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Hiaasen Wins Islamorada Invitational Fall Fly Bonefish Tournament

Writer releases 10 bonefish, including 12-pounder.

For the sixth time, well-known and prolific Miami Herald editorial columnist and book author Carl Hiaasen was named grand champion angler at the Islamorada Invitational Fall Fly Bonefish Tournament that ended Sept. 16.

Hiaasen, from Vero Beach, Fla., was guided by bonefish master Captain Tim Klein of Islamorada. Hiaasen handily scored 10 releases along with three weight fish, including a plump 12.13-pounder that landed him the tournament’s largest bonefish award.

Miamian Paul Nute, poled by Captain Bou Bosso of Jupiter, Fla., was the tournament’s runner-up grand champion with nine releases. Nute landed last year’s grand champion award as a tournament newcomer.

First-time tournament competitor Roger Fernandez of Pinecrest, Fla., earned the event’s new angler award for his single successful release. He fished with Captain Mike Hutchinson of Homestead, Fla.

The 35th annual tournament drew a 16-boat field whose anglers released 55 bonefish including three weight fish.

Bonefishing was terrific in the Keys up until the first hard winds of the fall season, which started on the first of October. As soon as the winds calm, some of the best bonefishing of the year will be had in the fall season in the Keys.