Shimano Curado 200e7
6’9 St. Croix Medium-Heavy action rod
12lb Segaur fluorocarbon line
Yellow River in Webster, Wisconsin
It was a good day of fishing highlighted by many smallmouth, largemouth, and northern pike caught. It was calm, sunny, and about 86 degrees. The trip started out a little rough as my buddy and I attempted to put a 16 foot John boat and 25hp motor on the Yellow River (Webster, Wisconsin), which flows at an average of only 3 foot depth. But things turned quickly in our favor as we boated 15 plus fish in the first 2 hours. We were pitching swig jigs paired with 4-inch crazy leg crawdad trailers, simply fishing for river smallies. Now I’ve fished this river since I was a young boy, always boating a decent amount of fish. But today was different; the number of fish we caught before 3 pm was uncommon. We were approaching my favorite section of the river, a quarter mile stretch of downed trees and overhanging reed walls where an abundant amount of smallmouth hide from prey and ambush when the opportunity is right. I had told my buddy to back on his Go-Pro because “we’re going to catch a lot of fish on this little stretch.” Well that wasn’t the case at all; we didn’t catch one single fish on that stretch. I was confused, but still continued to cast as we entered the final part of the bend. But then as a big cloud crossed into the suns path I got a big hit. Immediately I told him I had a big fish and “I think it is a pike.” This fish was slowly moving downstream dragging the entire boat while I held my drag tight fearing the fish would take me into the reeds and snap the line. At this point we still couldn’t see the fish (because of the big cloud), but we got a glimpse of a red tail reflecting in the water and my buddy says “Oh, its one of those red horse carp. Oh no it’s a Muskie!” The fish really started to take off now, dashing back and forth through the shallows of the Yellow River that gets no wider than 60 feet. My heart was racing because with only 12-pound test and no leader the line was bound to snap. After a few missed attempts of netting the fish, the fish swam under the boat. I could feel that the fish wasn’t fighting though, and I guided his head right into the net and we landed the Muskie! After yelling at the top of our lungs for 30 seconds, we calmed down, measured the fish and released it. It was incredible that my buddy caught the whole thing on tape, as I can relive this memory for the rest of my life. Here is the one-minute edit of the video. Enjoy!
By: Luke Wians