On January 22, an angler named Brad Lila hooked into an enormous northern pike whereas ice fishing on central Minnesota’s Millie Lacs Lake. When he lastly introduced the behemoth via the ice, it taped out at a formidable 46.25 inches with a 23-inch girth. Earlier this week, the Minnesota Division of Pure Assets (MDNR) licensed Lila’s catch as a tie for the general catch-and-release state report.

“I set the hook as the road was shortly peeling out,” Lila later informed MDNR officers. “Instantly, I knew it was a really giant fish as a result of it peeled out drag and there was no stopping it. After about 10 minutes of preventing the fish, I knew that it would take greater than me to land it.”

That’s when Lila determined to hunt assist. He waved his arms and started to holler. Finally, two close by anglers got here to his support, the MDNR acknowledged in a current press launch. As a result of the pike was so massive, and a lot slush had collected beneath the exhausting ice, Lila and his fellow anglers struggled to get the fish’s head turned towards the opening.

“Each time she would get close to, a couple of inches of slush would come up, and we couldn’t see down the opening,” Lila mentioned. “An extra problem was that my braided line would groove the underside of the ice and when my knot connecting the fluorocarbon chief would meet the ice backside, it could get caught. I’d must put my rod down into the opening to liberate my line after which my line guides would freeze.”

This went on for a stable half-hour, Lila mentioned, earlier than he managed to get the fish out of the ice and onto a measuring board. He recorded the pike’s size, posed for a photograph, and launched it again into the frigid waters of Milie Lacs Lake. In accordance with MDNR, the pike was in all probability a feminine en path to spawn.

Associated: Angler Catches Monster 222-Pound Catfish Regardless of Freezing Temps

“It was so satisfying seeing her swim away,” Lila mentioned. “I’m very appreciative of the state of Minnesota for supporting a catch-and-release [record fish] program. It’s nice to know that she’s on the market passing alongside these unimaginable genes and that another person might have an opportunity of touchdown her sometime.”  

The MDNR maintains catch-and-release information for 4 separate species: Muskellunge, northern pike, lake sturgeon, and flathead catfish. The brand new information program solely accounts for a fish’s total size. The opposite catch-and-release size report for northern pike—which additionally measured 46.25 inches—was caught by Brecken Kobylecky of Geneva, Illinois on Basswood Lake in June of 2021.

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