Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Friday, September 16, 2016: The wind didn’t feel like backing off ... BUGGY ALERT HOLGATE

Terning blue ... End-of-season terns against a cool blue sky.


BUGGY ALERT HOLGATE!!!!!: The winds and waves have created some double-hidden cutaways/escarpments at a couple places along the Holgate beachfront -- most dangerously right after you come on, maybe 100 yards from the ramp, toward the ocean. It runs east-to-west and is totally unseeable when driving south.

There is another buggy-killing cliff down toward the Rip, close to the ocean, also running east/west but this one is totally unseeable when driving north.

Stu and I have put up some markers but they’ll won’t last. I guarantee that driving front-first over one of those – even as slow at 10 mph – will put anyone not belted in through the windshield … even backseat folks.  

I wouldn’t even mess around down there after dark for the next couple days, as we have above-usual high tides, astronomically and also wind-wise.

Friday, September 16, 2016: The wind didn’t feel like backing off the way it should have. I’m not sure if there’s something in the air keeping it frisky.

As is my custom with or without NE winds, I headed to Holgate – which does, in fact, take south winds nicely, at least at the far south end where those winds are generally offshore – or at least blowing back-to-front, as I stand there plugging and netting bait.

While all I had to show for a goodly number of casts was one bluefish, I saw a very impressive 4 to 5-pound fluke taken inside the Rip – though it was taken by a sharpie. There were also a goodly number of small flatties caught during outgoing tide. I think the inside-Rip calm zone will be fully packed tomorrow with an array of fluke-seekers and such. The back cut will be boat-heavy. Play nice, please.

Holgate’s far south end is still building (gaining sand) at an impressive rate. It’s not only enlarging but it’s become such a fine and wide area upon which to just hang out, relaxedly. I’m tempted to stay through tide one of these days. That means a solid 12 hours to do it right. I won’t suggest camping there since I think that’s verboten. As to who’s checking …

There was a bit of a mullet runs care for those of us netting. After a few decent days of netting, today was a near total turn-off.  And more than a few of us put in some major water-gazing time. While I’m semi-certain the mullet will resume running again real soon, we have had runs that barely start – then turn off for the duration. Perish the thought.

On a more upbeat bait note, there is a string flow of rainfish, spearing and baby bunker. Those played into an afternoon push of cocktail blues near the Rip. The few folks fishing the action had near nonstop hooking. Stu D. got himself a slew – to launch his famous fall bluefish-fest.



Marine Mammal Stranding Center Working to Determine Cause of Death 

Sea Isle City, New Jersey (September 16, 2016) – Staff with the Marine Mammal Stranding Center were called to the 20th Street beach in Sea Isle City Friday afternoon, where a deceased, young male humpback whale washed ashore.  Bob Schoelkopf, Founding Director of the MMSC, says the whale is approximately 33 feet long, weighing about 20 tons.  While the cause of death remains unknown at this time, Schoelkopf says that there are no apparent injuries, although the whale appears to be somewhat emaciated.  He estimates that the whale has been dead for several days. Members of the city’s Public Works Department are assisting the MMSC with removing the whale from the waterline.  Schoelkopf says the whale will likely remain on the beach overnight before being moved tomorrow morning.  Staff from the MMSC will take samples in an attempt to determine how the whale died. 

The Marine Mammal Stranding Center is New Jersey’s only facility dedicated to the rescue of sick and injured marine mammals and sea turtles, and relies on donations for its rescues and rehabilitations. Those who would like to help the MMSC feed and provide care and medicine to their rescues can visit their website to become a member, adopt a seal, or to just give a donation. www.mmsc.org


John ValickasRemember When Long Beach Island ( LBI ) ...

Fireplace of the Corinthian Yacht and Gun Club...1910
Perhaps the most elaborate fireplace ever built on LBI, this structure, when built in 1904, featured dozens of artifacts of the early days of marsh gunning in the area.
Into the wet mortar were pressed models of square rigged ships, elaborately carved and painted duck and goose decoys, calvary swords and eel spears.
Also, clay pigeons, tobacco pipes, shotgun shells, poker chips, silver dollars and whiskey flasks were part of the fireplace.
In 1984, the building on the corner of Marine and Beach in Beach Haven, was sold to developers.
The items were pried out of the fireplace by family members before the wrecking ball took the structure down.

