Our Tournament

2022 will mark the tournament’s 45th anniversary.

The Ladies Tarpon Fly Tournament represents a rich history of women who love the sport of salt water fly fishing. Since 1977, female anglers have come from all over the world to fish for tarpon in the shallow waters off Islamorada and Florida Bay during their famous migration. The Ladies Tarpon Fly Tournament is a fly fishing invitational tournament that has attracted a host of premier female fly anglers and guides throughout its history. Whether your favorite species is tarpon or you are looking to put another feather in your cap, the tournament participants range from the expert to the novice. 2022 will mark the tournament’s 45th anniversary. The tournament will be held June 15th-17th, with a kickoff event the evening of the 14th. Entry fee of $850.00 includes, for you and your guide, the kick off event, daily breakfasts, afternoon hor d’oeuvres, a social event and awards banquet. Awards will be given for various categories including Grand Champion and Best New Angler and will consist of artwork by notable wildlife artists, as well as well as the latest fishing tackle and gear from the best brands in the industry. The angler is responsible for paying her guide. This is a competition that connects women in the sport, forms new friendships and creates lasting memories all while pursuing one of the world’s greatest fighting fish – the silver king!

Space is limited and this tournament will be full. If you are interested in a fun, challenging tournament in the beautiful Florida Keys, please complete the form on our contact page.

2022 Schedule of Events

Monday, June 13

6:00 PMTournament KickoffThe Nest at the Green Turtle
Heavy Hors d’oeuvres/Cash Bar
6:30 PMPre-tournament briefing for anglers and guides

Tuesday, June 14

5:30 AMBreakfast at LoreleiLorelei
6:00 AM Team 1 Departure, Lines In
6:15 AMTeam 2 Departure, Lines In
6:17 AMTeam 3 Departure, Lines In
3:00 PMLines Out

Islamorada Fishing Club -
Hors d’Oeuvres/Cash Bar
5:00 PMAll Boats MUST BE IN

Wednesday, June 15

5:30 AMBreakfast at LoreleiLorelei
6:00 AM Team 2 Departure, Lines In
6:15 AMTeam 3 Departure, Lines In
6:17 AMTeam 1 Departure, Lines In
3:00 PMLines Out

Islamorada Fishing Club -
Hors d’Oeuvres/Cash Bar
5:00 PMAll Boats MUST BE IN
5:00 PMAnglers Meeting/Anglers RequiredIslamorada Fishing Club

Thursday, June 16

5:30 AMBreakfast at LoreleiLorelei
6:00 AM Team 3 Departure, Lines In
6:15 AMTeam 1 Departure, Lines In
6:17 AMTeam 2 Departure, Lines In
3:00 PMLines Out

Islamorada Fishing Club -
Hors d’Oeuvres/Cash Bar
5:00 PMAll Boats MUST BE IN
6:30 PMDinner and Awards Presentation Lorelei Back Bar

Tournament Venues

Islamorada, FL

Islamorada is a true village with a laid back and relaxed atmosphere.

A to go breakfast is available each morning for anglers and guides at the Lorelei starting at 5:30am.
Square Grouper | Great new dinner spot in Islamorada and sponsor of The Ladies Tarpon Fly Tournament!
Green Turtle Restaurant | One of the best dinner options in Islamorada and a key sponsor of the Ladies Tarpon Fly Tournament!
Trading Post of Islamorada | Great option for snacks/boat sandwiches.
Bayside Gourmet | Great option for snack/boat sandwiches. Pizza and pasta. Delivery after
5pm.
Keys Roots Juice | For your fresh pressed juice fix!
Stone Oven Pizzeria | Pizza and sandwiches delivered!
Lazy Days | An Islamorada icon. Reservations recommended.
Morada Bay | Best sunset in town. Dining on the beach. Reservations recommended.
Publix | Islamorada has a Publix!!!!

