A couple of months ago I caught my first citation fish, a 44-inch Red Drum, while fishing Cape Hatteras with Rob Alderman
. My wife had just gotten her new Tarpon 120 and decided to stay on the beach that day as the seas were a little rough for a novice paddler.
Last weekend she and I went kayak fishing and we caught a few nice Spanish Mackerel. She caught the largest at about 17 inches. Obviously, she was just getting warmed up.
On Saturday we fished Cape Hatteras again with Rob. Due to Cape Point being closed to all humans for nesting birds, we had to paddle about 2 miles from the nearest open beach to reach the Point. We were looking for large bluefish like the 33-incher that Rob caught earlier in the week.
After a brisk paddle against a light wind we reached the Point, but there were no bluefish to be seen. The water was gin clear and the water looked like Key West, not the Graveyard of the Atlantic. After a while Rob spotted a school of Menhaden moving through the shoals and we gave chase.
'The shoals' just happened to be Diamond Shoals, the dangerously turbulent area just off of Cape Hatteras. We passed through the 'calm' area in 4-6 foot seas with waves coming from three directions at once. Cape Point is the convergence of the Labrador Current and the Gulf Stream Current and it has to be seen to be appreciated. Rob has a video posted on YouTube
for those that are interested. It is even more impressive in real life.
We paddled through unscathed and started throwing lures through the bait to see if we could hook up with the bluefish we saw feeding on it. I hooked a 13" Spanish Mackerel and had just boated it when Sandy yelled 'Fish on!". The fish started pulling drag on her reel and she knew she had something big on the other end of the line.
With Rob's assistance she boated this large Spanish Mackerel. The fish weighed in at 6 lbs, 8 ounces and measured 30.5 inches to the fork of the tail. It was large enough to claim a citation certificate.
There were two other people on this guided trip, Chris and 'Hacksaw'. Chris was paddling a Tarpon 120 and 'Hacksaw' had a vintage Ride 135. I wish I had a picture of Hacksaw's Ride 135. It was quite different from the newer models.
They each caught a puppy drum (redfish) after we crossed back through the shoals. Rob was also able to boat a 34" bluefish in the shoals and hooked up another on a topwater bait, but was bitten off before he could get it to the boat.
This is the second citation fish we've boated this year while fishing with Rob. He puts in his time on the water and knows where to find the fish. If you're coming to the Cape Hatteras area and would like a kayak fishing adventure, you should contact him. He uses Wilderness Systems boats exclusively and currently has Ride 135, Tarpon 120 and Tarpon 140 boats.