Fishermen, you are not included. The its “Our Ocean Conference” starts today

john-kerryThe State Department holds the “Our Ocean Conference” today, where the President will announce the closure of cantons and seamounts off of the coast of New England. I went to the Our Oceans website, which you can access byclicking here. You can read the agenda by clicking here. There is also a live stream that you can watch by clicking here. You can read the bio’s of keynote speaker by clicking here. Many will be familiar to you, and after reviewing the material, I can assure you this is their ocean, not yours. 09:58


Published by Joe Simonds under 
Last updated on: August 23, 2016

world's most expensive fishing tournaments

Have you ever participated in a saltwater fishing tournament before?

Well, these five saltwater fishing tournaments should certainly be on your bucket list if you love to compete while fishing.

Growing up fishing in Boca Grande and Little Gasparilla Island as a young kid, I always thought that the annual “World’s Richest Tarpon Tournament” held in the Boca Grande Pass was one of the most expensive fishing tournaments in the world…

Not to downplay that tournament by any means, but the total pot money in some of these other tournaments can even make the Boca Tarpon tournament look small today.

I was blown away with some of the overall prize money (and cost to enter) in some of these fishing tournaments below.

These are five of the most expensive saltwater fishing tournaments in terms of entry fee and overall winning pot. Read on and discover how lucrative participating in high-stakes saltwater fishing tournaments can be, and don’t hesitate to leave a comment if I missed any big money saltwater fishing tournaments.

5. Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic

most expensive saltwater fishing tournaments
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Breathe Easy with a best of a marlin in an Emerald Coast Marlin Classic.
Image source: www.marlinmag.com

Started in 2003 and held at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort’s Baytowne Marina, this fishing tournament ranked fifth on the “Big Money Tournament” by Marlin magazine.

Authorized by the World Billfish Series and a part of the Offshore World Championship, this event gives every angling team a chance to grab a spot at winning a big pay-off, while still allowing everyone to enjoy lots of family-friendly activities (nightly entertainment, fireworks, live music, etc).

With cash categories for dolphin, tuna, and wahoo as well as individual fisherman trophies, competing anglers have a multitude of ways to venture their claim on Destin fishing tournament history!

Setting a standard for world-class sportfishing tournaments along the Gulf Coast, it has once again taken the spotlight as its most recent annual fishing competition, held last June 22-26, has an overall record fleet of 85 boats that caught a total of 55 billfish during the 2.5 days of fishing.

Twenty-three blues (with four boated), 12 sailfish, and 20 white marlin were recorded, representing an overall release ratio of 92.7 percent. The 86 gamefish caught totaled 6,983.3 pounds, tallied by 46 tuna, 25 Mahi, and 15 wahoo.

A Destin-based Viking 54, Rise Up, earned the biggest chunk of the record with $1.95 million in overall prize money, scaled the largest blue marlin of the tournament, and became the Grand Champion.

Tournament Director Adam Alfonso said that what they accomplished for their 14th-anniversary celebration has “broken the record” and gave everyone, not just the organizers and participants but even the spectators, a fabulous week.

“Most boats ever, largest overall purse ever at nearly $2 million, plus new tuna and wahoo marks. Wow, what a fabulous week, matched by beautiful weather and outstanding fishing. I can’t wait to shatter still more records next summer,” he shared.

The Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic tournament has a base entry fee of $5,000 or $71,561 per team with optional entries. Similarly, there are no entry limits as to the number or size of both private and charter boats.

Next year’s ECBC is scheduled for June 21-25, 2017. Join and have a blast!

To have a glimpse of the highlights of the recently concluded 14th Annual ECBC Tournament, watch the video below or visit em HERE.

Pretty amazing tournament!

It would be fun just to hang out at the weigh-in!

4. Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament

June means big blue marlin are lurking the waters off of Morehead City, North Carolina – a season that’s so perfect for most marlin fishing enthusiasts and summer fanatics. If you’re one of them, you better NOT miss next year’s action at the Big Rock Blue!

This week-long event is one big-boat tourney that pays big bucks, too…

Established in 1957, Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament lets every competing angler out there to fish for four out of six days. Recently, the 58th Big Rock was held on June 10-18 and declared the following as the WINNERS:

Being on top of the 174 boats in the 58th Big Rock is no joke, congrats to Ashley Lauren fishing team, reeling in a 621.4-pounder to take the lead for good and winning $662,995 from the Big Rock’s record $1,914,100 purse.

Though participating this fishing game may cost you about $19,000 (total entry fee for all levels), this doesn’t only give you a chance to bring home the pot money but also lets you have a blissful week-long summer vacation with your loved ones and fishing buddies and yes, meet new friends that love fishing as much as you do.

