Fishing in Rivers Inlet, BC, angler Gayle Gordon landed a Chinook that may have smashed the World Record…
If these massive kings don’t make you weak in the knees, you may want to take up another sport! :)
King Salmon are awesome…and the truly giant ones are unbelievably special creatures. Here’s a list of 10 (15 actually) massive kings that will make you weak in the knees…
Over 100 Pounds!
In August of 2021, Gayle Gordon caught just may be the largest sport-caught king salmon (present day) ever. The monster bit a trolled herring in the saltwater of British Columbia’s fabled River’s Inlet. After a couple quick measurements, she amazingly released the brute go so he could spawn.
Because she let the fish go, Gordon don’t get an official weight on the salmon but when put it into the ol’ tried and true 750 weight formula (Weight = Length x Girth x Girth /750) and it came out to 105.9 pounds!
Watch the VIDEO
South American Beasts
South America seems to be the place for giant kings these days, specifically Patagonia. In 2018, Rogerio Audbert from Brazil caught and released this 90-pound class leviathan on a fly in Argentina. In the photo below, Jasper Pääkkönen from Finland (you know him from the hit TV show Vikings) caught one in the upper 80’s in the same area. And would you look at the size of that adipose fin! Sadly, a soon to be built dam will block off the spawning habitat in this system so this new fishery may already be headed towards a thing of the past :(
Read more at https://www.solidadventures.com/glacier-king/
(San Juan Island Historical Museum photo)
Chrome Kenai Monster
Steve Huckey of Arizona caught and released this beastly king on the Kenai River with Greg Brush of EZ Limit Guide Service. It was 55.5″ x 34″ and estimated to weigh in the mid to high 80’s.
Close to 80 Pounds!
The Kenai River in Alaska has pumped out more monster Chinook than anywhere. This massive 53.5″ x 34″ buck weighed somewhere in the neighborhood of 80 pounds!
On July 15, 2009, angler Joel Atchison caught this massive Chinook on the Kenai River in Alaska. Guide John Whitlatch of Reel Adventures says he’s not sure if the fish was a world record or not…because he and Aitchison decided to forgo their own glory and instead let the big beast go and make babies. Very, very cool!
The Biggest of All!
The biggest king salmon ever caught was this 126-pound monster that was caught in a fish trap near Petersburg, Alaska in 1949. My friend and fellow Alaska guide, Chris Sessions, sent me this pic and said that a friend of his has one of the three replica mounts of the behemoth on his wall.
All I can say is OMG!!!
The King of Kings
No list of massive king salmon would be complete without the current All-Tackle IGFA All-Tackle World Record 97-pound, 4-ounce king caught by Les Anderson in the Kenai River back in May of 1985. The record fish measured a mind blowing 58.5″ x 37″ and was probably a 100 pounder considering it wasn’t weighed for several hours after it was caught.
You can read the whole story HERE
Imagine the surprise of California Department of Fish & game biologists when they found this Godzilla-sized Chinook carcass in Battle Creek, a tributary of the Sacramento River, nearly 300 miles upstream, from the ocean! The fish was almost 51 inches long and estimated to weigh 88 pounds… dead! In his prime, out in the salt, the fish could have been pushing 100 pounds!
See more photos HERE
83-Pound BC Beast (Released!)
Deborah Whitman-Perry of Newmarket, Ont., caught & released this huge king that weighed 83 pounds, three ounces in August 2012 at River’s Inlet, BC while fishing with guide Tyler Mills of Good Hope Cannery. Again, I’m loving the fact that people are letting these hogs go! Read the whole story HERE
The Good Ol’ Days: Columbia River June Hogs
Before all the dams royally messed the Columbia River up for good, it had some monster Chinook! Bound for the upper end of the watershed, “June Hogs” sometimes topped 100 pounds. The construction of Grand Coulee Dam, which has no fish passage, ultimately did these massive beasts in for good. :(
So, considering I’ve never caught a king remotely as big as this 80-pounder from River’s Inlet, BC… I can only imagine how ridiculously massive the fillets off a fish like this are! Kudos to the netter too… I’m thinking I’d have a sudden case of the shakes when this bad dude came to the surface!
85-Pound June Hog
Here’s another one from the “wish I had a time machine jet sled” files… An 85-pound Columbia River June Hog caught in 1925 at Astoria by Tony Canessa. Man, those fish were soon awesome!
Okay steelhead junkies, hang onto your hats… here are 10 massive steelhead that will make your heads spin!
Nick English with his massive, jaw-dropping and and well-publicized 37-pound beast caught on the Kispiox River in British Columbia.
Andrew Fairclouth, right, with guide Gill McKean, hooked “Moby” on a fly in BC’s Kitimat River. While Moby was not weighed prior to release, he was very likely in the mid 30’s. Using Sturdy’s Weight Formula (length x girth squared x .00133), which was developed for Dean River steelhead, you get an amazing 35.8 pounds. The Skeena/Kispiox Formula (length x girth squared divided by 775) designed to estimate the weight of the extra girthy fish those drainages are prone to produce, gives you 34.8 pounds.
In either case, Fairclouth’s steelhead would eclipse the fish long accepted as the world fly rod record of 33 pounds, set by Karl Mauser in 1963. Read the incredible story of “Moby” HERE.
The current IGFA All-Tackle World Record Steelhead was caught while salmon trolling in the salt!
Chuck Etwart caught his 36-pound steelhead onOctober 5, 1954 in the Kispiox River.
This massive dark buck was caught and released by Jeff Wissing (left) on the upper Quinault River with guide George Rose (right) in 2004. It measured 46 inches, with a 24 inch girth and weighed approx. 35 pounds!
On October 8, 1962, Karl Massuer listened to his beloved San Francisco Giants defeat the New York Yankees in Game 4 of the World Series on the radio and then went out and caught this 33-pound World Record Fly-Caught steelhead on the Kispiox River. A pretty dang good day!
By the way, the starting pitchers that game were Juan Marichal and Whitey Ford, respectively… neither of whom got a decision. The winning pitcher that game? None other than Don Larsen…who had thrown the only Perfect Game in World Series history as a member of the Yankees on October 8, 1956!
All I know about this leviathan is that it measured 44 inches by 24 inches, which using the steelhead weight formula, comes out at 32 freaking pounds! WOW!
Peter Harrison of Port Hadlock, WA shows off the enormous 44-inch, 29.5-pound wild steelhead buck he caught in Washington’s Hoh River on a spey rod. The mammoth steelie created quite a fuss in angling circles for a couple reasons… First off, it’s huge (duh!). It was weighed almost 24 hours after it was caught, so it was most likely a 30 plus pounder alive. Secondly it was a wild fish that was killed…
Read more about it HERE.
This obese chunkier of a steelhead got released by a client of guide Gill McKean of West Coast Fishing Adventures (left)while fishing a yarn ball under a float in BC’s Kitimat River. Estimated weight: 30 pounds!
On October 1st, 1985, Clay Carter beached an enormous steelhead at lower Patch on the Kispiox River in BC. He quickly measured the fish and let it go (So awesome!). Using length and girth measurements, the fish was estimated to weigh 37 pounds!
A fiberglass replica of Clay’s prize catch is on display just inside the Pioneer Saloon dining room. in Ketchum. A photo of the memorable moment hangs just outside the grill. Clay’s close friends and the Pioneer Saloon are proud to keep alive the memory of this gracious sportsman.