As a follow up to last weeks story from Monte, below is the story behind that Trophy Northern.
Here is the story that goes along with the picture:
I had a 5 year old grandson on his first trip to Canada and my 13 year old grandson who was on his third trip. We were fishing for Walleye about a mile from one of our other favorite holes that we had name King Kong hole. The year before I had a West Point Cadet in the boat fishing with me (his dad was a former student/player of mine years before) and he had a two pound Walleye on the line and almost had it to the top of water right next to the boat. As he started to reach over and pick it up and huge Northern Pike floated near to the top of the water and just watched as the Walleye flapped around in the water. I yelled at the kid to put the Walleye back into the water (was still hooked) and I would try to net the Big Pike if he grabbed onto the Walleye. He came up again,,,,,did NOT STRIKE but instead just looked at the Walleye and slowly floated down,,,,,did not swim down but just floated down. It was the biggest Northern Pike I had ever seen and from that day forward we call that hole,,,,,King Kong hole.
So now I have the two grandsons and have just motored over to King Kong hole. I drop my 1/8 ounce jig which was tipped with a night crawler and just put my pole down so that I could help the 5 year old get his pole in the water. We are still drifting from the wake of motor and I assumed I was stuck on a rock because my pole almost went into the drink. I did not even jerk on the pole thinking I did not have a fish on. When I put pressure on the pole I thought I was hooked on a rock and then the rock moved. I then thought it was huge tree branch as they will come up and sink back down,,,,,,many times over the years I have fought a tree limb to only have my boat partner get the last laugh as I pull the wooden fish impersonator to the boat. After about 5 minutes I started to think or really hope that it was a fish. After 10 minutes I was getting a little more excited but also taking my time and with ten pound test line I continued to feed line back to the limb/fish as I never trust my drag with a big fish.
Twenty minutes and about 400 yards of floating along a shoreline, parallel and not into the shore which would have been to the fish’s advantage it came to the top of the water. I was shocked as to how large it was and started yelling at my oldest grandson to grab the “Walleye Net”. It came back up and my grandson was yelling like crazy and I thought he was going in the drink as he was running from the front of the boat to the back and standing on the seats rather than in the bottom of the boat.
It was hard for me to calm him down as I was on the verge of a heart attack. My other grandson was too young to realize that this was in fact not only the largest fish I have caught it was the largest Northern Pike that any of my different groups of at that time 45 some years of fishing with CFI.
Finally after a great 45 minute fight we had his head into the Walleye net and lucky for us he was finished because the rest of him would not fit into the next. As my grandson held the head in the net I picked up the back of the fish and lifted it into the boat. I was thrilled to be lucky enough to hook such a monster, lucky again to get him in on ten pound test line,,,,,,no leader, and the 1/8 jig, thrilled and lucky again to have two of my grandsons in the boat to share the big catch and the biggest thrill of all was after 5 minutes of stroking her tail she took off and dove back to the bottom. In my book the biggest Northern I have ever caught and I am convinced the same fish that I had seen the year before to be release back to his life in the lake to thrill someone else and hopefully me again is worth its weight in gold.
The big girl was 44 inches long and was right at 24 pounds, not that I could tell but according to everything I have read there is about a 90% chance it was female.
All the big Northern I have caught on Lake Murdock in July have all been jigging for Walleye. We occasionally cast for Pike but the biggest I have caught casting was right at 12 pounds and that was early in the morning.
Ending note: I was so excited to get him back into the water I cut the line off and forgot to take the jig out of his lip,,,,,,so if you are on Murdock and catch a 30 pound Northern Pike (I assume she has gained 5 pounds or so by now) let me know.