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 massive kings that will make you weak in the knees…
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 75 to 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!
Wolfgang Voelker, owner/operator of Kermode Bear Fishing Lodge in Terrace, BC writes:
Mrs. Ingrid Oeder, her husband Bernhard and their daughter arrived at Terrace Airport on August 6, 2001.
We went out fishing by boat the very next day. Fortunately, John Wright, the Kermode Bear Lodge Assistant Guide, joined us that day. We cast anchor right across the mouth of the Lakelse River. Suddenly, around 11 a.m., there was action on Ingrid’s rod. Bernhard hooked the fish and handed the rod back to her. Initially, there was no reaction on the other end of the line for about 10-15 seconds. All of a sudden, like an explosion, the fish headed toward the main current of the Skeena River.
At this point, I realized that this must be a really big one. We were lucky having John with us since we have been well-coordinated team for years. John released the anchor chain and started the boat engine. Now we’re prepared for the fight. I advised Ingrid to hold the rod up and to keep the line tight. In spite of her excitement she did everything right. We drifted downstream while Bernhard was operating the video camera. I would guess that we were fighting about 30 to 40 minutes with the fish, of course, Ingrid had to do most part of it. At last, the fish showed the first signs of tiredness and therefore the escape attempts lessened. Then it was my turn. After Ingrid finally managed to get the fish alongside the boat, I was able to net it. John and I lifted the salmon into the boat. Ingrid, meanwhile completely exhausted could not believe her luck. We drove back at full speed, since we did not want to set the fish back in the torrential current. I explained to Ingrid that we usually release all “the really big ones” to preserve the gene pool. She and her husband agreed to it without hesitation.
At this point, I want to thank them again for their understanding.
We took the measurements (136 cm x 98 cm) of the Salmon two times because could not believe it the first time. John and I put the giant back into the river approximately 10 minutes later, it swam into the deep water under its own steam.
There was a devout silence on the boat for a few seconds.
In the afternoon Bernhard caught his own smaller Chinook. This one, however, we took with us. Certainly, we will never forget this fishing day on the Skeena River.
The monster fish with a length of 53.5 inches and a girth of 38.5 using a formula (endorsed by FOC) of Length x Girth squared divided by 800 would weigh 99.125-pounds… clearly the largest Chinook (Kings as the Americans refer to them) ever landed. Along with witnesses a video was taken and a photograph made from the video.
10 Mind Blowing Giant Steelhead
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.
For more info, check out my steelhead techniques
It was posted on Fly Water Travel with minimal details…but you can read more there.
As far as a hoax goes…Who knows? From all my famous April Fool’s articles over the years, I know a thing or two about Photoshop and this looks legit. However, I’ve only had a chance to look at it on my phone and not a large computer monitor.
She appears to be struggling to hold the fish, which would be accurate but her grip on the caudal peduncle looks a little “fishy.” Unless the fish was dead, it would really, really hard to hold such a beast without loosing your grip.
I’m not saying this thing is faked. I fact, I hope it’s not.
What do you guys think??
Southern Oregon’s Umpqua River pumped out this ridiculous steelhead Monday, Jan. 14 for some buddies of Chuck Gross, El Presidente of Pavati Marine.
Chucky said that the beast measured a massive 42.5 inches but the guys didn’t get a girth, so estimating the weight is a crapshoot (it was released). However, it’s safe to say that it’s no-doubter mid 20’s…and if you told me it was close to 30 pounds, I wouldn’t disagree.
Apparently, the guy who hooked it handed Moby off to his less experienced buddy before realizing how big the fish was!
What an amazing creature! I just wish they got a better photo (sans towel).