2022 Tournament Rules

The following LTFT Rules, as amended June 16, 2021, shall govern the 2022 Ladies Tarpon Fly Tournament:

TERRITORY, START AND TIME

  1. All team entries are by invitation only.
  2. OFFICIAL HEADQUARTERS: Islamorada Fish Club (IFC)
  3. Angler will sign her own name on ‘Start Ledger’ at the Lorelei each morning.
  4. Anglers may leave Lorelei starting at 6:00 AM and fishing may begin immediately.
  5. All boats must depart from and return to Lorelei. No trailering to different launch sites is permitted.
  6. First wave will begin at 6:00 AM, second wave at 6:15 AM, third wave 6:17 AM.
  7. Guides are advised that if it appears too dark to leave, they are responsible for the safety of their anglers, themselves and equipment. Any boat without running lights can not depart the dock until 6:15 AM. Running lights must remain on until 6:15 AM whether running or stationary.
  8. Lines out at 3:00 PM. Any fish hooked prior to lines out may be fought until released or lost. Any boat fishing after lines out time must notify The Lorelei and/or the Chairwoman. A relay message through another person is acceptable.
  9. All boats MUST check in at IFC with the scorekeeper by 5:00 PM each day.
  10. Inclement weather – start time on any day may be delayed by the chairwoman/guides committee in the event of imminent or dangerous weather. In the event of severe weather, i.e. tropical storm, the tournament committee may shorten the number of tournament fishing days.

MEASURING AND SCORING

  1. 100 points per release. 300 points per caught fish.
  2. Fish may be submitted for points as either a “Release” or “Caught Fish”. A “Weight Fish” is a tarpon weighing more than 70lbs.
  3. To constitute a legal release, the knot connecting the fly line to leader must enter the rod tip. The boat does not need to be in neutral for a release fish. A release fish is worth 100 points. At this point the fish can be broken off or fought.
  4. To constitute a legal caught fish, the angler must fight the fish to the boat and the guide must disengage the hook. Points are earned by taking a digital image of the fish clearly demonstrating that the Angler or Guide has complete control over the fish by hand or lip gaff. The image should show as much of the fish as possible. If necessary, the length should be verified with the four foot stick, as measured along the side (lateral line) from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail. A caught fish is worth 300 points.
  5. All fish must be a minimum of 48 inches. All weight fish must be a minimum of 70lbs.
  6. After hooking a fish and completing the release point scoring procedure, the Angler and Guide may then decide to score the fish as a Weight Fish. Their decision is to be taken based on judging the size of the fish in the water. It is considered unsportsmanlike for an Angler or Guide to partially lift a fish from the water to estimate weight. No use of measuring tape to approximate the weight of the fish prior to committing a strap to that fish. In other words a decision must be made prior to any actual measurement takes place (while the fish is in the water) whether or not to use a strap on the fish.
  7. Anglers may submit no more than three Weight Fish for scoring during the Tournament. As described below, Weight Fish must be hooked, fought, and brought to hand or lip gaff to earn points. Fish shall be scored and points shall be earned in compliance with State of Florida fishing regulations in force at the time of the tournament.
  8. The Tournament Grand Champion shall be the Angler who accumulates the most points during the three days of fishing. In addition, the Tournament may also recognize point totals or fish caught by other finishers in individual awards.
  9. The Largest Tarpon Award shall be the Angler who has caught the largest “Weight Fish”. If the Angler and Guide decide to score a fish as a Weight Fish, the Angler and Guide must complete the following procedure as quickly as possible: 1) Using the measuring tape, the length of the fish shall be measured along its side (lateral line) in inches from the tip of the lower jaw to the center of the fork of the tail with such length recorded on the Catch and Release Form, 2) The girth shall be measured using a zip-tie “strap” which shall be placed around the widest part of the fish, perpendicular to the lateral line, and closed snugly, 3) The Angler or Guide must then take a digital photograph of the fish (the Strap Photo) showing as much of the fish as possible with the strap on the fish, 4) The strap should be slipped off and secured with the sticky tape. If for any reason, the Weight Fish scoring procedure is not completed, but the release/caught fish point procedure is completed, then the Angler is still entitled to release/caught points for successfully capturing the fish.
  10. Any potential Weight Fish measured and scored less than 70 pounds shall be awarded caught points, but that fish shall be counted towards the Angler’s three Weight Fish limit.
  11. At the conclusion of each fishing day, the Angler and Guide must submit a signed Catch and Release Form to the Tournament judges whether or not any fish have been caught. The Catch and Release Form shall include times for catch and release of all fish, plus measurements of each Weight Fish released. Any Angler who has caught fish must turn in the sized and taped strap from any Weight Fish. Finally, Strap Photos for each fish caught must be shown to the scorekeeper. These items must be turned in by 5:00 PM, or the Angler will be not be allowed any points from fish that day. The Tournament judges may waive the 5:00 PM rule for boat breakdowns or unusual circumstances.
  12. The official weight of a Weight Fish shall be calculated by the Tournament Scorekeeper. The strap shall be marked, cut, and the strap length (fish girth) measured in inches. The weight shall be determined to the nearest pound using the online tarpon weight calculator on the BTT website.
  13. For purposes of measuring and scoring, the Tournament shall issue to each Angler and Guide a measuring packet including: a four foot stick, a measuring tape, three zip-tie “straps,” a roll of sticky tape, and three Catch and Release forms. The Angler or Guide shall provide a digital camera.

