King Mackerel King, Captain Eris Jones Named “Legend of Saltwater Fishing”
The first time I remember seeing Eris Jones, was at a small King Mackerel fishing tournament In Sneads Ferry, NC in 2014. This great little fishing town is located just north of Wilmington, NC, and south of Jacksonville, NC. He was living in a small camper trailer just a few feet from the marina and the Intracoastal Waterway. At that time, Eris was fishing on a small center console boat that seemed too small for fishing in anything other than a creek. But I quickly came to know that nothing would stop this guy. The next boat Eris fished from was not a whole lot bigger, but Eris went blasting out the inlet on a King Mackerel Tournament Day as if he was in a 32-foot Contender and his hair on fire.
Over time, Eris and I became good friends. He became one the first contributing writers for what was then our Coastal Carolina Fisherman Online Magazine and now the Saltwater Angler Online Magazine. He still brings our magazine great advice on King Mackerel fishing. He has a knack for communicating in a way that’s easy to understand and detailed at the same time. Over the years he became a mainstay at the many fishing seminars, boat shows, and other locations representing the Saltwater Angler magazine.
In 2015 I attended the Southern Kingfish Association National Championship to do a story regarding the event. I was standing on the dock at the location where the contestants floated by to have their pictures taken. I took a picture of Eris holding up a pretty big King and as it turned out, his team was the 2015 National Champions. The picture I took of Eris and the big King was the only one I took that day, and it was the only one I needed after all. He made fishing history while fishing from a boat far smaller than many of his competitors, and it didn’t seem to faze him.
Since that Championship win, Eris continues to compete in the SKA events while taking numerous point wins, in you might have guessed, the small boat divisions. He’s now added to the fishing team his girlfriend, Brenda Cooper. After meeting only a few years ago, Eris began showing Brenda the secrets to great King Mackerel fishing, and soon she became a champion in SKA events in the Ladies division.
When he’s off the water Eris plays a key role not only in the Southeast offshore fishing community but also plays a key role in his local Sneads Ferry community. He has developed fundraising fishing tournaments and community events for his fellow anglers, and his neighbors as well. I try to never miss one of his neighborhood “Pig-Pickins”. It’s always a relaxing getaway with great food and more importantly, great people.
Eris has come a long time since the first day I met him at the small King Mackerel Tournament in Sneads Ferry, NC. Today, he and Brenda live in a breathtaking home on the Intracoastal Waterway that comes with a private dock. At that dock sits a 32-foot, 2023 Contender center console boat. It’s rigged and ready for the next King Mackerel fishing tournament. Many things in Eris’ life changed for the better, but he remains a fierce competitor and inspiration to his friends like me and many others. Because of that, Saltwater Angler Online Magazine has selected Captain Eris Jones to join 6 other anglers from the southeast United States as a “Legend of Saltwater Fishing”.
Eris, Thank You for the contribution to the sport and its community.