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My Record Trout

Record trout for me that is, certainly not a record. But a very nice fish indeed.

Update: I am mistaken: my brother reminds me that back in 1982 I caught a 22-inch rainbow at Snowmass Lake in early June. I distinctly remember the event: a big hump appeared in the inch of slush-snow on top of the completely-covered lake; the trout grabbed my Mepps spinner and yanked. Anyway, this 2016 catch is my best catch in 34 years...oh sh*t I’m getting too darn old.

Update 2: in mid-November I hauled in a 23 inch 5-pound rainbow from the same lake. It was not quite as stocky, so it was only half a pound heavier even though it was a full 2 inches longer.

I have a deep respect for nature, that is, respect for all living things, but also the natural cycle. Trout eat stuff, and I eat trout. That is the way of it. Take what can be used, and use it wisely—never waste.

Most of the trout I catch get returned unharmed to the water. But the trout in Saddlebag Lake* are superb eating once above a certain size (16 inches or so): they look and eat just like a king salmon (orange flesh)—this one did.

See also: Cooking Fresh-Caught Fish on a Portable Yakitori Grill.

* Saddlebag lake is stocked with thousands of trout each year, mostly in the 9 to 12 inch range. There is not likely any natural reproduction due to lack of spawning areas. This 21-inch specimen looks to be one that was in the lake for some years (based on teeth and other attributes).

This hefty and nicely fat Onchorynchus mykiss took a small crappie jig about 15 feet down, on a day when fishing was very slow. Caught with a G Loomis rod and Shimano Stella reel and Berkley Vanish 6 lb test.

The Largest Trout I’ve Ever Caught: 21.2-inch 4.6 pounds Rainbow Trout (Onchorynchus mykiss)
f2.8 @ 1/1000 sec, ISO 80; 2016-09-27 14:55:39
DSC-RX100M4 + 24-70mm F1.8-2.8 @ 39mm equiv (14.3mm)

[low-res image for bot]

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