PENALTIES

  1. Failure to sign in before departure will result in a 100-point penalty which shall be strictly enforced.
  2. Failure to turn in score sheet by 5:00 PM each day will result in a 100-point penalty for each infraction which shall be strictly enforced.
  3. The Tournament operates on the honor system, and as such, relies on the integrity of its participants to guard its reputation as one of the premier fly fishing tournament in salt water. Any Angler or Guide found to have knowingly or willfully violated this, or another tournament’s rules, may not be issued an invitation.

TACKLE SPECIFICATIONS

  1. Only one-handed rods and single action reels, designed specifically for fly casting, will be eligible. The butt may not extend more than 4 inches below the reel seat. The rod may not be altered after the fish is hooked.
  2. All leaders must meet IGFA standards. Tippet will be 16 pound Mason provided by the tournament.
  3. Only artificial lures may be used. Lures must be of single hook construction only and hook must not exceed 2-3/4 inches overall.
  4. Leaders may not exceed 15 feet in length and must contain not less than 15 inches of Tournament approved tippet material between the knots. A shock tippet may be of nonmetallic or metallic material, may not exceed 12 inches including the knots, and must be tied directly to the Tournament approved tippet.
  5. A release gaff may be used and must be no more than two feet long with ropes or straps not to exceed 12 inches. Fish may be lip gaffed only.

GENERAL RULES

  1. All team entries are by invitation only.
  2. Only fly casting will be permitted.
  3. Angler, unaided, must cast, set the hook, fight and bring the fish to where the leader/hook can be taken. Any other person touching the reel, rod or line will automatically disqualify the entry. At no time during the tournament can a guide cast or retrieve.
  4. Handling a fish unnecessarily will disqualify entry.
  5. A broken rod, above the reel seat, will not disqualify entry.
  6. Trolling and chumming are not permitted. Casting in the chum line of another boat is not permitted. Fishing in residential canals and/or behind homes or at marinas for “pet” tarpon is not permitted.
  7. All entries must be approved by the tournament committee.
  8. The tournament committee reserves the right to inspect tackle and test lines at any time. Committee decisions shall be final.
  9. The angler meeting is MANDATORY for anglers.
  10. Each angler shall be accompanied by a non-relative fishing guide for hire, registered by the U. S. Coast Guard. Guide shall have all necessary permits/licenses including Everglades National Park Permit if guide enters this area at any time to fish. Should guide not be able to show the required documentation, angler’s catch will not be valid.
  11. Guides must supply tournament with Certificate of Insurance.
  12. All IGFA, FFW, Federal and State of Florida rules and regulations will be followed except where tournament rules supersede them. It is the responsibility of each angler and guide to know these rules.
  13. Any fish under 4 feet in length is not eligible for a release. A tarpon gauge will be provided for each angler. These must be returned.
  14. No ladder or heightening device which extends more than 4 feet above the gunwale of the boat is allowed.
  15. Both angler and guide must remain in the boat during the fight and release of a fish unless accidentally pulled overboard by the tarpon. No assistance may be given to the angler, other than by the guide who handles the boat and releases the fish.
  16. The length of the skiff may be not more than 20 feet.
  17. All grievances must be submitted in writing to the official scorekeeper(s) by 5:00 PM on the same day as the alleged infraction. GRIEVANCES MUST BE SIGNED.
  18. In the case of a tie, the last scoring event occurring first shall be judged winner.
  19. Under extraordinary circumstances a tournament boat may have one non-assisting passenger a board, subject to prior permission of the chairwoman is required.
  20. All recognized courtesies and sportsmanship between teams must be observed at all times.
  21. The policy of the tournament is that the first skiff to reach a spot is entitled to fish there. The guides committee strongly recommends strict observation of all recognized courtesies and sporting practices between skiffs. This includes giving way and sufficient room to other boats in an area that typically accommodates more than one skiff under normal fishing conditions. Understanding that the Florida Keys waters are fished by many skiffs each day, it is considered unsportsmanlike and a rules violation to have a spot “saved” by another boat.
  22. There will be no fishing or staking above the “pocket” of Buchanan Bank.
  23. No angler or guide may scout for fish using aircraft during the period from the beginning of fishing on the first day until the end of fishing on the last day.
  24. No cell phone use by Angler or Guide to gather or share fishing information during lines-in hours.

