It was what I was hoping for.
They were everywhere.
I took Jeff to a spot down on the James River below Hopewell and got into them quickly. Minnows on the bottom as well as under bobbers didn't last long. We lost count of the mid to upper 30" gar. The hard part was letting them run after they picked up the bait. If it was too earlier, we could feel them drop and the minnow would come back missing scales. When we timed it right, we were treated to fast streaks and tail walking mayhem. Anytime you have a 40 plus inch fish jump clear out of the water multiple times then thrash right next to your kayak with mouth wide open and full of please don't get in the kayak yet, adrenaline will flow.
Over the span of a few hours I tallied 5 citations up to a little over 44". Jeff got the timing right as well and landed a citation also right at 40".
After running out of minnows, I found a nice channel with a sharp drop off. We dropped chunks of gizzard shad on 8/0 circle carolina rigs and I quickly had a strong take down. The heavy catfish swung my kayak around in a hurry but somehow the circle hook came out. Not too long after, this 41"er gave me a chance for redemption.
I wish I had brought my scale because it had been eating very, very well.
The trophy blue catfish was a most welcome cherry on top of a an already awesome day.