Robbie Hammond of Discovery Bay, CA poses here with the largest lingcod ever caught on rod and reel.
Hammond caught the beast in the Gulf of Alaska while fishing with Capt. Steve Smith of Capt. Steve’s Fishing Lodge.
The ling tipped the scales to 82 pounds, 6 ounces and beat the previous record by about a pound.
The story of the catch may even be more impressive than the fish itself. Capt. Smith said that Hammond, his dad and a group of friends were fishing the first week of August with him. Early in the morning, they made a stop and everybody dropped the jigs over the side.
They immediately got tied into a triple hook up on heavy fish. Hammond, his dad Allan and one of their buddies, Brent, fought their fish for a half hour. Forty minutes into the battle, Brent’s fish was the first to come to the surface…
It was “just” a 50-pound lingcod.
One of the other fish was swimming up against the current, so Capt. Steve had to fire up the engine and follow it When they slowed down, Robbie’s fish came up and over the side.
“As soon as the fish landed on the deck I realized it was a monster,” says Capt. Steve. “After a moment of shock, I turned to Robbie and asked do you know what you have here?” Robbie and the gang all asked what? not realizing the significance of the catch…I told them that this was most likely a world record lingcod.”
But there was no time to celebrate — they still had an even bigger fish hooked up.
For another 10 minutes Allan fought his leviathan and eventually worked it within gaffing range. Soon, a 210-pound Pacific halibut was on board, finishing off one of the greatest triple headers of all time.
As the day had just begun, the group continued fishing and didn’t get the lingcod onto a scale for a solid 5 hours. If all the paper work goes through at the International Game Fish Association, Robbie will be the new King of Lings.