just had SNBF V (that's 5) on March 10th. Teams VC/LA, OC, and SD pounding our coast line to catch the biggest bat ray... for what? nothing more than bragging rights. i was on the SD team. we decided it would be best to get few guys out of the bay and try for some rays in the surf due to the gruniun run. well it was a good call, i had two beaches i wanted to fish and due to not being able to do prefishing thursday and friday i opted for the one i most recently knew there were rays. arrived at 4pm to birds diving, small surf, dolphins schooling bait and the clouds rolling in thick... got hit pretty quick on squid and found a mauled bait when i checked it. sent it back out and my dad got hit on mackerel but it didnt want to actually eat the bait. soon after i'm watching both my rods get taps when my lighter rod with 20lb and squid goes bendo and the clicker starts screaming... FISH ON! first run took me down to 1/3 of my spool, 15 - 20 mins later i see the tail and relieved its the right kind. lip hooked gettin a tape on him i usually use a soft tape but the white doesnt show up in pics very well, so for the money shot i pushed both sides down and came up with this. i knew it was a good ray and a good shot at the title, but knew we had to get our baits back out there because there's much larger models around. after a bout 30 mins we decided to go see how the bay crew was doing. LA was hooking up all day right from the start, they probably landed over 30 rays. they're biggest ray came in at 48" OC had guys in the bays and on the sand. they came up with a 47" i went to the bay after it got dark to hook up with the SD crew and see what had been caught... alot of baits in the water there but the biggest and one of only 4 or 5 caught was 49" and at the beginning of the day. awesome time, LA whooped our asses in numbers but we took the win for SD with my 49.5". if you haven't given Mud Marlin (bat rays or Gulf and east coast Eagle rays) a shot, you ought to. some of these beasts will come in over 50" and school you on anything less than 30lb with 300yrds to back it up.