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Top Sports Fishing Tournaments in Morehead City, NC

fishing tournaments in nc


Known as the Crystal Coast, the 85-mile stretch of shoreline in eastern North Carolina is home to some of the world’s best fishing. Inland catches include redfish, black drum, sea trout, and striped bass, while offshore fishing produces marlin, mackerel, mahi, wahoo, tuna, and sailfish. 


It’s the allure of the elusive offshore fish that have led to the formation of some of the country’s largest, most competitive, and most fun sports fishing tournaments. Many are located in the Morehead City area of Carteret County, NC. Here are a few of our favorites!


Fishing Tournaments in Morehead City


fishing tournaments in morehead city nc marlin


Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament

Friday, June 11th – Sunday, June 20th, 2021

Morehead City, NC


One of the largest and oldest fishing tournaments in the country, the annual Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament attracts hundreds of teams each year that compete to catch the biggest blue marlin and win hundreds of thousands of dollars in prizes. The largest fish ever caught weighed a whopping 912 pounds back in 2019. The tournament also focuses on conservation, requiring anglers to release any fish weighing less than 400 pounds. It is quite a distinction to win this competition.


Keli Wagner Lady Angler (KWLA) Tournament

Friday, June 11th – Saturday, June12th, 2021

Morehead City, NC


Four women in the history of the above Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament have won the grand prize in the event’s 62-year history. To introduce more “lady anglers” to the sport, the Keli Wagner Lady Angler (KWLA) Tournament was founded in 1997. In 2019, the tournament, which always takes place on the first day of Big Rock, attracted 167 boats and prize winnings of more than $177,000.


Carteret Community College Spanish Mackerel & Dolphin Fishing Tournament

Friday, July 9th – Sunday, July 11th, 2021

Morehead City


The Carteret Community College Spanish Mackerel & Dolphin Fishing Tournament is a fun family event open to anglers of all ages and abilities. Participants can test their skills while celebrating the summer fishing season off the North Carolina coast. There is a variety of categories and prizes, and events and entertainment all weekend long.


Swansboro Five-0 King Mackerel Tournament

Tuesday, October 19th – Saturday, October 23rd, 2021



The smaller, fall Swansboro Five-0 King Mackerel Tournament attracts about 50 boats and is a great way to earn cash and prizes while enjoying the sport. There are full days of fishing and plenty of weigh-in activities that include an awards party and free concert. Anglers come from the Crystal Coast and all across the country to participate in this exciting event.

If you’re a fan of offshore fishing, or even the inland sport for that matter, you’re never too far from the action with a custom home built on your lot in Carteret County, NC. JC Jackson Homes offers spacious, award-winning floor plans that come with a higher level of finish, flexible options, thoughtful design, and features that are upgrades with other builders. To learn more about the best in coastal North Carolina living, contact us at (252) 648-6864 or schedule an appointment today.


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