The Return of Big Fish Doc
September 7, 2016
Doc was my afternoon client and after yesterday, we hoped for even bigger! He had fought and landed some good fish but I really wanted him to tangle with something larger today. Not the best conditions or time of the day but we headed out in pursuit of even one big bite. We arrived to find that the conditions hadn’t changed, but it had gotten even hotter. Thank god for the top or we would have suffered more than we did! Immediately after the lines were in the water, the cover went up. Finally, shade! I knew it was going to be difficult but had the confidence to stick it out in the chance that we would tangle with another giant. Plenty of goby bites had me monitoring the lines, checking them often. We moved a couple of times as well to get back on the fish as all we had to show for our efforts were false strikes. Eventually our wait was rewarded when I felt the fish pick up the bait and raised the rod to lock it up. We were on and Doc was about to land his largest fish yet! It acted kind of strange for a while with just dead weight and not much movement. This is usually a sign of something epic in size! Doc muscled it up and it went right back down. It was like trying to lift a heavy anchor. When it finally realized it was hooked, the line took off. Although I expected the fish to jump, it never really left the water. It just stayed under the boat going from one side to the other, causing Doc to do the sturgeon shuffle around the two motors. This went on for at least ten minutes before we caught a glimpse of what he was dealing with. It was not only large, but it was oh so long! I hoped it had the girth to go with the length and once in the net, I realized that it did. Definitely his personal best! We had quite the ordeal with the taking of the pics but somehow managed to get a bunch of good ones before the release. Slimed and exhausted Doc washed up while I reset the lines, hoping for another. Later on after multiple drive byes, I felt another bite and locked her up solid. Doc took the rod and proceeded to do battle with another monster. It acted a lot like the last one with docile movements but plenty of weight. Runs were short but heaviness was on the other end of the rod throughout the entire battle. Just like the previous fish, this one hung under the boat most of the time with the exception of a few long runs. No jumps but several line rises making us think she was about to breach. After what seemed like 15 minutes, Doc finally brought it up for us to see. It was equally as long as his first one but much wider! He steered it towards me and it was ours. I wasn’t looking forward to getting her in the boat and didn’t know how Doc was going to manage to hold it for pics. I literally had to pick it up and place it in his hands, on his lap. Damn near threw my back out doing it too! Even at that, Doc was struggling as he never really got a good hold on the fish. I shot quickly in fear of the fish moving and after many good pics, we both heaved it over the side & back into the water. This was a beast and topped the first fish earlier, considerably! We were done here and cleaned everything up, heading for much smaller fish to end the day. We fished bass & walleye for about an hour and boated many of them before calling it quits at 5:00. What an unbelievable afternoon of fishing in some of the worst conditions, but we got it done. I don’t know what tomorrow will bring but it’s gonna be tough to top today. Regardless, we’ll be there giving it a try. Who knows, maybe he’ll tangle with one even bigger! Tough act to follow but I guess anything’s possible!