Basic Rules

  1. Only catches made between declared fishing hours may be weighed in.
  2. Anglers checking in fish by motor vehicle must enter the Ingram Bay parking lot no later than 4:00 PM. If you are cutting it close, show your angler/entrant number to  a parking official as you arrive.  If you are coming by boat, you must be within the jetties entering Towles creek.
  1. When sending pictures of catches via email or text, you must have your entry tag  and number visible in the picture.
  2.  The weighmaster will make a final ruling on your species.  You must provide a clear picture of the fish and also a picture of the angler with the fish ( with the registration lanyard in view).  See additional instructions on how to take pictures to enable fish identification.  If the fish cannot clearly be distinguished from a fish species currently in your catch count, you will not be given credit for a different species.  If the fish looks totally different from any other fish you have caught, and the species cannot be determined, you will get credit for the fish labeled as “unknown” (until officials can further identify the species).
  1. Catch-n-Release photos must be sent in no later than 3:00 PM.
  2. An individual fish may be registered in only one of the four divisions.
  3. Fish will be measured and recorded by length to the ⅛” of an inch.  
  4. When measuring the length of a fish, the fish will be measured from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail (longest point).
  5. Ties in length will be broken by the first to weigh in under a specific species and division.
  6. All species must be caught with a hook and line (e.g.., netting and crab lines are not permitted).  Netting of large fish that are first hooked with hook and line is permitted.
  7. Protests.  We’d rather not deal with protests ….. but, if you want to file, it will cost $100 (non refundable), and must be supplied by 5:30 PM.  
  8. Tournament results shall be posted to the Live Leaderboard at this address:
  9. Pictures of catch and release entries must be submitted either to the [email protected] email address or texted to (804)-286-6041.  In the event we do not receive or acknowledge your transmittal, you may bring your pictures via a media device to the weigh station prior to 4:00 PM for download manually to a laptop.
  10. Clerical errors:  In the event your catch is not shown on the Live Leaderboard (or shown incorrectly), you must notify the weighmaster by no later than 5:00 PM.  You must provide your catch receipt issued at weigh in as evidence.
  11. Anglers should make their tournament angler ID badge with lanyard visible for pictures at weigh in and when submitting pictures via text or email.
  12. Only legal fish to keep in Virginia waters may be brought to weigh in.  Fish not meeting legal specifications may still be sent in via pictures (Lady, Youth, and Special Divisions), and then released carefully.
  13. Anglers are responsible for all applicable taxes on prizes received. 
  14. All participants shall allow Ingram Bay Marina, Fish Dispatch, USA, Special Angler, Inc. (501.c3),  and the Bay Bash Foundation the opportunity and right to photograph, film, videotape, and record anglers during the tournament and the awards ceremony and to use the angler’s name, voice and likeness without further compensation for advertising and promotion by said parties.
  15. All participants agree that Ingram Bay Marina, the Mid-county Rescue Squad and any sponsor of this tournament shall not be liable for injury, loss, or damage of any kind resulting from participation in this tournament or from the acceptance or use of any awarded prize.
  16. Tournament officials are not eligible to enter fish in this tournament.  Children of tournament officials are permitted to enter fish, but they will not be eligible to win any of the cash prizes (e.g., they are eligible to win 1st place trophies, but cash prizes would go to the next angler in line). 

Unique Division Rules

Lady and Youth

For those who have fished this tournament in the past, you will notice a change to the Lady and Youth Division rules. Due to staffing and infrastructure constraints, we’ve had to change the rules to enable accurate and timely processing of catches to meet the 6:30 PM deadline for the awards ceremony. For 2022, you will no longer be scored based on unique species catches, but rather the aggregate length based on catches entered into the Open Species Divisions. Your division is now being scored identical to the way it is done in the Grand Prize Division.

The basics:

  • Fish must be brought to weigh-in for official measurement.
  • Catch entries submitted in your name into the Open Species Division will automatically be applied to the Lady or Youth Division if you qualify. 
  • Please only submit a fish in your name if you participated in the catch.
  • Winners will be determined based on the total aggregate length of the qualifying ten (10) fish species. Only the longest fish of each unique species measured and scored will be applied to the aggregate length (identical rule as the Grand Prize Division) .
  • Your entries will count towards the Open Species Division and the Overall Grand Prize Division (giving you multiple opportunities to win).
  • Under no circumstances may the same fish be scored under multiple anglers.
  • Although you are no longer required to send in your pictures, for the enjoyment of others, we request that you do. We’ll post them to the Live Leaderboard as time permits during the day and during the week following the tournament.

