2023 State Trail Tournament Rules
Notice: All anglers entering a tournament are subjected to the rules and by entering the tournament you are agreeing that you have read the rules, accept the rules and will abide by the rules.
You may continue to register at the bottom of the rules page.
All members of the Corn Belt Crappie Trail are invited to fish the Midwest Crappie Alliance Shootout at the end of the year.
The top 3 in the point race from each state will qualify for the NCL National Championship. (You must have an NCL membership)
NOTE: When there are 2 bodies of waters that you can fish, for example (Coralville & McBride Lake) for the tournament you can trailer to any boat ramp to access these waters. The registration, rules meeting, live well check, and weigh in will be at the boat ramp listed in the tournament details listed on our website or Facebook page.
1. TEAMS: You may enter alone or with a partner of your choice. No more than two (2) persons will be allowed in a participating boat during tournament hours. Team captain will be listed first, your partner will be allowed to miss 2 tournaments and still obtain your points if you fish alone.
2. RULES MEETING: One team member must be present at angler meeting and remain until the angler meeting is dismissed unless approved by Tournament Director for emergency reasons.
3. WEATHER: In the case of extreme weather/water conditions or National emergencies, Corn Belt Crappie Trail shall have the right to postpone or cancel any tournaments.
4. FISHING HOURS: Fishing hours will be posted on our website or Facebook and will be announced at the Rules Meeting.
5. REGISTRATION: You must register on our website by 4 PM the day before the tournament, there will be a $10 late fee applied if you don't.
6. ENTRY FEES/REFUNDS (Iowa Only): Each regular season tournament is $80 per team. The club championship is $200 per team. Corn Belt Crappie Trail will not refund or forward entry fees for lake conditions, fishing conditions or bite. Teams must request forward/refund for personal, family or work emergencies in writing or electronic mail stating the reason for the request.
Arizona Only: Each regular season tournament is $100 per team. The club championship is $200 per team. Corn Belt Crappie Trail will not refund or forward entry fees for lake conditions, fishing conditions or bite. Teams must request forward/refund for personal, family or work emergencies in writing or electronic mail stating the reason for the request.
SW Oklahoma Only: Each regular season tournament is $100 per team. The club championship is $200 per team. Corn Belt Crappie Trail will not refund or forward entry fees for lake conditions, fishing conditions or bite. Teams must request forward/refund for personal, family or work emergencies in writing or electronic mail stating the reason for the request.
7. STATE LAW: Teams must comply with all State and boating regulations throughout the entire year, including the use of P.F.D.’s and kill switches. Fishing, boating regulations, and licenses are the responsibility of team members. State fishing laws and boating regulations supersede tournament rules. Violation of State or Lake laws is grounds for disqualification.
8. MINORS: Any minor (under 18) who participates, must have a legal guardian present to enter the tournament.
9. BIG FISH: Big fish entries are included in the tournament entry. Only one (1) Big Fish entry per team. Only one (1) big fish will be weighed in. Teams will have that fish marked and designated as their big fish at weigh-in.
10. MEMBERSHIP: Corn Belt Crappie Trail membership is required to fish all our events. Failure to have an active/paid membership is grounds for disqualification. Corn Belt Crappie Trail reserves the right to refuse and/or revoke memberships without cause, reason and/or explanation and without recourse at our own discretion. Membership does not guarantee the ability to enter a tournament. Corn Belt Crappie Trail may deny tournament entry to a member without cause, reason, explanation or recourse. (Memberships are $20 per year per angler)
11. TOURNAMENT DIRECTOR: The Director can fish the tournaments, but another team must weigh in their fish.
12. FISHABLE WATERS: Fishing within 50 feet of a Marina gas pump or within 50 feet of a competitor’s boat is prohibited. Any area of water that can be reached by boat from a non-river boat ramp. You may fish the rivers if you can reach them from the main lake.
13. ALCOHOL: Alcohol beverages are not allowed during the tournament hours. Use of alcohol or non-prescribed drugs during tournament hours is prohibited and will result in disqualification.
14. COMPENSATION: No one can be hired, compensated, or offered compensation in any way to fish with you, mark fishing spots for you, or help you gain a competitive advantage in anyway 30 days prior to any tournament.
15. BOATS: You must fish from a boat. Rubber Rafts or Canoes are not allowed. All tournament boats are required to have a minimum 6 HP or greater motor. If one team member needs to exit the boat, the other team member may continue fishing as long as the exiting team member does not return to the boat that day. If a team member begins the day fishing solo, they must finish out the day fishing solo.
16. POLES: Each angler has to follow the state rules.
17. BAITS: A maximum of two baits per pole may be used during tournament hours if in accordance with Local and State laws. Live and artificial bait may be used unless announced differently on the Tournament Information Page or at the Rules Meeting.
18. OFF LIMITS: Tournament waters are off limits at 8 pm the prior to the start of the competition.
19. CELL PHONES: Cell phones are prohibited during tournament hours unless used for an emergency. You may also use your cell phone if you spot someone cheating to either take a photo of them and or contact a tournament director.
