These aren’t quite what you thought when they asked you to be in their fishing tournament. Check out the madness that we call fishing.
We all know that one guy that can pitch a jig into the toilet and pull out a trophy. Once he was finished out-fishing the rest of us, he had to move on to bigger and better things. When you add in all the others like him, you’ve got to find a place to put them all.
That’s how tournament fishing got its start.
Since they were bound to become as popular as they are some folks felt the need to spice things up a bit as a way to renew relevance. Some of the things that they’ve come up with along the way are listed right here. I mean, have you ever heard of number five?
Scroll down and see if you can recognize any of these wonderful and wacky fishing derbies from around the U.S. and the world.
1. Annual Ice Fishin’ Derby, Maine
One look at the title and you may think that this is nothing special, but upon closer inspection this great idea that was thought up in a college dorm room has found real popularity among those in the Pine Tree State.
When Wes Ashe and his pals dreamed it up while attending the University of Maine they kept it simple starting with the name: The Annual Ice Fishin’ Derby. The rules are as thus- Any fish. Any water. Any time. It takes place from December 1 through March 31 and includes 28 different kinds of fish that exist in the waters of Maine.
All entries are via e-mail. Anglers must take a photo of caught fish beside a ruler (to show length), and a derby card that proves the angler actually caught it and is an active derby participant. At the end of the derby the angler with the longest fish in each of the 28 species is the winner.
2. Any Video Gaming Fishing Tournament
You know that thing where you catch a whole bunch of beautiful bass, pike, muskie, trout, marlin, tarpon, redfish, salmon, etc, but you never once actually boat a real fish? Welcome to the virtual world.
Still in all there are many very good video fishing games and those who are very good at those games get to show off and vie for the crown of who’s best. Usually the person playing is only playing the machine, but at least they can say that their fishing in a tournament I guess.
3. International Eelpout festival
For almost 40 years the little town of Walker, Minnesota plays host to one of the liveliest festivals concerning one of the ugliest fish ever seen: the eelpout.
When you can see folks gather by the thousands and descend on frozen Leech Lake for fishing, drinking, ice bowling, and -ahem- dancing girls, you may just want to be a part of it all. And since your drilling a big hole in the ice, why not jump in like these guys?
4. World Carp Classic, Czech Republic
With all due respect to the folks who take this seriously, and there are some serious prizes and bragging rights here, we never thought that a fish that is considered an invasive ‘trash’ fish would garner so much attention.
Now turn your eyes to Lake Novomlynska, Czech Republic, the home of the World Carp Classic. There’s a minimum of £70,000 or about $80,000 up for grabs and that’s just for starters. With more than a dozen prize categories you’ll be a sure thing to cash in, or will you?
There are well over a hundred entries from 22 different countries registered, countries that take their carp fishing very seriously. With names like Radek, Rostislav, Vadim, and Zoltan you may as well give up now.
How can you go wrong with a name like Tunarama? Port Lincoln, South Australia hosts the event every year around January’s Australia Day celebration. Competitors not only get to brag about the size of their fish, but how far they can throw it as well.
Yes, I said throw it.
Tunas weighing from 18-22 pounds are thrown like the Olympic hammer throw for distance. The current record is 37.23 meters or about 122 feet! They also have a prawn throw, a kingfish toss, and just for the big boys the Pier Hotel keg roll.
It would have been fun to find a big fish lying tournament or maybe a best brag competition, but these few are enough for now.
As soon as we saw that we could fish against other fishermen, we wanted to try, and one of the best reasons was for it was good old fashioned green-backs and bragging rights. Even when we get in the boat with our best fishing buddy it’s all about first, most, and biggest and the guy or gal who catches those fish is official winner of the biggest smile!