BWCA Massive Lake Trout - Fishing Opener 2021 Boundary Waters Fishing Forum
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ericinely
distinguished member (183)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/11/2021 02:24PM  
I finally did it! I caught one of those once-in-a-lifetime fish that is likely older than I am. I have caught a couple in the low 30" range, but nothing I've experienced in the boundary waters, including 40" pike, was anything like this battle...so fortunate to have caught it all on camera (including the hookset).
Here's a short video of the fight:



Massive Lake Trout Video
 
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TuscaroraBorealis
distinguished member(4857)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
06/11/2021 03:22PM  
Wow!
 
Savage Voyageur
distinguished member(13897)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
06/11/2021 03:43PM  
What a giant of a fish. Congratulations
 
thegildedgopher
distinguished member(1181)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/11/2021 05:44PM  
Congrats Eric! How does it feel to catch a fish that’s older than you?
 
MichiganMan
distinguished member (147)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/11/2021 09:17PM  
Well done. What a great fish. Good job on the release.
 
lundojam
distinguished member(2594)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2021 07:39AM  
NICE! Congratulations!
Even without video, you would have remembered every detail for the rest of your life. Thanks for sharing.
 
mpswid0
member (28)member
 
06/12/2021 09:34AM  
That’s a massive fish. We’ll done. ??????
 
06/12/2021 09:55AM  
good on you getting everything ready to minimize the time spent out of water. should be a training video for everyone on how to do it. awesome
 
06/12/2021 12:03PM  
That was awesome! Thanks for sharing the video with us.
 
QueticoMike
distinguished member(5264)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
06/12/2021 12:35PM  
That's awesome! Congratulations!
 
OldTripper
distinguished member (178)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2021 04:47PM  
Congratulations, Eric!!
What an amazing catch!
 
LittleRiver
senior member (58)senior membersenior member
 
06/12/2021 06:05PM  
Holy smokes what a fish!

Well done!
 
06/12/2021 07:14PM  
Boom! What a trout!
 
myceliaman
distinguished member(915)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2021 10:37PM  
Dude!! Awesome!!!
 
DRob1992
senior member (55)senior membersenior member
 
06/12/2021 10:55PM  
Sweet man! Congrats!
 
06/12/2021 11:49PM  
Oh my gosh! Great work (again) Eric!
 
06/13/2021 12:23AM  
Nice fish!

What do you use for electronics/depth finder.

T
 
mgraber
distinguished member(1245)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/13/2021 02:27AM  
Nice! That looked like a lot of fun!
 
06/13/2021 12:02PM  
Length was?
 
06/13/2021 02:33PM  
bobbernumber3: "Length was?"

In the video it said between 38 and 39 inches.

I’ve seen 40 inch trout caught but nothing like that girth. Surprised it only weighed 17.5 pounds…Eric did you guys weigh it or is that an estimate based on measures?

T
 
06/13/2021 02:37PM  
On Sarah lake I hooked one that fought exactly like that but it spooled me. 15# fire line on a heavy rod and just stripped the line off over time... Helpless…with the wind my wife couldn’t control the canoe enough…not her fault but if she could kept me out of the wind more I would of had a chance…so I think your partner gets a small assist on canoe control :)

T
 
Bentpine
 
06/13/2021 05:52PM  
Awesome video! Great to see the lure and the jigging technique.
 
BearBurrito
distinguished member(927)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/14/2021 10:42AM  
That's great!
 
06/14/2021 11:21PM  
Your gonna need a bigger boat.
 
jackpotjohnny48
member (20)member
 
06/15/2021 03:17AM  
Great fish! Thanks for sharing the video.

You mentioned that you caught that on a Rapala Snap Rap.

It appears as if they come in two sizes - a 6 cm size which weighs 5/16 ounce and an 8 cm size which weighs 7/8 ounce.

Am I correct to assume that you were using the larger size? (8cm and 7/8 ounce).

Please clarify.

Thanks!

 
06/15/2021 07:09AM  
that is AWESOME ! CONGRATS !
 
ericinely
distinguished member (183)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/15/2021 07:30AM  
Thanks for the kind words everyone!! Sorry that I havent been on here in a while to respond, it has been bonkers here in Ely at Piragis...we are barely keeping our heads above water with the huge influx of people into the BWCA (yes, even more than last year).

I did have a boga grip (spring scale, 50lb capacity) for measurement, but I was so nervous/excited that I am not even sure if I got the fish fully out of the water for an accurate measurement. Based on comments from others who have caught comparable fish, it is probably an inaccurate measurement. I hate hanging big fish by their jaw, so it was only out of the water on the boga for about a second, so I am guessing it wasn't accurate. It was about as close to 20# and 40" as you can get without going over, we'll just leave it at that. Now I have a new benchmark to chase...

