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Nice Northern

posted on 02/15/2011
Took an easy fishing day on Grindstone Lake on Feb 8. The temperature was in the twenties, so I did not use my portable shelter. Instead, I just placed a tip-up 15 yards behind the truck and set a rattle reel off the end of the truck's lowered tailgate. I had a heater going inside and the topper door was also open. It was cozy warm inside and I eventually fell asleep. About 45 minutes into my slumber, I awakened to the rattle reel making a ferocious ruckus. As I slipped off the tailgate and applied some pressure to the fishing line, I could tell that this was no ordinary fish. As I recently lost a really nice northern at the hole trying to edge it out, I took extra caution with this one. After several minutes of 'gain and lose yards', I could see the northern's snout at the bottom of the hole. Gently edging the line up, the fish's nose finally broke the edge of the water. Seeing a gaping wide mouth big enough to stick my fist in, I VERY carefully slide my hand down the edge of the hole and locked in. When the northern realized he'd been had, he demonstrated his discontent. But as he began to resist, I lifted the bruiser out of the hole. Once his head cleared the water, I didn't think the shank of his body would end and was impressed at the size of it.

Measuring the beauty, the tape showed the beast to be right at 40 inches and the girth was 20 1/2 inches. On the scale, he weighed in at 20 pounds, 2 ounces. I was amazed at the gut on this thing, as it seemed to have a pot belly that reached right up to its gills. But then, Grindstone has so much for them to eat it's really not that surprising.

I wanted to release it, but the gills on one side were cut from the fishing line. Ok, I'll spend the money and have this thing mounted.

I never did finish my nap.

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