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Bisbee's Black & Blue Marline Tournament - The Richest Fishing Tourney in the World

Shotgun Start of the Bisbee Black and Blue Marlin TournamentBisbee’s Black & Blue Marlin Tournament, claiming to be the world’s richest Billfish Tournament in the world, is underway this weekend in Cabo San Lucas. The famous 'shotgun' start shown right had sport fishermen from around the globe dashing from the Cabo harbor to pursue their dreams of a big fish and a multi-million dollar payday.

This years Bisbee Black and Blue Marlin Tournament will be held October 22nd to 26th, 2013 and is the culmination of the Bisbee fishing tournament season in Baja California Sur.

The Bisbee dates back to 1981, when Cabo San Lucas was pretty much just a dusty fishing destination with a few strip bars, six teams entered and the tournament offered prizes totaling $10,000. Today the tournament is billed as the richest fishing tournament, Cabo San Lucas has become a major travel destination and there are dozens of nudie bars. There was more than 150 entries this year and more than $4 million dollars total up for grabs.

There are now three Bisbee tournaments, the famous and extravagant Bisbee Black & Blue marlin tourney which is labeled 'the big show'. Competition is fierce and everyone has their game face. The preceding event, the Los Cabos Open is like the warm up band for the Black and Blue with social events and less serious/more fun. The early season East Cape Offshore is likened to the days of old, with entries from panga sized to super sport fishers, labeled as fishing tournaments the way Baja used to be.

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It is interesting how the wheel turns, the less significant event being on East Cape and the grand-daddy in Los Cabos. The entire Baja sport fishing industry evolved from early interest by celebs like John Wayne and Bing Crosby and their fishing expeditions to East Cape.


East Cape Offshore Tournament

The 2013 East Cape Offshore Tournament was held July 23th through July 27th with three days of fishing. The tournament was moderately successful this year despite the low turnout and catch.

Bisbee Black & Blue Marlin TournamentThe waters were a little cooler this year off the East Cape and this years catches were a bit light. East Cape normally provides some of the richest fishing grounds to be found in Baja California Sur including the famous Gordo Bank. This early season tournament has always been a popular warm up for the big money events later in October.

Los Cabos Offshore Tournament

The second event of the Bisbee season came right in front of the famous Black and Blue Marlin Tournament. Beginning on October 18 through October 20, 2013 the event had a good turnout and a moderate catch

The Los Cabos Offshore Tournament featured two days of fishing as competitors tuned up for the Black and Blue. Cabo and even the Puerto Los Cabos marina filled with would be competitors.

2013 Black & Blue Schedule of Events

2:00pm -6:00pm Registration and distribution of team bags
6:00pm-7:00pm Captains Meeting, upper deck of the Puerto Paraiso Mall. One team member must attend.
7:00pm-9:00pm Opening Ceremonies begin: Flag Honors with Mexican Naval Escort, Mexican National Anthem, Pre-Colombian New Fire Dance, Lighting of the Tournament Torch, Japanese Taiko Drums, Music by Cabomax.

8:00am Shotgun Start.
8:00am-5:00pm Tournament Fishing; lines must be out of the water by 5:00pm.
8:00am-9:00pm Weigh Station is open in front of the Puerto Paraiso Mall, boats inside the harbor entrance by 9:00pm can weigh.

7:00pm-8:30pm Awards Celebration starts off with cocktails followed by dinner and a big screen presentation of the tournament video. The awards presentation starts after viewing the tournament video followed by music by Cabomax. Open to tournament participants only.

The Bisbee Black & Blue Marlin Tournament

"The Big Show" The Bisbee Black & Blue Marlin Tournament is underway at the time of this article, October 22 to 26th, 2013. More than 150 boats are out there right now trying to reel in more than $4 million dollars worth of total prize money. Live video feeds and live scoring can be found on the Bisbee website.

Cabo is jammed with both the competitors and spectators for this once a year event. Click here for the Cabo Fishing Report

The Bisbee is certainly one of the most popular fishing tournaments in the world and certainly the biggest in all of Baja. But the game has had its problems, many of which far from the direct control of the event staff. In years past it seemed every tourist business in Los Cabos peeled back the price tags to get their mordida (bite) of the prize money.

Everyone assumes that the prices of those Cuba cigars (made in Honduras) and hookers (who come from all over Latin American for the event) will soar during the Bisbee. But a few years back the docking charge at the Cabo Marina fuel dock could amount to nearly a third of the entire fuel bill. One yacht owner was overhear to say he wanted to withdraw from the event, slap his yachts back on Dockwise and ship them back to Seattle. Hopefully, businesses will learn they don't want to kill the goose with the golden eggs, which brings the first fall influx of tourist money to Los Cabos.

As boats and fishermen from all over the world descend on Cabo San Lucas for this event which is billed as the World's Richest Fishing Tournament. Slip fees, fuel dock fees and pretty much every price in Los Cabos soars during this event so hold on to your wallets.

We at wish all you anglers the best and thank the whole Bisbee family for continuing on with their growing support of the local economy of Baja California.End



Images from the weigh-in on Thursday, Oct 24, 2013.

The fish on the scales came in at just under 500lbs. The fish on the dolly, waiting to be weighed was someone larger and was likely to be the catch of the day. If in fact it was the catch of the day it would be the daily winner of about $1.2 million dollars in prize money.

No qualifying fish were caught on the first day of the event.


Additional Information

Bisbee Black & Blue Marlin Tournament
Baja California Sur Weather