Throwdown Tournaments


A NAKA Throwdown is the formal name for our weeknight and short notice tournaments. Events are held at various sites across North Alabama on weekday evenings and periodically on Saturdays. These tournaments are quick (usually 2-4 hour) and inexpensive ($10 entry with signed waiver, optional $5 BigBass pot). All entry fees are paid in cash at the captains meeting preceding the launch. The winner takes all and leaves with the pot.

Throwdown events use the same rules as NAKA Tournament Trail events (mandatory life jackets and waivers, fish scored by nearest 1/4 inch, judges decisions final, etc) with a few exceptions. We highly recommend using a tournament hog trough for scoring as it is the most clear in pictures but we allow other forms of bump/measuring boards in Throwdowns (site director’s discretion). Weeknight Throwdowns will only use 2 fish stringers because of the limited time involved. Weekend and other special Throwdowns may use the customary 3 fish stringers. Specifiers will be shared during the launch/captains meeting and usually consist of a NAKA phrase written on the anglers hand.

We intend for the NAKA Thursday Throwdown series to be ideal events for members to invite anglers new to kayaking or new to fishing in the area. Most events will take place on common knowledge fishing sites and are generally beginner friendly.

We encourage NAKA anglers across North Alabama to organize and host Throwdowns in their immediate areas (with approval from the Throwndown Chairman). We have sites already operating in Gadsden, Huntsville, and Decatur. We encourage and expect more to be organized in the future. If you have interest in hosting a NAKA Throwdown event, Contact David Mayfield (NAKA Vice President and NAKA Throwdown Chairman) at or Nate Mayfield (NAKA President) at


Photos from Throwdowns

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PDF of NAKA Throwdown Tournament rules

These events are open to all anglers provided they meet the requirements and honor all rules and regulations stated.


Participation, Eligibility, and Entry Fees

Sportsmanship, courtesy, safety, and fish conservation are required from every entrant.

Fishing and navigating water are each a risky activity which could result in the loss of life or All participants must sign a liability release before the start of each event.

All participants under the age of 18 must provide a liability release before the start of the event signed by a parent or guardian who is present or has previously met with the Tournament Director.

All participants must have a valid fishing license for that body of water and for the targeted species of fish.

All entrants must follow all federal, state, and local governed rules and boating and fishing regulations.

The Tournament Director reserves the right to refuse any entry for any reason.

The possession or use of alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs is Any possession or use of alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs, participation in criminal activity, or other conduct reflecting unfavorably upon the tournament will be subject to disqualification.

Entry fees must be paid prior to the event.

It is the responsibility of each participant to report and pay taxes on any winnings.



Only man-powered vessels will be allowed (canoes, kayaks, SUP, float tubes, ). Participants using vessels that do not fall within the canoe, kayak, SUP, or float tube categories must get clearance with the Tournament Director before participation.

No electric or gas motors However, accommodations will be made for special needs anglers on a case-by-case basis. Arrangements must be made prior to the tournament.

Only one paid entrant per vessel.



Safe boating shall be observed at all times.

During competition each contestant is required to comply with all local, state, and federal boating and fishing laws.

Events may be canceled due to unsafe weather or water conditions.

Each participant must wear a US Coast Guard-approve chest-type life preserver anytime on the water during the This preserver must be strapped, snapped or zippered securely, and maintained in that condition while the entrant is in the water on the kayak. Inflatable life vest indicators should be checked daily. Violation of this rule may be reason for disqualification.

When kayaking in low visibility situations (e.g. fog, heavy rain, prior to safe light) competitors must operate their kayaks in a safe manner and ensure they can be seen by other boaters.


Eligible Water

All entrants will launch and recover from same location unless otherwise noted.

Launch times will be announced prior to the Entrants may not launch their boat prior to the launch time.

”Mothershipping” or transporting your kayak via another vehicle or boat after the launch time is not allowed unless otherwise allowed by the Tournament

The Tournament Director may declare some waters off-limits prior to the competition.


General Rules

Do not cause undue harm to the fish.

All fish will be immediately released unharmed after photo has been taken.

No fish will be kept in ice chests, baskets, stringers, etc.

Each fish can only be submitted once.


Tackle and Equipment

Only artificial lures and biodegradable artificial lures may be used.

No “live bait” or “prepared bait” may be used with the exception of pork strips or rinds.

Only one rod and reel may be used at a Trolling lures, even if the rod is not being held by the angler, is considered “in use”.

