Sometimes it’s just perfect taking out the trailer boat for the day, but other times you might prefer to sharpen the reflexes with a spot of competitive fishing.
Testing your fishing skills against others gives you the opportunity to meet fellow enthusiasts, win prizes and spend more time on the water. Here are some ways you can take your boat fishing to the next level.
Join A Local Club
Whether you like to fish onshore, off shore or around the estuaries, there are likely to be local fishing or boat clubs to suit your sport. These regularly hold competitions in nominated locations and even tailor them for specific types of fishing, so make sure you sign up for notifications.
Being eligible to compete in fishing tournaments usually requires that your boat is registered, insured and compliant with local maritime regulations. It will also be expected that you carry a current and relevant fishing license or permit.
Many competitions run on a catch-and-release basis, so you’ll need to be ready to record your fish. Depending on the species and competition, points are awarded either on the length or weight of the fish caught.
Have a camera or your smart phone with you at all times, and set it to show the time stamp on every image.
Since it’s reasonably difficult to weigh a live fish accurately in a trailer boat, you will usually be required to have a plastic ruler, stick-on rule or a brag mat to measure length. The mat is kindest to the fish as it can be kept wet, so it stays cool and won’t harm the fish’s protective coating. Be prepared also to submit a photo of yourself, holding your catch.
Compete Online, Anytime
If your local club isn’t offering enough activity for your liking, you can always find fishing competitions being run online.
The are now a small number of Online fishing competitions which have been quite innovative in the way that they have used technology and cutting edge systems to remove the restrictions imposed by geographic boundaries.
This allows anglers who live hundreds of miles apart to participate in the same fishing tournament, pursuing the same prize while fishing in different bodies of water. All you have to do is sign up, go fishing, take photos of your catch then submit your entry online.
Websites, such as Get Fishing, run ongoing competitions so you can join in anytime when it suits you.
Others such as the Pirtek Fishing Challenge run an annual catch-and-release tournament, with all the proceeds going to worth charitys including the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia and the Peter Duncan Neurosciences Research Unit.
Once you get hooked on fishing competitions, you’ll find there are state and national comps running constantly – with enough cash and prizes that you might be able to give up your day job altogether…
Get the advantage with our guide to some of the best boating apps.