Warren Hinrichs Wins 2007 March Merkin Permit Tournament

Seems Warren Hinrichs and guide Kris Suplee have the magic touch when it comes to feeding permit this year. They followed up their July win of the Del Brown Permit Tournament (see “2006 Del Brown Permit Tournament Results“) by catching six fish and taking top honors at this year’s March Merkin in Key West. They caught one fish on day one, three on the second day, and two yesterday. Second place went to angler Mark Hoskin and guide Bob Paulson with three fish, and third place went to David Dalu fishing with guide Scott Collins, who caught two fish. Dalu and Collins also won the award for the largest fish: 30.5 inches, 22 pounds.
Hinrichs and Suplee caught the first fish they saw on day one, and hooked their last fish — a fish so shallow that his back was 1/3 out of the water — five minutes before the tournament ended at 5PM on day three. “Kris did a great job of finding fish,” Hinrichs said, “taking some chances and finding fish in spots that he hadn’t fished in three years. It made all the difference.”
As organizer Jonathan Ain noted, despite high winds, limited visibility, and fish that weren’t terribly hungry, the 19 fish caught during the event show that it’s a great time of year to fly fish for permit. “It confirms that if you can handle the wind and changeable conditions, March is the month for big permit on the flats.” Ain also noted that during this year’s tournament, the event’s first female angler, Loren Rea, caught the third largest permit (20 lbs.).
The March Merkin benefits the Don Hawley Foundation, which disperses gifts to Keys flats guides in times of need.

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