I believe the snap rap was the 7/8oz size, but I am not sure. I have size 8-9 (medium/large) hands, so as you can tell in the video, not a huge bait. That is my prefered size for targeting fish in that 20-50' range.

I use a humminbird helix 5 with a bunch of RAM mount components. I am currently working on a blog post detailing my sonar setup, so stay tuned. It is one of the questions I get asked the most, so I wanted to help others build the setup if they're looking for a solid canoe mount sonar system. It took me years to figure it out, so I will be sure to share my setup.

Yes, Joe does deserve a lot of credit for boat control. I always joke that in a tandem canoe, the person controlling the boat, landing the fish, etc., always deserves 49% of the credit for the fish caught by their boat-mate. When you fish tandem, you are targeting fish together, and success is generally increased significantly when you have an effective partner. Find yourself a good canoe fishing partner, and you will catch more fish guaranteed.

Again, thanks for the kind words...I am really happy I get to bring my virtual friends along with me on my fishing adventures.

 
06/15/2021 10:14PM  
A chart from the North American Fisheries society lists a 39.5 inch lake trout at 23.2 pounds. At that length how plump they are will make them vary 5 pounds either way.

I am glad you didn't weight her, yes it would be nice for any anglers ego, including mine. But much more important knowing that fish which was close to 40 years old or older is still out there and catchable for someone else. Thank you for the good release. Congrats in order.

My best have been numerous ones in the 35 inch range and one around 38 inches. Yes all released.
 
Basspro69
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06/15/2021 10:22PM  
Incredible fish congratulations!!!
 
jdoutdoors
distinguished member (218)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/16/2021 07:11PM  
What a fantastic catch!! My group chased big lakers on LLC back on 2019 and couldn't find 'em. It seems you did though ;) Major congrats, Eric!
 
GoWhenYouCan
member (28)member
 
06/17/2021 09:59PM  
Congratulations Eric on the beautiful laker.

The 17.5 lbs. is definitely shy. We use girth x girth x length divided by 800 to determine the weight of our lake trout. We don't weigh any of our larger trout any more but when we checked the formula in the past it was quite accurate. The 40" trout I caught last year had a 24" girth, which was massive and 2" more than any laker we had ever caught before. From the video I would estimate the girth at around 20". A 39" length would put the weight at 19.5 lbs. A flexible sewing type tape measure works great for measurements. After some quick pictures the fish can be immediately returned to the water for measurements, then released.

A note to anyone fishing lakers in the next few weeks. The surface water temperatures are ridiculously high. We just got back from our trip and the majority of the days the surface temps were in the low to mid 70's with 82 being the highest reading. Lake trout cannot tolerate these temperatures for an extended period of time. The majority of the larger trout we caught we didn't even photograph. Just got them unhooked and bombed them straight down to get to cooler temps as soon as possible. Please take great care under these conditions to safely release these rare beauties to fight again and give another angler the thrill of a lifetime.
 
ericinely
distinguished member (183)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/19/2021 03:04PM  
Thanks for that rundown! I do have a soft-sided tape measure, but I was too nervous about getting the fish back quickly and forgot. Oh well...I'll just have to catch a larger one and get a more accurate measurement.

How do you get an accurate length measurement with the fish in the water and a soft-sided tape? I really should just carry around one of those massive musky bump-boards for a more accurate measurement. I have an ultralight one, but it is only 32" long so that wouldn't have helped...
 
thegildedgopher
distinguished member(1181)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/19/2021 05:22PM  
We use the rapala magnum 60” folding ruler. I think the hinges technically disqualify it from tournament use, not a concern for us. It folds down to about 20 inches, doesn’t weigh much, and is only about $15.
 
06/19/2021 08:32PM  
GoWhenYouCan: "Congratulations Eric on the beautiful laker.


The 17.5 lbs. is definitely shy. We use girth x girth x length divided by 800 to determine the weight of our lake trout. We don't weigh any of our larger trout any more but when we checked the formula in the past it was quite accurate. The 40" trout I caught last year had a 24" girth, which was massive and 2" more than any laker we had ever caught before. From the video I would estimate the girth at around 20". A 39" length would put the weight at 19.5 lbs. A flexible sewing type tape measure works great for measurements. After some quick pictures the fish can be immediately returned to the water for measurements, then released.


A note to anyone fishing lakers in the next few weeks. The surface water temperatures are ridiculously high. We just got back from our trip and the majority of the days the surface temps were in the low to mid 70's with 82 being the highest reading. Lake trout cannot tolerate these temperatures for an extended period of time. The majority of the larger trout we caught we didn't even photograph. Just got them unhooked and bombed them straight down to get to cooler temps as soon as possible. Please take great care under these conditions to safely release these rare beauties to fight again and give another angler the thrill of a lifetime.
"


Agree-time with warm temps take it easy fishing lake trout.
 
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