Special Angler

Your rules have stayed the same for 2022:

  • Winners will be determined by the count of unique species submitted.
  • Pictures of catches may be submitted via text or email for scoring. 
  • Fish brought to weigh in and measured, will also be tabulated for the Open Species Divisions and the Grand Prize Division.
  • All ties will be broken by the registration time of your fish (based on the time stamp of your email or text time), or the weigh in time.

Measuring Fish

  1. Place the fish on its side with its jaw closed.
  2. Attempt to position the tail in a natural way to obtain length.
  3. Measure a straight line from the tip of the snout to the extreme tip of the tail fin.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. Can I check in fish multiple times during the day?  Answer:  Yes, and we encourage you to do so.  Ties are broken by time, so this strategy may also improve your standings.  We also want to avoid a mad rush at the end of the day.  This approach will also allow you to release fish that you want to weigh in, but will not be eating.
  2. If I catch a fish and weigh that fish in (e.g., a flounder), and catch a bigger fish later of the same species, can I weigh it in and replace my previous catch? Answer:  Yes.  The longer of the catches will be used in the rankings.  This is like taking the SAT multiple times. The system counts the higher score.  You can continue to catch that same species and weigh in those additional catches to the same species sub-division.
  3. Are crabs permitted as a species?  Answer:  No.  They are great swimmers and great to eat but not considered a fish.
  4. Are minnows considered a fish species permitted in the tournament?  Answer:  YesEach minnow type is distinct and will be treated as unique fish species (e.g., striped killifish, mummichog, bull minnows, etc.).  Only minnows caught with a hook and line will be permitted (i.e., minnows caught in a trap or net may not be scored).  We suggest you provide a picture of the catch with the minnow still on the line.
  5. Can I weigh in the same species of fish into both the Lady Division and the Open Division:  Answer: Yes, but make sure you are registering different catches of that same species (e.g., spot).  You are not permitted to send us a picture of catch for submission to the Lady Division, and then show up at weigh in with that same catch to have it measured and registered in the Open Division.  One fish, unique submission to one division!!!
  6. Can I have a catch previously submitted to a division moved to a different division (e.g., spot catch of 9” moved from Youth Division to Open Division).  Answer:  Yes, particularly if that helps your standings in the tournament.   The weighmaster team will also be on the lookout for entries that may be moved that will help your standings.  Your request for changes must be made prior to 5:00 PM.
    2022 Update: This answer applies to the old rules. If you are in Lady or Youth, by default, your fish is first applied to the Open Species Division. Your fish will be automatically applied to the Grand Prize Division and the applicable Lady or Youth Division.
  7. Can I enter fish I catch out of Capt. Billy’s pond by the dock?  Answer:  Firstly, don’t let Capt. Billy see you catching fish out of his ornamental saltwater pond.  Those fish are kept for his pet Blue Heron.  Secondly, even if you do catch fish in his pond, they will not be permitted.
  8. If I am fishing from a boat with five other anglers, do I weigh in fish by my boat number or individual angler?  Answer:  Both.  Catches are registered by your “Team” (i.e., your boat)  number and individual angler name of that team.  Results will be tabulated based on groupings of catches by individual angler.  If you want your catches to be aggregated for your entire boat, enter the catches all under the same angler name (e.g., the captain).
  9. Can two different anglers from the same boat win prizes in the Open Division?  Answer:  Yes.   Since catches are scored by individual anglers, results will be tabulated for each angler.  Though your team will improve its results in the Open Species Divisions, you will not see fish lengths aggregated by your boat for the $500 Grand Prize.  The Grand Prize is tabulated based on catches to individual anglers.
  10. Can I win multiple cash prizes in a species subdivision?  Answer:  No.  Only your top species subdivision fish is used in the calculations even if you submit multiple catches of the same species. (e.g., you can’t win 1st and 2nd in the Open Division Spot Subdivision).
  11. Can I win multiple cash prizes in separate species subdivisions?  Answer:  Yes.  You can enter catches in all Open species subdivisions and win prizes in each.