The top fishing competitions in the US are found all over the country, in both freshwater and saltwater. Fishing competitions in the US usually focus on catching one species at a time,such as marlin, catfish, muskie, bass and other trophy fish. Attending a competition is fun as a participant or a spectator. If you plan on signing up for one of these contests, it is important to be aware that the entry fee can be expensive. However, these fees go toward prizes you can win for catching the best fish.

Whether you want to go to the largest fishing tournament in the US or simply want to attend a smaller, local event, there are countless options to choose from. Fishing tournaments in the US can be found anywhere there is a large body of water that has a good supply of fish. Below, learn more about these competitions and how you can participate.

Yamaha Contender Miami Sportfish U.S. Fishing Tournament

When searching for the top fishing tournaments in the U.S., the Yamaha Contender tournament is by far one of the largest and most well-known. This large U.S. fishing competition takes place early in May each year at the Miami Beach Marina in Florida. Individual prize winners have been known to win nearly $40,000 in the past, making this tournament a huge draw for many participants. Read more about the Yamaha Contender Miami Sportfish Competition here, and learn how to get involved.

The Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) U.S. Fishing Competitions

It may not be the biggest bass fishing tournament you can find, but the FLW tournament series is the highest-paying bass competition. If you are looking for local bass fishing tournaments in Arkansas, this series may be a good choice for you. The series takes place over several weekends. Tournament events start in January, and continue on a monthly basis at different lakes throughout the state. The series ends with the Forest Wood Cup in August each year. Learn more about the FLW bass fishing tournaments here.

Big Rock Blue Marlin U.S. Fishing Tournament

You cannot look for the top ten fishing tournaments and events in the US without coming across the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament. Of the many fishing tournaments in the US, this is one of the most popular. Held off the coast of North Carolina in June each year, the tournament draws thousands of people. Unlike various other tournaments, you can win prizes for catching more than one species. Having the largest catch in any of these categories will make you eligible for prize money:

The biggest fishing tournament in the US will ultimately have the largest entry fee, as well. However, U.S. fishing competitions with the largest registration fees also have the biggest prize payouts. Prizes for this particular tournament vary, based on how many people enter and win. In the past, the record-breaking prize was more than $650,000.

The Bassmaster Classic Bass Fishing Tournament

Arguably the biggest bass fishing tournaments are part of the Bassmaster tournament series. Unlike other top fishing competitions in the US, these tournaments are usually only open to a select few. In the top tournaments of the series, anglers are generally only allowed to participate by invitation. However, that does not mean that aspiring fishermen cannot work their way toward this series. Participating in local bass fishing tournaments and getting sponsorships from fishing brands will help anglers gain the notoriety required to participate in these famous events. Learn more about how to compete here. It is important to note that in addition to the main tournament, the Bassmaster Classic, there are several other competitions in the series including:

  • Elite Series.
  • Bassmaster Opens.
  • A.S.S. Nation Series.
  • College Series.
  • High School Series.
  • Team Championship.

Big Bass Splash Bass Fishing Tournament

Those who want to participate in smaller, local bass fishing tournaments can sign up for one of the competitions in the Big Bass Splash series. These fishing competitions in the US take place from March through October in areas such as Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana and Texas. Here are some details about Big Bass Splash bass fishing competitions:

  • They not only have great prizes, but they also help charities.
  • As one of the biggest bass fishing tournaments,they are not as expensive to enter.
  • To participate for one day, the entry fee is just $160.
  • To enter for three days, the fee is $260.

Learn more about how to enter here.

Hawaiian International Billfish Fishing Competition

One of the top fishing competitions in the U.S. is held in Hawaii eachAugust. This is one of the top U.S. fishing tournaments, not only for its great location, but because it allows participants from other countries, as well. This makes the tournament somewhat different among other U.S. competitions. The tournament is also unique, because it is the second-oldest of the sport fishing competitions in the world. Like other fishing competitions in the US, the Hawaii Billfish Competition has implemented a catch-and-release point system as a conservation effort. Under this system, anglers still receive points for fish they let go. Learn more about the tournament here.

Largest Ice Fishing Tournament in the U.S.

While the most well-known fishing competitions in the US are located in warmer areas and take place during the summer, the Brainerd Jaycees $150,000 Ice Fishing Extravaganza occurs in January in Minnesota. This is one of the best local fishing tournaments in which you can participate. The Ice Fishing Extravaganza is known for being the largest charitable ice fishingevent in the world, which adds to its appeal. For serious Midwest anglers, a winter competition offers a nice break from the season. Learn more about registering here. Prizes for this competition include:

  • $40,000 in raffle prizes, which are drawn randomly.
  • $9,000 prize package giveaways.
  • Material prizes, such as ATVs, tackle, gift cards, ice fishing gear and more.
  • Individual prizes for the top 150 anglers who catch the largest fish.