[Crystal River, FL.–] Hurricane Irma’s lashing winds and roiled waters have done nothing to degrade the fishing along Florida’s Nature Coast. Sure, the Gulf and inshore waters got murky, …
Last Chance to Bid on a Winner in the Blazing Mako
By Sue Cocking, Guy Harvey Outpost Travel Journalist
Hall of Famer/fly-fishing pioneer Stu Apte is primed and ready to win the Blazing Mako Tournament and Festival this coming Father’s Day weekend at the Islander, a Guy Harvey Outpost in Islamorada. And you still have time to be part of Apte’s inshore fishing team guided by veteran flats master Captain Steve Thomas.
Bidding in the Blazing Mako auction to fish with Apte and Thomas will remain open until 10 p.m. June 17– the night before the June 18 inshore/offshore fishing contest. So far, the highest bid is $1,500. Surely you can top that for a great shot at winning the top prize of $10,000 cash.
Anglers will earn points for catching, photographing, measuring and releasing permit, bonefish, tarpon, snook and redfish using live bait, artificial lures or fly rod. Fishing conditions should be red hot only two days before the June full moon. With Apte coaching and Thomas manning the poling platform pointing out fish, how can you lose?
“I don’t know who the angler is, but I am going to help him,” Apte vowed. “If he’s a fly angler, he’ll be up on the casting platform and I’ll be on the console seat to back him up with a spinning rod. I am going to help however I can.”
Apte– who has held more than 44 saltwater light tackle and fly rod world records since the 1950s– doesn’t want to give TOO much away about his strategy for winning. But he allowed that the permit will probably be the toughest to score, while snook might be the easiest. Whatever the conditions, he has absolute confidence in Thomas’ fish-finding abilities, since the guide has been plying the Upper Keys’ back country waters practically every day from dawn till dusk for the last couple of months.
So enter your bid now at HERE, or step up at the Captains Meeting June 17 at 8 p.m. at the Islander Resort Trophy Room. And definitely plan to attend the Papa’s Pilar Fishing Seminar at the Angler House Marina beginning at 4 p.m. where you might be able to coax some tips from Apte, Thomas and other pros.
Proceeds from the Blazing Mako will benefit scholarships for students at the Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography at Nova Southeastern University.
For more information on the weekend-long event, visit www.blazingmako.com.
Sue Cocking chronicles the Guy Harvey Outpost travel and adventure experience in regular blog posts on GuyHarveyOutpostNews.com/. For 21 years, Cocking covered the full spectrum of outdoors adventure opportunities in South Florida and beyond for the Miami Herald, including fishing, diving, hunting, paddling, camping, sailing and powerboat racing. She is a certified scuba diver and holder of an IGFA women’s world fly fishing record for a 29-pound permit.
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