This event may be recorded for possible video production and distribution.
These rules have been established to encourage fairness, safety, conservation, and significant care for the fish caught. It is the goal of this event to move our sport forward as an example for all to follow.
Entries made and paid for are prohibited from being sold, bartered, or given away without the expressed written consent of a tournament official.
All Entries Are Final! Any entry that will not be used will be offered at face value to a waiting list of teams/anglers. No “scalping” will be allowed. If it is discovered that any time a team has/had attempted to scalp or sell their entry for profit, they will automatically be disqualified and refunded their entry fee, less a $200 administrative processing charge only IF a replacement team can be secured. THIS EVENT IS CAPPED AT 50, 3 PERSON TEAMS plus up to 10 promotional entries.
1. This is an optional 2 day elimination event. Only the top 4 finishing teams will have the option to compete on day 2. At the conclusion of day 1, the top 4 finishing teams will be given 2 options. Option 1: The 4 top finishing teams must unanimously agree to split the top 4 place prize money equally and thereby conclude the event after day 1, or, Option 2: All or some of top 4 finishing teams agree to fish and compete on day 2 for 1st, 2nd, 3rd and/or 4th place positions and cash prize awards. If option 2 is elected, teams start day 2 with zero weight and must follow the tournament rules as published.
2. Good sportsmanship is expected of all individuals before, during and after the tournament event. This includes social media bashing of the event and/or event participants. Failure to follow good sportsmanship may result in disqualification and/or revocation from fishing this and/or any further Mississippi River Monsters and/or Mega Bucs Tournament events.
3. Any disorderly conduct will be reason alone for disqualification.
4. Any violation will result in an automatic disqualification.
5. All State and Federal rules must be observed. It is up the anglers to determine what license or licenses may be needed.
6. Teams are limited to a maximum of 3 persons.
7. All children 16 and under MUST be accompanied by an adult.
8. Life vests are encouraged to be worn at take-off and while underway at all times.
9. Fish may only be caught by Rod and Reel method only.
10. Registration will take place on Friday afternoon between 4:00 PM and 7:00 PM. Registration will take place at TBA.
11. Tournament Hours: 7:30 AM - 4:30 PM. Boat launching will begin at 5:00 AM at the Helena boat ramp. Boats may leave the harbor at 6:00 AM. Lines in the water prior to 7:30 AM will be cause for immediate disqualification.
12. Teams will NOT be allowed to trailer. All boats must launch and be recovered from the Helena boat ramp and be at back to the Helena boat ramp no later than 5:30 PM.
13. Weigh-in will begin and take place at the Cherry Street Pavilion at or before 6:00 PM.
14. A maximum of 3 fish of any size per boat will be allowed at the weigh-in. Only 3 fish alive in the live-well will be allowed at weigh-in.
15. Teams are allowed to have as many rods on board as needed. However, only 6 rods are allowed in the water at any given time.
16. No snagging will be allowed
17. No fouled hooked fish will be accepted (a fouled hook is any hook located behind the gill plate).
18. No chumming.
19. No fishing intentionally baited holes.
20. All tournament boats must maintain a distance of 50 yards between each other while anchored and 50 feet while drifting or spot locked. This includes all boats.
21. Buddy fishing or sharing of information during tournament hours including techniques, baits, location, etc. is strictly prohibited.
22. No fishing outside of the boat.
23. No alcoholic beverages, marijuana, or illegal substances are allowed onboard or used during tournament hours.
24. Due to possible inclement weather, all boat captains must decide for themselves and their fellow team members if it is safe to launch and proceed. The Mississippi River Monsters Mega Bucs Tournament will proceed with the event unless the director(s) along with 5 randomly selected team captains determine the conditions to be unsafe prior to the event.
25. Onboard live wells must be no less than 50 gallons and employ an electric freshwater circulating pump and includes proper aeration. OXYGEN USE IS ENCOURAGED.
26. If there are more than 3 fish in live-well at weigh-in it will result in disqualification.
27. It is mandatory that ALL fish handled at weigh-in are encouraged to be handled with a gripper and/or gloves. Weigh slings are encouraged. Larger fish are encouraged to be handled by 2 anglers.
