Boat Parade - Fishing for St Judes

A conversation among Whalers
Jefecinco
Posts: 772
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 6:35 pm
Location: Gulf Shores, AL

Boat Parade - Fishing for St Judes

Postby Jefecinco » Fri Jul 13, 2018 10:10 am

Yesterday was the opening day of the St Judes Blue Marlin Fishing Tournament. Coincidentally we were at home when all the participants paraded through the Gulf Intercoastal Waterway in Gulf Shores, AL on their way to the fishing grounds.

I lost count of all the very large tournament fishing boats. Suffice to say they took over a half hour to get past our place. They ranged in size from a handful of quadruple Verado powered center consoles to dozens of multi story yachts of between fifty and perhaps 75 feet LOA. Three that I saw had four enclosed deck levels. All told the total value of the boats could have exceeded a couple of hundred million dollars. I doubt our annual income would pay for the fuel there boats will consume during the tournament.

This morning at about 6:30 a boat returned flying a Marlin pennant indicating a catch. The boat will probably win the prize for "First Fish". The estimated prize for the winning catch is $500,000. I can't begin to imagine the income required to support such a costly hobby.

I was disappointed that there was no Boston Whaler in the parade. I should have tagged along in our little Sport 13.

I don't recall the expected payout for St Judes Hospital but it will be sizeable.
Butch

msirof2001
Posts: 72
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 11:23 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Boat Parade - Fishing for St Judes

Postby msirof2001 » Fri Jul 13, 2018 1:53 pm

They would have been overturned or swamped by the wakes of the larger boats.
Current: 2017 Everglades 295cc, Previous1: 1995 Boston Whaler Outrage 21, Previous2: 1974 Sevylor Caravelle 3-man liferaft.

Masbama
Posts: 185
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 8:33 pm
Location: Mobile, Al

Re: Boat Parade - Fishing for St Judes

Postby Masbama » Fri Jul 13, 2018 2:09 pm

Saw some of the trailerable one rumbling down I-10 this week. Mostly towed by new duelie pickups. The vehicles and gas they use add another substantial amount of money needed.

Jefecinco
Posts: 772
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 6:35 pm
Location: Gulf Shores, AL

Re: Boat Parade - Fishing for St Judes

Postby Jefecinco » Sat Jul 14, 2018 9:48 am

On local TV news last night I learned the "small boats" were boats sporting logos and flags of some of the tournament sponsors such as Garmin and Contender. I'm sure the entry fee is too high for the center console fishermen.

It would be a sizeable task to land an angry 700 pound Blue Marlin into the cockpit of a center console. Once the fish was landed where would the anglers and crew ride. Those fish are dangerous to handle. Once the angler gets the fish close enough to the cockpit a deck hand wraps the leader around his gloved hand and assumes control of the fish. Then another deck hand sinks the gaff. This is happening while this angry fish is trying to escape with the use of it's formidable bill. Finally one of the hands kills the fish with a billy and when it stops struggling it's hauled aboard. It's a dangerous and ugly process but the hands on these mega-sports fishing boats know their business. When you're trying for a $500,000 prize there is no fooling around. Think NASCAR pit stop.

As of last night the largest fish weighed was 750 pounds but the final weigh-in will be at noon Sunday.
Butch

Jefecinco
Posts: 772
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 6:35 pm
Location: Gulf Shores, AL

Re: Boat Parade - Fishing for St Judes

Postby Jefecinco » Sun Jul 15, 2018 9:46 am

For anyone interested the Tournament ended last night with a winning fish that weighed 796.6 pounds. Katie Gonsoulin of Houma, LA boated a 640.8 pound Marlin that was 117 inches long. She fought the fish for ten hours. The fish was "wired", the wire leader wrapped around the deck hands hand, over a dozen times before it could be gaffed. I believe her fish was the fourth place winner. I'm sure she took top Lady Angler honors.

Over $107,000 was raised, so far, for St Judes Hospital.
Butch