Becoming the Best Key West Florida (FL) Fishing Guide
What began more than 40 years ago has evolved into one of the most respected and dominating force in sport fishing history. It is the reputation of a name that has been unmatched for decades. The legend started with one person, Ralph Delph.
In 1963 Ralph began fishing competitively in the Miami Sportfishing Club where he won numerous titles and division championships competing against such notables as Flip Pallot, Nat Ragland, and John Emery. It was during this time that he began to compete in the Metropolitan South Florida Fishing Tournament.
The MET is the oldest and largest fishing tournament in the world, with an annual participation of 30,000 to 50,000 anglers. In 1967 Ralph won the 'Top Angler of the Year' award and was designated the 'Master Angler'. In 1969 he duplicated the feat to becoming the only angler in the MET's 40 year history to win the 'Master Angler' award more than once. It was shortly after this that Captain Delph turned pro and began to compete as a fishing guide. There are more than 200 registered fishing guides in the MET. During this five month long annual tournament he guided anglers for trophies and 2004 Capt. Delph has won the 'Top Guide' trophy for 28 of the past 30 years. In 1996 Key West fishing guides Capt. Rob Delph and Capt. Ralph Delph became the only two guides ever to tie and share this title in the same year. Ralph is also the only guide to have ever won the 'Triple Crown of Guiding', i.e. 'Most Winners', 'Most Citations', and the 'Most Releases' in the same year. These feats have never been duplicated before or since. During this time frame more than 80% of the overall angling championships of the MET, now known as the 'Grand Master', have been won by anglers fishing out of Capt. Delph's fishing charter boat. His anglers have more than 500 tournament wins and have broken countless tournament records.
Flats guides compete in some of the most prestigious fly fishing tournaments each year in Islamorada, Florida. Over the years fishing the Florida Keys, saltwater fishing guide, Ralph Delph has been instrumental in turning these tournaments into 'release' tournaments by fishing only the release divisions. The Gold Cup Tarpon Tournament is an inshore invitational tournament fished by such notable flats fishing guides as Ted Williams, Stu Apte, and Al Pfleuger Jr. Tarpon fishing keys guide, Ralph has competed in the release division where his angler set the record for the most released tarpon in a single day in the backcountry as well as the most released tarpon for any Gold Cup Tarpon Tournament. He has also guided the winner of the Women's World Record Invitational Tarpon Tournament on fly fishing charters on two occasions as well as numerous second and third place wins. Backwater Captain Ralph Delph was the first three time winning guide in the history of the Keys FL Don Hawley Invitational Tournament.
Ocean, Saltwater, Deep Sea, Sport, Backwater Fishing, Guided Fishing Charters
On April 9, 2005, IGFA presented Key West Fishing Guide Ralph Delph with the “Lifetime Achievement Award” at their annual awards banquet. Fishing the Keys, he is the first person in history to have guided anglers to 100 IGFA World Records. Having already surpassed the 250 IGFA World Record mark, he has set his goal to be the first in history to guide anglers to more than 300 world records. Having grown up in a competitive fishing environment, it was an easy transition for the sons to follow in their father's famous footsteps. They in turn began winning tournaments and catching world records. The sons have guided their clients to more than 50 IGFA World Records of their own.
The Hemmingway Classic, also known as the Keys Classic endorsed by Redbone@Large, includes three divisions; Marlin, Sailfish, and Light Tackle. Over the years, saltwater fishing guides Ralph, Rob and Billy Delph have won a combined total of over 13 First Place Championships in the Sailfish and Light Tackle divisions and countless second and third place wins. They took First Place Team over 27 times. No other name claims as many wins in the history of this tournament.
For nearly two decades, during the summer months, the Delph's have been Bluefin Tuna charter fishing the giants in New England. During this time, they have landed more than 200 giants, four of which topped the scales at more than 1000 pounds including the largest fish of any kind, ever taken on stand up tackle, a whopping 1154 pound giant. Other notable accomplishments include the seven largest fish ever taken on a fly rod including a 387 pound record Bull Shark. The former all tackle record for a Hammerhead Shark was 976.5lb caught by another Delph Key fishing charter. The largest fish ever taken on bait casting tackle is a whopping 449 pound Bull Shark that still stands after more than 20 years. While offshore charter fishing, the Delph's held the previous Florida State Record for Yellow fin Tuna with a 230 pound fish that was recently reestablished with a 240 pounder, again out of the Delph's boat while sport fishing.
The Delph family deep sea fishing company has been featured in countless Keys fishing films and videos for television that have aired throughout Europe, Japan, and the United States. Ralph's latest, titled 'Fishing Legends' is scheduled to air this fall on the FOX Network. They are in the public eye constantly through their appearances on radio shows and featured articles in newspapers and magazines.
Most recently, the Delph brothers have decided to pool their talents and fish as one team rather than compete against one another in the Southern Kingfish Association Tournament Trail. In their first season, fishing as a team, they have literally made history, not only breaking records, but dominating tournaments in their home waters from Key West to Sarasota. The Delph team showed a skeptical crowd that they were a force to be reckoned with by shattering the national all time largest kingfish record with a giant 71.89 lb. kingfish and took home the first place prize, a Dodge pickup truck at the Naples Kingfish Classic. Everyone was anxious to see their performance at the next tournament in Fort Myers. Not disappointing their fans, they stole the show with a 50 lb. kingfish and towed the first place prize, a new 21' Contender boat, motor and trailer home. With all eyes on the Delph's at the last tournament in Sarasota, they took 'Top Honors' in Division 11 and earned their spot at Nationals with an all time record breaking three fish aggregate. They also won the Key West leg of Division 10 that same season. Beginning the 2005 Tournament season, they are at it again by bringing a 68 pound king to Marco Island King Fling, not only taking 1st place but now they have 1st and 2nd largest fish in SKA history. They then went on to take second in the Naples Kingfish Classic, won division 11 again and remain undefeated in this division. No other team has ever kept their average fish weight as high as the Delphs have. The Delph Fishing Team proved that they are a serious threat to their competitors anywhere they go whether they're charter fishing Key West or on the tournament trail. The team is looking forward to taking competition to the next level and honoring their family tradition Light Tackle Fishing Key West.
Delph Fishing Charters is a Fishing Charter company. Our main offerings include: Wreck Fishing and Bluewater Fishing charters for your deep sea and shallow water fishing trips.
We serve the following States, Cities, Zip Codes and Counties:
Key West, Keys, Florida, South Florida, Florida Keys, Lower Keys, Dry Tortugas, Dry Tortuga, Dry Tortugas National Park, Fort Jefferson, Marquesas, Marquesa, Islamorada, Keylargo, Marathon, Miami