CHAC Invitational Tournament Rules

The Tournament Co-Directors, Roving Judges and Chief Judge of the Cape Hatteras Anglers Club shall constitute a Board of Judges. The Board of Judges as present for a regular or called meeting shall render all decisions in reference to the Tournament. Their rulings shall be final.

A team shall consist of not more than 6 persons, all of whom must be registered members of the team for which he/she is fishing. All team members may fish at one time; however, at no time shall any member have more than one line in the water. When a team is fishing, no non-team person may assist in any manner.

The team members who are registered at the time of team registration are the ONLY team members allowed to fish during team competition. NO PICK-UP ANGLERS are permitted at registration time or during any fishing session. NO SUBSTITUTION of team members without the written permission of the Board of Judges shall be made.

One member of the team shall act as Team Captain and be responsible for correct scoring of the fish.

For the purpose of scoring largest fish, each angler is responsible for keeping his/her fish separate from those caught by other team members. A fish shall be disqualified for "largest" of species, if there is doubt as to which angler caught the fish.

Fish shall be measured and released alive, unless the angler wishes to keep the fish for eating. Fish kept by anglers shall have both pectoral fins cut off to show that it has already been scored. No scorable fish allowed in coolers. Judges may inspect coolers at any time.

Cast nets are NOT to be used during any fishing session, Chumming or chum pots are NOT to be used during any fishing session.

Rods and reels – unrestricted. Lines – unrestricted. Sinkers – unrestricted. No more than two hooks are allowed on one line at any time with the exception of artificial lures manufactured with more hooks and Hatteras Doodle Bugs. Grappling hooks are not allowed.  Any fish cuagh on "weighted snag or snatch rigs" (three prong grapplig type hooks) will not be scored.

All tournament fish must be caught on hook or lure and landed during specified tournament fishing sessions without assistance from other team members.

No lines are permitted to be in the water prior to starting signal. All lines must be reeled in at the end of a session, and in a timely manner. Any fish hooked prior to end of the session will be scored when beached.

Team Captains and members are responsible to keep their fishing lines from drifting into another team’s station. Any fish hooked outside the boundaries of the team’s designated position will not be scored. No persons, including judges, are permitted to authorize a change in fishing stations.

Any fish beached, which became hooked on loose line, will not be scored.

Fish shall be measured along a straight line the distance from the tip of the snout with the mouth closed to the tip of the compressed caudal (tail) fin, or to the fork of the tail as specified in length measurements for Cobia and Mackerel (Spanish or King). Only fish meeting the state minimum length requirements will be scored.  Any fish caught which measure less than the State Minimum Length required, shall be put back into the ocean (alive, if possible).  Due to promoting "live fish releases" all measurements made on the beach will stand. The largest fish shall be determined by length.

No team or member of any team shall in any way hinder, harass, restrict or otherwise impede other fishermen on the beach, including non-tournament persons fishing in a designated station.

Winning teams shall be determined by the total number of points scored by each team. In case of a tie in points, the team with the larger fish, thus fewer fish shall be the winner. If a tie still exists, winner shall be determined by the flip of a coin by the Chief Judge.

Any team NOT registered by 4:30 P.M. on Registration day shall forfeit their place in the tournament and their place for this year’s tournament shall be given to the next team on the tournament waiting list with team members present. This substitution is for only one year.

Any violation of the above rules shall cause disqualification and forfeiture of their place in the tournament upon review by the Board of Judges.


If a team or team member believes someone from another team has violated any of the tournament rules or the scoring method, that team member or team has the right to make a formal complaint against the team in violation.

The team member, with the captain of his team should contact the judge serving his team’s station and state that they are protesting a violation. The team member(s) who witnessed the violation must be specific in stating the violation, which has occurred.

If the violation is not resolved on the beach, the team member(s) and the team captain must submit their protest in writing and address the Board of Judges of the Cape Hatteras Anglers Club before the Board of Judges can or will take action.

If the protest involves the number of a measurement of their fish in a session the captain should not sign the session score sheet, but write "under protest" on the signature line.



North Carolina Marine Fisheries has enacted regulations to protect many of the fish we catch in our waters. Please consult the Marine Fisheries chart handout or click here for length and creel limits.

Fish should be released by a judge, if possible, but a fish may be released by an angler if observed by a judge.

The Cape Hatteras Anglers Club encourages all to release as many fish as possible. We will make every effort to have enough judges available in the event of a blitz. THE JUDGE MUST TAKE THE MEASUREMENT AND MUST SEE THE FISH RELEASED. As a reminder, no one may score or possess any fish that does not fully meet NCMF minimum length regulations.

The following scoring schedule and rules governing this tournament are intended to allow all to compete fairly and to give all a chance to win on equal footing. We trust they will be accepted in good faith by all registered anglers.

Any team found to be in violation of any of these rules will be disqualified from the tournament


Fish must measure minimum length to qualify.
Spanish Mackerel, King Mackerel, Greater Amberjack, and Cobia must meet state minimum length requirement first and secon be measured to fork tail length.
First 11 inches = 1 point
Each additional FULL inch = 1 additional point for each inch up to 20 inches
Each FULL inch over 20 inches = 3 additional points for each inch
Example: 20 inch fish = 10 points. 21 inch fish = 13 points.
For largest fish competition, fish should be measured in 1/4 inch increments.
Please refer to hand-out for NC State regulations on keeping fish.


Minimum length 11 inches – 1 point
Albacore – Blow Toad (Puffer) – Black Drum – Croaker – Lingcod – Little Tunny (False Albacore) Pompano – Sea Mullet – Spot – Bluefish

Minimum length 12 inches – 2 points
Spanish Mackerel (FL) –  Gray Trout

Minimum length 14 inches – 4 points
Spotted Seatrout (Speckled)

Minimum length 15 inces – 5 points 

Minimum length 18 inches – 8 points
Red Drum (D)

Minimum length 24 inches – 14 points
King Mackerel (FL)

Minimum length 28 inches – 34 points
Striped Bass – Greater Amberjack (FL)

Minimum length 33 inches
Cobia (FL)

*Minimum lengths are N.C. legal lengths as of printing date
and could change as of tournament date.  Click
here for current legal lengths.


FL – Fork Length
(D) – 1 per day, no possession of fish over 27"