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Feb. 20-22: Backcountry Fly Championship. Islamorada. Tournament anglers are to compete to catch the most inches of snook and redfish on fly in a challenge where one inch equals one point. Awards are to be given to the grand champion and runner-up to grand champion, and anglers who catch the largest snook and redfish. The field is limited to 30 boats. Call 305-393-2156

March 17-20: March Merkin Permit Tournament. Key West. This charity flats-and-fly-only tournament has a twist. In addition to catch and release, anglers earn extra points for tagging their fish. The event is held at the Key West Harbour Yacht Club on Stock Island. Visit or call 303-888-4546.

May 18-21: Golden Fly Invitational Tarpon Tournament. Islamorada. Special flies, accurate casts and a bit of luck are the recipe for winning this prestigious challenge, using only a tournament-furnished tippet not greater than 16-pound test. Eligible tarpon must measure at least 48 inches in length to earn release points, and weigh at least 70 pounds for weight points.

June 1-6: Don Hawley Invitational Tarpon Tournament. Islamorada. The world’s top fly-rod anglers endure a five-d ay test of will and muscle, fishing Keys waters using fly tackle and either a 12- or 16-pound tippet. Named for the late fly fisherman and conservationist Don Hawley, the 40th annual tournament benefits the Guides Trust Foundation, assisting professional fishing guides and supporting backcountry fishery conservation programs. Visit

June 16-20: Gold Cup Tarpon Tournament. Islamorada. With founders including baseball great and avid fly-fisherman Ted Williams, this challenge appeals to “tarpon addicts,” and both experienced and novice anglers can compete. The event is limited to 25 anglers. Proceeds are to benefit children’s support groups in the Keys. Visit

July 13-16: Del Brown Permit Tournament. Key West. Anglers fly-fish on the flats in a challenge that honors the late angling pioneer Del Brown, who caught and released more than 500 permit off the Keys. Professionals and guides are allowed to compete as well. Visit

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