The true meaning behind the name of the Big Rock Tournament

MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (WNCT) – The Big Rock Tournament is winding down for the week, but when it comes to the name, many don’t know where it comes from.

It’s easy to guess the blue marlin part, but 9 On Your Side dug deeper to find out the meaning behind the Big Rock and just how much you may know about it.

Some of the best fishing off the Crystal Coast can be found about 60 miles out in a place actually known as the Big Rock.

“Some people call it the rock; some people call it the stone,” said Randy Gregory, the Big Rock Weigh Master.

No matter what you call it, the Big Rock actually isn’t a rock at all.

Many folks 9 On Your Side talked to Friday had never heard of this underwater secret. We asked Iris Bundy and Dottie Watson from Elizabeth City if they knew the Big Rock was an actual place.

“No I didn’t,” said Watson.

Others were not sure why it was called the Big Rock. If you ask any fishermen, they’ll give you a different answer.

“The Big Rock is actually a specific place that a lot of boats fish,” said Spencer Jackson.

“It is indeed a place and it’s a fantastic fishing spot,” said Gregory. “Anywhere in the world it could compare to any place you could imagine wanting to go off shore fishing.”

So if it’s not a rock, what is it?

It’s a series of ledges, peaks, and crevasses that cover between eight to 10 miles of the Atlantic.

“It’s where the cold water from the Labrador Current and the warm water of the Gulf Stream meet,” said Gregory.

This makes it a haven for small fish.

“Of course, they attract the larger game fish and the blue marlin. So, that’s why everybody goes fishing at the Big Rock,” Gregory continued to say.

Many agree you’ll find your best luck of hooking a blue in these warm waters. If you want to fish the Big Rock, you can head out there to catch yourself a big blue.

The season typically runs from March till November.

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