Nice Smoker there! Been a long while since I did any king fishing. Was always a blast when you'd get in on them. I've got lost cobia/ling stories that still make me want to cry. As far as size limit, try about 37" which you can keep one oversize, but not in out of state waters.
I am on the gulf side, red regs might be differnt but we don't ever fish for them.
Ling is 31 to the inside fork of the tail and we got 3rd in the local tournament this year with a 48 pounder.
Kings are slow this year. The bait is there, the fish are there, but no one is catching many. We average one a trip this year vs 2 or 3 per trip this time last year. With the Rain this spring and the cold front it set the whole panhandle anual cycle back by a month. So everything was late, spanish,sharks, flounder pompano and its not cause we killed them all.
Yesterday the gospel /country music singer from wyoming (montana ?) was on the boat and caught a 20lb + king on a (penn) 500L spooled with 30 lb mono and a 20 lb flourocarbon leader and circle hook.
I powergaffed it with a grunt at the first opportunity. I hit it 2 inches down and back from his gill rakers (spinal and heart peirced nearly simultaneously ) and it was dead before it came in the boat. It was going by me at 5- 10 mph and I reached out and ripped it from the water.
The exhale / grunt is both anti hernia and an massive adrenaline release. It makes it all flow just like you see it in your mind reguardless of what body part complains or tries to quit on you.
Actually, mine is bruaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. But thats not near as good as ARR ~!
Even the capn busted a grin on that. You only get one shot on a green king on mono and I wasn't going to waste it cause they sucked and needed fish in the box.
The 8 year old, he had natural talent also, he made the all star team. (And I made a fisaherman for life.) (He put half the fish in the boat and outfished his older broither and pawpaw combined.)