Contestants

  • Each contestant will be a designated representative of one of the New Jersey Trout Unlimited Chapters or invited organizations.
  • Each will be accompanied during the fishing by an official scorer who is assigned by the organizers.
  • Contestants will be provided a lunch ticket courtesy of the event. Banquet tickets are not complementary.

Guests

  • Guests are permitted to view the contest from the banks of the stream.
  • Guests are welcome at the evening banquet with pre-registration and payment.
  • NO ALCOHOL is permitted on site other than that served by the insured bartender at the banquet.
  • Guest parking should be in the designated areas.
  • A lunch is available for guests and spectators at $10.00 / ticket

Equipment

  • Contestants will furnish their own fly-fishing equipment.
  • Only floating fly lines are permitted. Sinking leaders six feet or less in length are permitted. Maximum of 12’ of leader and tippet is permitted.

Event Flies

  • Any conventional fly pattern (dry, wet, nymph, streamer, etc.) may be used as long as it is no larger than size #6 and is 3x or shorter in length.
  • The fly may have one bead, cone or dumbbell eye set and may have non-lead wire used in the construction of the fly. Non-lead weight may be added to the leader. Molded metal heads (jigs) are not allowed. Tube flies are prohibited.
  • Flies must be tied on a single barbless hook or on a hook with the barb pushed down.
  • Contestants will choose the one fly (3 total of this pattern) that they will use the day of the contest. A different fly and a different pattern may be used in the Championship round of the event.
  • The organizers must approve the contestant’s fly selection before 8:30a.m. 
  • Repair of flies may only be done with the use of glue or any adhesive. Any re-tying of the fly with thread or fly tying materials is prohibited.
  • Broken hooks may be honed or filed to a usable sharpness via any sharpening tool.
  • Traditional strike indicators are allowed. Flies, even those with broken hooks, are not allowed to be used as an indicator. Only a single fly may be attached to the leader.

Fishing Procedure

  • Contestants and guides will observe fishing laws as outlined in the New Jersey Fish and Wildlife’s Game Code. These regulations govern the waters to be fished and will be strictly observed. Guides are present for scoring, rules enforcement and observation. Guides are not permitted to cast for contestants or fish. 
  • A three (3) person Rules Committee will be at the scoring area. The committee will rule on questions of the day. Violations will be considered only from the guide who is guiding the contestant.

Fishing area

  • All areas of the South Branch of the Raritan River just above the Route 513 bridge and down to the Vernoy Bridge up to the obelisk marking the southerly boundary of the property are fishable. These boundaries and the waters therein comprise the property owned by The Raritan Inn. No person may cross on the northerly (left bank facing downstream) bank of the river below the last mown fields for any reason. The area is out of bounds to all participants. Beats and times are designated and will be drawn prior to the start of fishing.
  • All trout species will be counted in the scoring. No other fish species will be counted. Guides are the official timekeepers and judges.
  • If a contestant’s fly becomes caught in brush or in a snag, it may be recovered and reattached to the leader. The contestant may continue fishing in the event. Scoring ends for the contestant when his official fly becomes irretrievably lost. Fishing ends when the fly is lost. That beat will then be “rested”.
  • At 8:30 a.m. contestants will draw for beats which consist of a specific section of river. There are a total of six fishable beats. Each contestant will draw for two beats. Round 1 will last from 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. The three top scoring anglers will proceed to the Championship Round. Fishing will begin again at 1:30 p.m. and continue until 3:00 p.m. Scores will NOT be tabulated by guides but brought to judges table. The fish species multiplier will be calculated on the length.  There is no multiplier for the 5 points of catching the fish.   

SCORING

  • The scoring procedures aspire to reduce the handling of native trout.
  • To be counted in the score, the catch and release of a trout must be witnessed by the guide. To be a legal fish, all trout must be hooked fairly in the area of the mouth. Snagging is strictly prohibited and will not be scored. 
  • Each contestant will be allowed to select up to eight (8) trout to measure each during preliminary and then final sections.  Six (6) of these fish will have a bonus score. All trout not selected for measurement will be released immediately, without removing them from the water.
  • Measurement of trout should be done by the guide while the trout is in the water. Trout are not to be removed from the stream for measuring. The guide will measure the trout with a ruler.
  • Any trout which measures 1/2" or greater is rounded to the next full inch by the guide. The guide should measure and record the exact fractional inch and allow the scoring committee to tabulate the final value. Fish are measured from the tip of the nose to the tip of the relaxed tail. The tail is not to be pinched.
  • A penalty will be assessed for any fish killed or ruled by the guide to be unable to survive. Each of these fish will be measured and the scored value of that trout will be subtracted from the angler’s score.
  • Scoring will be done after the results are delivered to the barn.  Neither guides, nor contestants will score the points.

Counting Points

  • 5 points per fish + 1 point per inch
  • Brook trout length gains a 1.4 multiplier
  • Brown trout length gains a 1.2 multiplier
  • Rainbow trout scored at 1.0