The 59th Annual Big Rock tourney is on June 9-17, 2017. Mark your calendar!

3. The Mid-Atlantic Saltwater Fishing Tournament (MA500)

The million-dollar-plus tourney started in 1991 and will hold its 25th anniversary this August 21-26, 2016 at the Canyon Club Resort Marina in Cape May, New Jersey.

With a total of $2,812,010 payout in 2015, this fishing competition has a unique way of having various categories and optional jackpots intended to share out the prize money into the hands of more winners.

Having a base entry of $2500, you can add up certain categories and levels of your choice to multiply your chances of winning. Participating anglers can target billfish, tuna or other qualifying species during the three of five possible days of fishing, while also enjoying lots of fun-filled hospitality and dock parties.

In 2015, a total of 543 billfish caught by 139 boats with each fishing for three days — having a release rate of 96 percent (523 billfish). There were actually seven winners who received a payout of more than six figures and 12 winners received payouts of $40,000 or more.

To note, Michael Savino of Brooklyn, NY took home whooping pot money of $714,259 for the heaviest white marlin at 77 lbs. Wow!

Check out what Mid-Atlantic $500,000 MA500 has in store for you and your buddies this year:

2. White Marlin Open (WMO)

Join this tourney with the largest participating fleet of over 300 boats every year. Billed as the world’s largest billfish tournament, White Marlin Open lets you explore the so-called “White Marlin Capital of the World,” Ocean City, Maryland and likewise rewards you with huge dollar payout!

The 43rd Annual White Marlin Open will be held on August 8-12, 2016 at Harbour Island Marina – seeing some of the best billfish crews and personalities from around the East Coast while also attracting thousands of spectators. Base entry fee is $1,000 per boat on or before June 1st; hence, $1,300 after the stated period.

#GirlPower: This Lady Angler Is A Champ!

In 2015, 308 boats vied for their share of a total winning pot exceeding $3.5 million. Cheers to Cheryl McLeskey (owner of the Virginia Beach Fishing Center) and her team aboard Backlash for reeling in a 94-pound white marlin – bringing home an estimated prize of $1.1 million.

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Photo Source: White Marlin Open Facebook Page

This winning haul was the third largest ever weighed at the White Marlin Open – having the tournament record still at the 99-pound white marlin caught in 1980.

1. Bisbee’s Black & Blue Marlin Tournament

Bisbee tournaments are tagged as the big daddy of all fishing tourneys.

Bringing hundreds of anglers around the world to Cabo San Lucas for 35 years, this tourney is designed to have entry categories that cater to anglers of all levels. With its growing number of participants year after year, this was, and remains, the largest payout in sportfishing tournament history.

Base entry fee is at $5000, while a whooping “across the board” fee amounts to $71,500. Despite its being pricey, many anglers, captains and crew from all 50 states as well as up to 18 other countries are taking the challenge to be the top boat to haul the seven-figure jackpot.

The Bisbee family still runs the Black & Blue, which started back in 1981. Thanks to Bob Bisbee, the great man behind this angling legacy that offer some of the highest cash payouts in the world of sport fishing competition and continue to change lives by making someone a millionaire by just catching a fish!

In 2006, the prize money totaled $4,165,960 – the largest payout in the fishing tournament history, kudos to Bad Company 55 for taking home $3,902,997.50.


As always, the Bisbee’s team encourages everyone to “fish, party, and make time for the family!”

Whether there’s a six- or even seven-figure prize or just a simple trophy on the line, tournaments always bring out the best in competitive fishing, not to mention its amazing way to give back to charitable institutions and conservation-oriented organizations around the world.

Every angler is encouraged to join any fishing tournaments and events, at least once in their lives, and win lots of F’s: fishing frenzy, fun, and friends.


There are some pretty rich (aka expensive and high-stakes) saltwater fishing tournaments out there!

But what an amazing way to participate in something you love, compete against some of the best anglers in the world, and have a chance at winning hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of dollars.

What is the most expensive fishing tournament you have ever fished?

Did we miss any?

Let us know in the comments.

P.S. Feel free to TAG your fishing networks or SHARE this to them. I’m sure they’ll love this list, too!

P.P.S. Join the 50,000+ Salt Strong members and take your fishing experience to the next level. Get our free saltwater fishing tipof the week and best fishing videos emailed right to your inbox. Click Here to join the “Salt Strong” Tribe today.

Fish On!


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