Louisiana Redfish Kayaking Tournament Draws Record Number of Anglers

Last Saturday, 488 kayaking anglers participated in Ride the Bull IV, a catch-and-release redfish tournament in Grand Isle, La., reportedly making it the most popular kayak tournament in North America.

An article from The Times Picayune says the turnout was nearly twice what it was last year, surprising tournament organizer Danny Wray. The crowd even included one angler who traveled 3,983 miles from Hawaii to participate.

"When we started this, I would have thought 200 (anglers) was a stretch," Wray said.

Sour weather kept about half the registered anglers at the marina after the 7 a.m. official start until better conditions prevailed. The remaining paddlers ventured out once the front passed. In the end, only 35 bull reds were caught, submitted, weighed, tagged, and released.

First place went to Jeff Gleason of Folsom, La., who caught a 32.96 pound redfish on cut mullet. He won a new Hobie Pro Angler kayak and $2,200.