28. Dropping of fish at weigh-in is discouraged.
29. Placing of ALL fish into the weigh totes must be completed with care. No throwing or mishandling will be tolerated.
30. Dead fish will not be allowed on the weigh-in stage and will disqualify your team if presented on stage or weigh-in.
31. No culling of fish once competing boat has been removed from the water.
32. Ties will be decided by a coin toss.
33. Any protests must be made before the Awards Ceremony and must be in writing. We will not accept any protests thereafter.
34. This is a catch and release tournament. All fish must be alive and healthy at the time of weigh-in. It is the objective of the event to release all fish alive and healthy. However, if a fish dies after weigh-in and prior to its release, arrangements have already been made to donate said fish to a local food bank. Fish alive or not, may not be taken home with tournament participants.
35. Angler's that consider their catch to be a possible record will have the sole responsibility for caring for the fish until the proper authorities are notified and arrive for verification purposes. Once verified, the fish must be released alive and healthy.
36. Social Media live feeds are allowed and encouraged. However, caution must be used not to reveal too much relevant information when going live during the tournament hours. (see rule #21)
37. After the published cut-off date, any team that experiences a mishap or mechanical issue before or during the tournament event will still be consided a valid tournament participant and will not be provided any relief or forgiveness of the rules as published.
Upon your entry into the tournament, you agree to and are placed under the Waiver/Release for the Mississippi River Monsters Mega Bucs Tournament.
Please read below:
WAIVER/RELEASE FOR Mississippi River Monsters Mega Bucs Tournament:
By entering the Mississippi River Monsters Mega Bucs Tournament, you attest to have read the accompanying event information and understand the policies and rules of this event. I know that fishing on a river or lake is a potentially hazardous activity. I should not enter unless I am medically able and properly trained. I assume all risks associated with my voluntary participation in this event, including but not limited to, falls and potential drowning, the effects of the weather, including extreme temperatures, boat traffic, and all conditions on the waterways, all such risks being known and appreciated by me. Knowing these facts, and in consideration of your accepting my entry, I for myself, my heirs, executors, administrators, or anyone else who might claim on my behalf, covenant not to sue and WAIVE, RELEASE AND DISCHARGE Mississippi River Monsters Mega Bucs Tournament, the City of Helena and all sponsors, officials, workers or volunteers, their representatives, successors or assigns for ANY AND ALL claims or liability, whether foreseen or unforeseen, for death, personal injury or property damage and/or loss arising out of, or in the course of my participation in this event. I further grant full permission to the above-mentioned sponsors, organizers, and or agents authorized by them, to use any photographs, videotapes, motion pictures, recordings, or other records of the event for any reasonable public or private purpose.
All fishermen are subject to a polygraph exam.
NOTE: There will be someone at the weigh-in site throughout the tournament. If you have a large fish or fish that will not survive until weigh-in, you may bring your fish to be weighed and recorded. We will then release the fish and you can continue to fish. Once the weight has been recorded and the amount of fish you may not cull when you come back in.
If you have fish that you feel will not survive until weigh-in time, bring them in so they can be weighed and released. That is why we have someone at the weigh-in. Make fish care a priority so that the fish(s) can be released with the least amount of stress and a successful survival rate.
Registration Fee/Payment Schedule
If a team elects to utlize the MEGA BUCs registration payment program, payments must be made on/or before the due date. Failure to make said required payment(s) within or by the terms indicated will cause your entry and any payment(s) already made to be immediately forfeited.
Option 1: Single Payment: $2,500 total due (plus a $90 processing fee)
Option 2: Payment Program: $2,500 over 4 payments (plus processing fees)
1st payment of $500 due with initial registration opening December 1, 2022 at 8PM/7PM Central
2nd payment of $500 due no later than February 1, 2023
3rd payment of $500 due no later than May 1, 2023
4th and final payment of $1,000 due no later than September 1, 2023
All team members must be in place by and paid in full no later than September 1, 2023
If a team elects to withdraw from this event, they will have up to the cut-off date of October 7, 2023 to find a suitable team to purchase their entry.
Boat numbers will be issued by time and date of paid registration.
During the event setup period, this document will remain live and is subject to change without notice. Once registration opens, all rules will become final, with the exception of a rule(s) that may affect the safety or fairness of and for the participating anglers.
Last revised: 2/2/2023