Middle of May at Lake Powell – Arizona – USA

The World Freshwater Spearfishing Championship will be held at Lake Powell, Page, Arizona, from May 16 to May 20, 2023. It will be organized by the National Freshwater Spearfishing Association. Athletes from all over the world will come together to compete in one of the largest freshwater lakes in the USA.

The biggest news for our followers and spearfishing community is that Apnepassion will follow the event live directly from Lake Powell.

Freshwater spearfishing is less popular and easy to practice in Europe compared to some other countries in the World. Still, last year’s 1° CMAS European Freshwater Championship in Finland showed interest of athletes from Mediterranean countries, even though in countries like Spain and Greece spearfishing in lakes is forbidden. The World Freshwater Spearfishing Championship isn’t part of the CMAS calendar, but USOA (Underwater Society of America) and CMAS have started to speak about the possibility to insert it in the CMAS calendar.

Shallow fishing

The rules say that two-persons teams can compete in four different divisions – men’s, women’s, mixed, and masters. The cost of registration is 150 USD per diver. The competition is for individual and team categories, so fish must be kept separated and well-marked in the ice bags.  

In Lake Powell diving conditions are three to ten meters of visibility, and most fish can be shot in the first 10 meters of depth. The water temperature is 18 to 23 Celsius degrees, and the bottom is sand, rock, and mud.

After the mandatory competitors meeting on May 16th, teams have an open day for scouting on May 17th.

Day one of the competition will be only in the part of Lake Powell that belongs to Utah State. Athletes can fish only Game fish, which are Catfish (max. 8 pieces), Walleye (max. 8 pieces), and Stripers (Unlimited), while Bass is illegal. Points at the FWC are not determined by the weight of the fish, but by the number. So each Game fish is worth 3 points.

On the second day of competition, athletes can fish in both waters, Utah and Arizona, but Rough fish only, and that is the Carp. The number of pieces is unlimited and for the calculation it will be one point per fish. In the end, a special prize will be given for the biggest fish in the Men and Women group.

All competitors must come prepared to shoot nearly 100 fish each, which could mean about 370 kilograms of fish. Very important is the fact that the Carp is an invasive species. It is expected that during the competition around 2000-3000 pieces will be shot and they will be used as fertilizers for the local farmers.

Around 60 athletes

The event will be with boats, but multiple teams may share the same boat. Fishing in the event area is forbidden 30 days before the event, but athletes can practice outside the event zone. Each diver is allowed only 10 scouting days, within 30 days of the event. A fishing license is needed to spearfish in Lake Powell either from Arizona or Utah. All USA athletes must join USOA for insurance.
The organizers of the Freshwater Spearfishing World Championship are expecting around 60-70 athletes and for the moment we can tell that from Europe, a few athletes from Great Britain will come to compete in Lake Powell. In the next few days as registration will continue more names will come out and Apneapassion will follow. Everybody interested can check the webpage
www.freshwaterworlds.com. If there are any questions she/he can contact Mike Livingston at mjlivingston2@gmail.com.

(Text Valentina Prokic – Photos Evan Frost)