The use of depth finders, temperature gauges, sonar, and sound attractants are allowed.

A landing net may be used to land a fish.

Fish grippers may be used to retain a fish.

All activities will be performed by the individual No help shall be given landing, measuring, photographing, or releasing the fish.


Qualifying Fish

Fish must be caught from the tournament waters during the official tournament No angler may score a fish they did not catch during tournament hours.

Fish must be caught using a rod and reel or fly rod in a sporting manner. Targeting injured, sick, dying, or dead fish is not a sporting manner.

No electronic tracking devices (implanted microchips) may be used to locate fish.

Moving fish or using methods to contain fish (cages, aquariums, stringers, ) prior to a tournament is not permitted.

Black bass (largemouth, smallmouth, spotted) must be 8” in length unless laws state otherwise.

Fish will be caught, measured, photographed, and released.

Fish will be photographed using a smartphone or digital See Photo Criteria.

There will be a 2 fish limit unless otherwise noted.

You may not score the same fish more than once.



Entrants must return to the launch point for a weigh-in at the designated time.
Memory card must be turned no later than 15 minutes after tournament end time.
A penalty of 1-inch will be assessed every 5 minutes after the turn in period.
After 15 minutes, the entrant will be disqualified.
Anglers leaving the tournament prior to the weigh-in time shall notify a tournament official.

Tournaments may utilize an online photo submission Facebook or email may be such a system. Such a system will be announced prior to the tournament. Historically, NAKA has submitted photos to a specific Facebook group thread.



Entrants’ photos will be collected and scored by a designated tournament By default, the tournament committee will be the Tournament Director, Assistant Tournament Directors, and Rules Committee Members.

Photos that do not meet the requirements will be disqualified.

Once prizes have been awarded, the tournament will be declared complete.



A unique identifier will be announced or provided prior to the start of the event.

The identifier must be visible in each photo.

Fish will be measured to the nearest ¼-inch, rounding down.

In the event of a tie, the angler who submitted his/her fish first will be declared the winner.

In the event that fish are submitted at the same time, one coin toss will be used to break the tie.


Photo Criteria

Photo must include the entire View of the mouth and tail of the fish must be unobstructed.

You may use your hand, fish grippers, or stringers to help retain your fish during the photographing It is up the angler to do their best to protect the fish while taking the photo.

All fish must face the left with some part of the fish touching the “zero” marker on your measuring device.

The dorsal fin must be facing upward. Upside down fish will not be scored.

Get the most length out of your fish without harming the You may not harm, mangle, mash, or maul the fish for any reason. Fish whose jaws appear to be damaged for any reason may be disqualified.

You may pinch the tail prior to capturing photo provided it does not harm the However, the tail must be freely lying on the board in the photo. So, you may not use your hand or, say, tape to pinch the tail during the photographing of the fish.

Any fish that appears to be sick or dead may be disqualified by the judges.

Markings on the measuring device must be clear and legible to the ¼”.

Photos must be taken directly from above, not at an angle.

Each tournament’s assigned identifier must be visible in each photo.

The photo must be taken by same angler who caught the fish.

Action cameras (e.g. GoPro) may be used. However, it is the anglers’ responsibility to ensure all photo criteria are met.


Measuring Devices

Hawg Trough measuring devices are highly recommended in all NAKA Tournament events. Other bump/measuring type boards are however acceptable at Throwdown events if pre-approved by Tournament Director. The angler assumes the risk that pictures on these type boards are often unclear and accurate scoring can suffer.

No sharing of measuring devices during tournament hours.

Measuring device may be checked at any time.

If measure device cannot be read by the judges, measurement will be rounded down to nearest legible Please take a marker or paint pen to color the raised graduations on the Hawg Trough to add contrast.

Anglers are encouraged to wet your Hawg Trough prior to placing a fish on the device.



Rules, Interpretations, and Protests

All rules and their interpretations are decided by Tournament Director.

Tournament Director’s decisions are final.

Any protest shall be immediately directed to the Tournament Director.

Once prizes have been awarded, tournament results are declared final.

Each contestant may be required to submit to a polygraph examination at a time and location determined by the Tournament Director following the end of the competition in each tournament and abides by its Failure to pass the polygraph will result in disqualification.

Cheating on this trail may constitute a ban from other events hosted by other Tampering with a sports contest is a Class A misdemeanor in the State of Alabama.

Rules were updated April 30, 2015.