Big fish are not always found in big water and last month an angler out for a relaxing afternoon on a North Carolina pier got a Doubletough dose of big game fishing. Malcolm Condie was looking for king mackeral which are not uncommon catches from a pier. Rigging a mullet earlier in the morning, the strike came about 12:30 pm, “It didn’t take off like a king,” reported North Carolina Sportsman. ”It headed east instead of offshore and wasn’t running quite fast enough. At about 300 yards it jumped, but it wasn’t a classic tarpon tailwalking. We were thinking it was probably a big blacktip shark.”
It wasn’t until 45 minutes after hooking up could Condie and other anglers identify it as a tarpon. The angler made his way down the pier and to the beach. He was able to get a gaf in and with some help, hauled it out of the surf and up onto the beach.
The tarpon was weighed at the official weigh station at East Coast Sports in Surf City, topping the scales at 193 pounds, a full 18 pounds heavier than the current state record caught in 2005. The fish was 89 inches long and had a 42 inch girth.