a “traditional” outdoor writer with a newspaper and magazine background in the past, I applaud the quality of writing found through OBN. With many publications dead or dying and budget cuts eliminating outdoor writers, the future is here and in on-line magazines.

  36. 71

    Congrats everyone! Hopefully I’ll be able to hop in on this contest if it’s still around when I’m of age. Can’t wait to read the posts about the trip…

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