|Here's the story!
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Story by Bill Hilts Jr.
Rob Wilson of Tallmadge, Ohio was trolling out of Olcott, NY on
August 14, 2004 when the fish of a lifetime hit his Pirate 55 spoon – a
31 pound, three ounce steelhead trout that stretched the tape to 39 inches
long. The girth of the fish was 26 inches. The fish is now the new state
record, shattering the previous mark set by Gerald Szmania by five pounds,
four ounces! Szamania caught his 26 pound, 15 ounce fish while trolling
off Point Breeze on May 22, 1985.
’s prize catch is an exclamation point on how good the fishing has been
this year on
. Salmon fishing is the best it’s been in 15 years and the trout fishing
– well, no one’s really been fishing for trout, the salmon has been
the good. In the meantime, fish like
’s continue to swim out in the lake looking for someone to catch them
– just in time for the Lake Ontario Counties Trout and Salmon Derby set
for August 20 thru September 6.
was fishing 12 to 14 miles out of Olcott with his father, Robert and Tom
around 7:30 a.m. when the behemoth hit their Pirate 55 watermelon with
gold fleck spoon offering. It immediately stripped off about 300 yards of
line from their Daiwa 47LC and tried to jump free. This was not a day that
the fish would win, however. Twenty minutes later, they netted the trophy
fish and put it in their cooler – thinking it was a salmon. After they
caught a couple more fish, they inspected their big catch more closely and
realized that it was a steelhead. They still didn’t understand what they
After weighing the fish in The Slippery Sinker in Olcott, the first
weight that registered was 31 pounds, four ounces. It had lost weight from
the initial hand scale Rob had used, with 31 pounds, seven ounces the
first weight – taken six hours earlier when they were on the boat. When
it was recorded as an official weight with a witness from DEC, the fish
weighed 31 pounds 3 ounces. When they were told it wasn’t a record, the
fish almost made it to the fish cleaning table. Instead, Capt.Bob Cinelli
of Olcott intercepted them and the fish was rescued before it found its
way into a baggie.
What an excellent way to lead into the Fall LOC Derby. The only
thing that could have been better was if the fish was actually caught by a
registered angler in the derby! Last year’s winner, Mike Loya of
, set the pace with a 33 pound king, also caught out of Olcott, to win the
check for $20,000. First place in each of the specie categories
(steelhead, lake trout, brown trout and salmon) will be worth $2,500.
For more information on the LOC Derby, call toll-free at (888)
REEL-2-IN or visit their website at www.loc.org.