Islamorada Invitational Fall Fly Bonefish Tournament Set for Sept. 11-14

First-rate fly fishermen are to congregate Tuesday through Friday, Sept. 11-14, for the 37th year of the Islamorada Invitational Fall Fly Bonefish Tournament.

The elite annual challenge, called the “Fall Fly,” is a test of stealth for 25 skilled competitors who come from around the U.S. and as far away as London to participate.

Notable competitors in past years have included Flip Pallot, brothers Sandy Moret and Randy Moret, the late Billy Pate and acclaimed “Striptease” author and Miami Herald columnist Carl Hiaasen, a seven-time tournament grand champion.

The 2012 winner’s name is to join the exclusive roster of top-ranking anglers and grand champion guides such as Bill Knowles, Steve Huff, Tim Klein and George Hommell on the perpetual trophy prominently displayed at Florida Keys Outfitters.

The 2012 Islamorada Invitational Fall Fly Bonefish Tournament kicks off with a 6 p.m. welcome reception and captains meeting Tuesday, Sept. 11, at the Islamorada Fishing Club next to the Lorelei Restaurant and Cabana Bar at mile marker 82 bayside.

Three days of fly-fishing for bonefish follow, and anglers must earn points for both weight and release fish to qualify for the win.

Each day starts at the Lorelei, where anglers are to breakfast before fishing and check in after the daily competition.

All bonefish to be weighed are to be brought to the Islamorada Fishing Club and then released alive. Bonefish weighing 8 pounds or more qualify for accrued points.

Entry fee is $1,000 per angler, which includes fishing, social and cocktail party functions, and awards. Original artwork valued at $5,000 is to be awarded to top anglers.

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