It was the season finale and the last day of alligator season had the hunters fighting for their last tags. Troy and RJ were going for the title, while Ron was just hoping to void not tagging out for the first time in a long time. Liz and Kristi wanted to finish their very successful season on a high note.
Troy went out at sunrise to get his last tags. Troy title as the “king of the swamp” was in severe jeopardy as RJ and Jay Paul were going for a record on the other side of the swamps. Troy’s decision to help a friend in need put him up against a hard spot, but his reputation had him going for monster gators to end the season. His first gator of the day was nice 7-footer, but Troy wanted double. Troy was aware of the pressure that came with his title and he was not scared of the task. With 7 tags left he found a a torn-up swamp with a big feisty gator on a line. Clint made a good shot and the two hauled another nice one, but Troy promised to get the big one. Troy’s area was looking fished-out, but Troy decided to go after a secrete monster gator Troy had up his sleeve. Troy’s gamble for the monster gator paid off with him filling all of his other tags on the way to his trophy for the season. Troy got a very heavy line on his last gator of the day and he dragged the huge final gator into the boat. It was beautiful alligator at 13 feet 7 inches and the biggest of the year. Troy may have caught fewer gators than RJ, but he definitely caught bigger ones and he also showed his sense of community.
Bruce went out before dawn to try and get an early start on a 45 tag goal. It was the worst season Bruce had ever had and he was just struggling to get all his tags filled. Ron declared he was taking no prisoners on the day. He got one very early when Ron shot one in open water. It was one down and a pile of gators left to catch. Tyler even licked the first gator to give Bruce some hope that he was ready for a huge day too. The boys got a quick 7 tags, but the huge goal of 38 more was a daunting challenge. There was no quit in Bruce as they got to their next down line. The crazy gator clamped onto Ron’s rifle, but eventually Ron was free to get the money shot. As the day dragged on Ron kept racking up gators, but one beast nearly got Bruce’s faithful dog Tyler until Ron shot him. The certainty of not tagging out hit Bruce, but he kept his head up and wanted to finish with as many as he could. The bad year did nothing to stop Bruce’s confidence and enthusiasm.
Liz and Kristi only needed 7 gators to tag out. She decided to go back to her Daddy’s honey hole for the last day and go out with some monster gators. The ladies arrived to their grounds with disappointing lines still up. Liz found the culprit to her bad fishing; dead fish floating in the area were giving the gators free meals. She had to move all her lines to a new area. Liz and Kristi found some unexpected bad luck on their last day, but after they reset their lines, the gators started to bite. The girls made quick work of their third gator of the day and with 4 more the stress level was rising. With two lines left to check and one gator needed the girls were seeing the finish line. They got to their last line and found a down line, but an empty hook. Liz decided to just sit and wait to hit a gator in open water. The ladies waited patiently and both fired at the same time. They got a huge “son of a bitch” of a gator and looked back at an unbelievable season.
RJ and Jay Paul took on 500 tags this season and they only needed 11 more in the last day. RJ wanted to prove a point with his record haul on the season and he also wanted a huge gator for the last hook of the year. Their first gator was barely hooked, but RJ was able to quickly wrestle him for a good shot from Jay Paul. The boys were making quick work of their last tags, but with only 3 tags left to fill they still didn’t have their signature beast gator. RJ stuck his arm in the water and was lucky to get it all back. The gator was a 700 pounder and 9 feet long, but they wanted an even bigger alligator to finish the season. The guys caught a lucky break for their 2nd to last gator of the season with a beautiful big boy that Jay Paul was able to easily hit in open water. RJ then saw the big alligator he wanted to finish the season with and the two went after the beast. RJ hooked the “hand burner” gator and got a big fight for his last gator of the season. The last gator of the season was a very nice one at 13 feet long and it was their incredible 500th gator of the season.
The sun set on gator season and RJ and Troy both went to collect on one final pay day.