20. SPOTTING: During tournament hours no one may spot fish for you or mark fishing spots for you.
21. LANDING FISH: Crappie must be hooked and landed with a rod or pole by team member(s). Crappie must be hooked through the lip or in the mouth. Landing nets may be used.
22. HOLE- SITTING: No hole sitting by a competitor or non-competitor boat during the tournament will be allowed. This means that a non-competitors hold fishing spots or relay information to competitors.
23. LIFE JACKETS: Life jackets or personal flotation devices must always be worn while your combustion engine is operating. Life jackets must be properly secured and maintained secured until the combustion engine is turned off. Kill switches must always be properly attached the combustion engine is on. All State and Local rules and regulations supersede tournament rules.
24. LIVE WELL CHECKS: Live Well checks will take place on each tournament morning at the designated time and place listed on our website and social media sites.
25. FISH: Teams may weigh in seven (7), live crappie on tournament day. Teams seven (7) crappie must be alive when entering the official weigh-in line. Teams presenting more than seven crappies will be disqualified. Once you have entered the weigh-in line, your fish will be counted and be verified dead or alive by the tournament official. Dead fish will be removed, and you may then continue to the scales for your official weigh-in. Once your fish have been verified alive, you will then be allowed to weigh those fish, even if one or more die before reaching the scales. The tournament official has sole responsibility for the declaration of dead or alive crappie. No mutilated fish may be weighed. Mutilation is defined as any damage that impairs the fish’s fighting ability. All decisions regarding mutilation will be made by Corn Belt Crappie Trail tournament officials. Corn Belt Crappie Trail has the right to keep weighed in fish for further evaluation at our own discretion without explanation or cause.
Weigh-in will not start until everyone that is competing is in line.
26. LENGTH: All crappie brought to the scales for weigh-in must meet State length requirements for the State and may not have any weight enhancements. Any team bringing in illegal crappie to the weigh-in line will be disqualified. A 8” length limit will be enforced on lakes without a length limit.
27. TIES: In the case of a tie, the tie breaker will be determined by the team’s biggest fish, if the big fish is also a tie the winner will be decided in a coin flip. Best 2 out of 3 flips
ARIZONA ONLY: You are allowed to have a 3rd person on your boat to film only. This person can't help you with anything for example baiting a hook or getting the net for you.
SPORTSMANSHIP: Team members/Corn Belt Crappie Trail members are required to follow high standards of sportsmanship, honesty, courtesy, safety, conservation and to conduct themselves in a manner that will be a credit to themselves, Corn Belt Crappie Trail, Corn Belt Crappie Trail sponsors, the sport of fishing, and Corn Belt Crappie Trail efforts to promote the sport. Examples of conduct not complying with those standards include, but are not limited to, the following: Violation of or failure to comply with any of the official rules
CONDUCT: In case of any conduct not complying with the standards, Corn Belt Crappie Trail shall have the right to refuse any entry application, deny a paid entry application, or revoke a membership by returning the entry fee/membership fee of a previously accepted application, or to disqualify a team. Unsportsmanlike conduct can be grounds for disqualification if circumstances require and will be at the discretion of the Tournament Director. Unsportsmanlike conduct could result in membership revocation.
POINTS RACE: Tournament points layout. 1st place will receive 100, 2nd will receive 99, 3rd will receive 98 and so on down the line. Big fish will be worth an additional point. If you don't weigh in any fish you only receive 25 points. Your best 4 finishes plus the Club Championship will be used to determine the Angler Team of the Year. In the event of a tie the winner will be decided by a big fish tie breaker. If the big fish is a tie the winner will be determined by a coin flip. (best 2 out of 3). If you enter with a different partner that would be considered a different team, your partner will be allowed to miss 2 tournaments and still obtain your points if you fish alone.
TOURNAMENT PAYOUT (Iowa Only): The top 3 teams will receive plaques. 10% of entrees will be held back for tournament cost and 10% of the total pot will go to the big fish winner. Payout formula is 1 in 4. For example if we have 15 teams 1st Place $480, 2nd Place $240, 3rd Place $163, & 4th Place $77. To see the complete list of payouts click here.
Arizona Only: The top 3 teams will receive plaques. 30% of entrees will be held back for tournament & insurance cost. 10% of the total pot will go to the big fish winner. Payout formula is 1 in 4. To see the complete list of payouts, click here.
SW Oklahoma Only: The top 3 teams will receive plaques. 10% of entrees will be held back for tournament cost. 10% of the total pot will go to the big fish winner. Payout formula is 1 in 4. To see the complete list of payouts, click here.
QUALIFYING: Teams can qualify by winning a regular season tournament, have fished a minimum of 3 regular season events, or accumulated 300 club points.
TEAM CHANGE: If a qualified team member has sickness, loss of death or other reasonable personal tragedy, they may fish the Championship with another Championship qualified Corn Belt Crappie Trail member. This must be approved by the Tournament Director.