Last year, during Billfish Tournament weekend, I had guests visiting from Europe and I was eager to show them our beautiful barrier islands. We set out for Horn Island on a nice Sunday afternoon looking forward to a great day on the island.
Just as we were approaching Horn Island, we were cut off by a very large fishing vessel heading out to fish. It was obvious to us that this boater was a part of the tournament. He was full throttle heading across the northern beach area where many people were anchored for the day. Not only did he rock every boat anchored with his huge wake, but he caused a very severe impact on my boat as there was no time to react. As a result, one of my guests suffered two broken vertebrae.
My purpose in sharing this story is to ask the Billfish Tournament officials to spend some time discussing/reminding their participants about courtesy to other boats in and around the barrier islands as they are heading out. Boaters are always responsible for the damages that their wake may produce.
It is my hope that this year's tournament is a successful one as well as a safe one.