GOVERNANCE AND DISPUTES

  1. The Tournament shall be conducted by the Chairperson and a volunteer committee of Anglers and various sub-committees as set from time to time.
  2. The standing committees shall consist of: 1) a Tournament Committee, composed of the Chairperson and five (5) current LTFT Anglers ; 2) a Guides Committee, composed of active Guides; and, 3) an Arbitration Committee, composed of distinguished former Anglers and Guides who no longer participate in the Tournament.
  3. There shall be a Kick-Off event at 6pm on the Monday evening prior to the Tournament. As a part of the Kick-Off, there shall be a Captains’ Meeting at 6:00pm when the LTFT Rules shall be reviewed and explained. One member of the Angler and Guide team must attend the Captains’ Meeting or the team shall be assessed a 100 point penalty. In the event of an emergency or other unforeseen circumstances, the Tournament Committee may waive the penalty if one team member in unable to attend the Captains’ Meeting.
  4. There shall be an annual Anglers’ meeting after fishing on the Wednesday of the Tournament week to conduct any business of the Tournament. Anglers are required to attend and are entitled to vote on matters that come before the group. The Chairman will appoint a Tournament and Guides Committee to review the Rules for the next year’s Tournament. Not including the Chairperson, the Tournament Committee shall consist of five (5) current LTFT Anglers. The Chairperson and the Tournament Committee will issue the invitations for the following year. Anglers at this meeting may propose changes to the LTFT Rules. This annual meeting is the only time that proposed amendments or changes to the LTFT Rules may be made. Any proposed changes to a LTFT Rule will only be considered after an affirmative vote of two-thirds (2/3) or more of the Anglers in attendance at the meeting. If a two-thirds or more vote is achieved, the Tournament and Guides Committees will review the proposed change(s) and, only after another affirmative two-thirds (2/3) or more vote by the joint committee, will the change(s) be adopted. Consideration and vote by the joint committee shall take place prior to the following year’s invitations being issued. Suggestions and comments on Tournament operations or the Rules are encouraged.
  5. The Guides Committee is responsible for organizing meetings of the Guides to clarify LTFT and/or IGFA rule interpretation, discuss starting and boating procedures, emphasize sporting practices, and other matters as may be required.
  6. All grievances concerning the Rules shall be in writing, signed and submitted to the Tournament Judges by 5:00 pm on the day of the alleged infraction. Oral or anonymous grievances, or those filed after 5:00 pm, will not be considered. The matter in dispute shall be referred to the Tournament Committee who shall determine the proper treatment of the issue. If the decision of the Tournament Committee is not accepted by either party to a dispute, the matter will be referred to the Arbitration Committee whose judgment shall be final and binding on the parties. All decisions by the committees shall be final and irreversible as of 5:00 pm on the last day of fishing.

Sponsors

The tournament is so fortunate to feature Florida Keys Outfitters as our title sponsor. Visit
floridakeysoutfitters.com for all of your fly fishing needs.

Please support all of our generous sponsors.

Friends of the Ladies Tarpon Fly Tournament

A heartfelt special thank you to all of our exceptionally talented artists! The Ladies Tarpon Fly Tournament is proud to feature such amazing and unique artwork as prizes for our anglers and guides. Please support our generous friends!

2022 Angler & Guide List

AnglerGuide
Amy BennettAlex Zapata
Lilly BertramDerek Rust
Jennifer BritoJack Given
Betsy BullardTommy Locke
Shannon ConstantinidesWill McCabe
Katie Fiedler AndersonJeremy Fisher
Kaylee FordyceBenny Blanco
Kimberly GuidoSteve Thomas
Holly HattanSteve Friedman
Elizabeth HartJeff Johnson
Elizabeth JohnsonSteven Tejera
Deb KapustaPauly Ross
Candace KernJayce Chamizo
Sharon LeissnerBrett Greco
Miree LeeRaul Montoro
Christina LegutkiAlonzo Sotillo
Wesley LockeAndy Thompson
Meredith McCordCamp Walker
Alexandra McNealConner Flamm
Jenn ParkerLincoln Rodriguez
Shandra RummelDrew Moret
Susan SmithwickRandy Stallings
Jillian TisdaleCraig Brewer
Ashley WeberRyan Phinney
Michelle White Mike Alfano