Anglers from other states hoping to come to Texas and outfish the locals got a rude welcome last weekend in Rockport.
Clint Barghi, of Friendswood, caught a redfish and speckled sea trout that measured a combined 47.50 inches in length to win the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour presented by Hobie Fishing event at Rockport on June 10.
The event, which operated out of Cove Harbor Marina, was the last regular-season event for the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour's Texas Division.
Barghi, winner of the 2011 IFA Redfish Tour event at Corpus Christi, traveled five miles in his kayak, fishing top-water baits and popping corks in the Rockport area.
"It was windy again, but the area we fished needs strong wind to catch fish," Barghi said. "All I can say is thanks for the time and effort spent to make this event happen. This ranks as the number one series on the Texas coast."
Second-place finisher, Noel Guerrero, of Portland, Texas, measured a 28-inch redfish and a 17-inch trout to take the $1,000 prize. In his third year fishing the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour, Guerrero fished the shorelines in the South Bay area with top-water baits.
"The fish were in the same place that I pre-fished," Guerrero said. "I caught a lot of fish, which made for a good day."
In the redfish division, Pistol Ahrens, of New Braunfels and Alan Thompson, of Adkins, weighed in a two-redfish limit that totaled 15.65 pounds to win the IFA Redfish Tour event at Rockport on June 9.
To win the event, which also operated out of Cove Harbor Marina, the duo topped a large field of two-angler teams to take home a boat and trailer valued at $30,000.
In their second year fishing the IFA Redfish Tour, the anglers ran 55 miles to fish the waters south of Corpus Christi. The team sight-fished with scented plastics and reported good weather.
Second-place finishers, Chris Logan, of Cat Spring, and Emil Reznicek brought 15.15 pounds to the scales. With three previous IFA Redfish Tour wins under their belts, the anglers ran 60 miles and fished calm waters. The team added to their winnings by bringing in a 9.49-pound kicker redfish and won the $500 Berkley Gulp! Big Fish Award with a $250 Cabela's gift card, courtesy of Berkley.
Fred Lynch, of Corpus Christi, and Jeff Clarkson, of Austin, weighed 14.77 pounds of redfish to take home the third-place prize. The anglers caught their limit near Baffin Bay by sight-casting with scented plastics.
"We were happy to do this well. The fish ate early, but refused to eat after 11.00," Lynch said. "We could have done better, but we had lots of fun fishing together."