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Texas Trails Bassmasters Tournament Rules  

Revised December 13, 2014


1.         Rules and Protests  These rules for Texas Trails Bassmasters (TTB) tournaments apply to all entrants of tournaments sponsored by this club.  Violation of any of these rules will warrant appropriate disciplinary action by the Tournament Director.  Any protest must be received by the Tournament Director within 15 minutes following the final weigh-in deadline.  Questions and comments concerning any rule may be directed to the Tournament Director.  In all tournament matters the Tournament Director’s decisions are final. 

2.         Federal, state, and local laws and regulations must be obeyed.  The penalty for violating this rule is disqualification from the tournament, including no participation points.

3.         Tournament entry fee for each individual is $25.00.  No refund of tournament entry.

            Big Bass Pot entry fee for each individual is $5.00.  This entry is optional except for participants who arrive after the official start time.  Any late arriving participant MUST enter the Big Bass Pot and pay the fee at weigh-in time, and upon arrival at the tournament lake MUST find another participating member on the lake and advise him or her of the time of the late arrival and that they are entering the tournament.  The member so informed then must verify the information with the Tournament Director at weigh-in time.  No refund of big bass entry fee.

An optional , progressive, 7 lb. Big Bass Pot is also available for club members. A new pot will start once a club member has won the previous pot. Members that so desire may enter at that time however once a member misses two tournamnets in a row they are automatically dropped from the sign-up list and can not particapate until the next signup or after that pot has been won by another club member. The entry for this pot will also be $5.00 per tournament.

4.         Registration will be held at the hosting marina or park on the morning of the tournament, 30 minutes before official start time.  Guest Contestants, as defined in TTB Bylaws Paragraph 7., must fish with the club member who invited them in a single boat. 

5.         Tournament hours and weigh-in site will be announced at the prior club meeting and knowing this information is the responsibility of each entrant.  All boats will take off when released by the Tournament Director from the host marina or park.  If during the coarse of a tournament a contestants boat breaks down and he has to be towed in, that contestant will not be deemed "late" providing that angler has1) stopped fishing and 2) called another angler prior to the cutoff time. Tournament hours will normally be 6:00 A.M. to 3:30 P.M. however times may change for unforeseen reasons by the tournament director with consent of the members.

6.         All Entrants are subject to take a Polygraph Test.  Failure to take and/or pass such test will result in disqualification.  Any person who has failed a polygraph test in connection with any bass tournament for cheating will not be eligible to fish in this or any club event. 

7         Alcohol and Narcotics will not be allowed in the possession of any contestant during tournament hours, unless medication is prescribed by a physician for the contestant’s personal use.

8         Courtesy, Safe Boating, Sportsmanship, and Conservation must be displayed by contestants at all times.  A U.S. Coast Guard approved, chest type PFD, must be worn and fastened anytime the boat is on plane.  All boats must meet U.S. Coast Guard standards.  All boats must have an emergency kill switch and its lanyard must be attached to the driver during operation of the combustion engine except if the boat is operated at idle speeds.

9.        All fishing must be done with artificial lures only.  Pork baits are permitted.  Only one rod and reel at a time may be used by contestants.  Trolling with the combustion engine is not allowed.  All fish must be caught in a legal and sporting manner during tournament hours in tournament waters.  Contestants may not use any communications device for the purpose of locating or catching bass during tournament hours.  Tracking devices inserted into bass may not be used by any contestant during or before the tournament.  Hole-sitting by or for entrants is not allowed.  No double teaming.  Underwater cameras are not permitted.

10        Off Limits Periods  There will be no off limits periods for the tournament lake, for fishing, scouting, or locating bass.  Boat stalls, slips, or beaching of boats is allowed on the night before a tournament for convenience and easing of traffic at the host marina or park.

11.        Fish Retention  Each boat must have an operational live well with an aeration system.  Individuals may keep no more than five fish in the live well.  Culling is allowed.  Upon the landing of a sixth fish a decision must be made as to retain this fish and to release a fish contained in the live well or to release this fish before the next cast.  No dead fish may be culled; a dead fish MUST be retained and weighed as part of the stringer.  No iced or frozen fish will be weighed.  Ice may be added to live well only to aid in survival of fish.  All fish weighed become the property of Texas Trails Bassmasters Club and will be released.  Exceptions:  Trophy or dead fish become the property of the contestant.

12.        Scoring  will be determined by the total weight of no more than five bass.  All fish brought to the weigh-in must meet predetermined length laws.  Fish will be measured on a Check-it-Stik measuring board to achieve maximum length.  In the event of a tie for any position, prize money for that position and the following position will be combined and evenly divided between the tying contestants.  TTB will abide by state rules and regulations as to the length of fish a contestant can keep for a tournament.  (This does not apply to TTB’s open tournaments.)  It is the contestant’s responsibility to identify largemouth bass from Kentucky Spotted bass.  The weight penalty for misidentification will be the same as the penalty described in #14B below.

13A.     Penalties, Dead Fish  For each dead fish weighed in there will be a deduction of one half (.5) pound from the contestant’s total fish weight, no exception.  This deduction also applies to big bass.  A dead fish can not be culled or put back into the lake.

13B.     Penalties, Illegal Fish  The penalty for presenting an illegal fish for weigh-in will be disqualification from the tournament, including no participation points. 

13C.     Penalties, Late Weigh-In.   Contestants who are not at the official weigh-in area (hosting marina or boat ramp) at the appointed weigh-in time shall be penalized at the rate of one pound per minute, to be deducted from their total weight, including any weight to be counted toward big fish, for each minute they are late. Any contestant that is more than 15 minutes late shall be disqualified for that tournament. 

14.        No Fishing is allowed within 50 yards of another tournament boat without mutual consent.   Boats interfering with another boat must yield right of way.  No tube, bank, or wade fishing is allowed.  All fishing must be from a previously inspected boat. 

15.        Trailering  to and from the weigh-in during tournament hours is not allowed, unless permitted by the Tournament Director prior to the tournament for safety or emergency reasons.

16.        Fishing Guides who have guided for bass on the tournament lake at any time during the 60 day period prior to the tournament will not be eligible to compete in that tournament, unless that person has fished in the previous TTB tournament, or has been a member of the club for more than one year.  Anglers may fish with a guide any time prior to any off limits period.  

17.        Occupancy Limit  Texas Trails Bassmasters allows no more than two persons per boat.  

18.        Hold Harmless  Upon entering any tournament sponsored by Texas Trails Bassmasters, contestants thereby agree to release this club, other contestants, club members, sponsors, or any organization affiliated with Texas Trails Bassmasters from liability for any accidents, injuries, losses, or thefts.  Contestants are responsible for knowing, understanding and abiding by these rules.

19.        Personal Conduct  Any contestant who violates any rule may be disqualified.  Any act of a contestant, verbal or physical, that reflects unfavorably upon Texas Trails Bassmasters Club’s effort to promote fishing, conservation, clean waters, courtesy and safety shall be reason for disqualification from this and all future Texas Trails Bassmasters Club tournaments.

20.        Simultaneous Tournament Fishing  A contestant may not fish a separate tournament while fishing in a club-sponsored tournament, nor may he or she fish in a boat with any other person who is fishing a separate tournament while said contestant is fishing in a club-sponsored tournament.