Freshwater Pike-Zilla (pic)
After a few crazy work days in a row, I had plans of hitting the salt last night, but when the alarm went off at 2 AM, I shut it off and slept until 7. I hit the Passaic and was not expecting much with the stained water and water levels higher than I prefer.
WOW, was I wrong! I landed at least 6 pike with a few drops at the kayak and a few strikes and misses, with a few bass just to keep things active.
Then I hit an area that usually produces a fish or two. On my first cast I had a solid follow to the kayak with a smaller fish, but he never committed on the spinner bait. After getting pushed around by the current and trying to stay in the zone, I circled around and made a cast and got slammed by a huge pike!
It was a solid hookup and this fish towed me around in circles for what seemed like 10 minutes. At least 5 great runs across the river, and he was heading straight for some logs sticking up in the river. Of course, my line gets tangled around one and I thought for sure the fish would get off or the line would break. I managed to free the line and the fish was off again.
After thinking that he was "almost done", I started to paddle to shore with one hand and try to stay out of the current for a few pictures.
I may have caught one or two longer pike in the river, but this one was by far the heaviest pike that I have landed. I measured the fish against my paddle and it was just at 44 inches. It was a two hand job just to lift it out of the water.
Here are a few pictures before the fish drenched me after the release.