324Lb. Halibut

Kernhuntr

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Quiet fishing trip turns into big tussle
HALIBUT: Dad, son in small boat battle 324-pounder for 21/2 hours.


The Associated Press


(Published: June 20, 2002)
Kodiak -- When Geary Cooper and his son Aaron went fishing last week in Ugak Bay, they were looking for a quiet evening in the water on the east side of Kodiak Island.

What they got was a 21/2-hour struggle with a 324-pound halibut.

Cooper, 48, said he and his 13-year-old son were not set up to catch a big fish.

"We didn't have a gun or a harpoon," Cooper said. Kodiak charter boats typically carry a weapon to subdue a big fish, which can thrash about and damage a boat.

The two set off in a 17-foot inflatable Avon. Before long, they hooked the giant halibut, and the fight was on.

"It was quite a chore to get this thing in the boat," Cooper said. "We had to keep switching the pole back and forth."

When the halibut finally neared the surface and Cooper saw its size, he tried desperately to gain control.

"I had a small gaff," Cooper said. "I put the gaff in its mouth. It about ripped my arm off and threw the gaff down somewhere in the ocean."

Aaron and Cooper had a knife aboard, so whenever the fish surfaced, they would try to cut it. They had hooked the fish on a heavy halibut rod with 120-pound test line.

"It was good heavy line," Cooper said, which allowed them to hang on to the fish long enough to wear it out.

Finally, after 21/2 hours, they subdued the 7-foot-long halibut and dragged it into their boat.

Cooper, the maintenance manager at the Kodiak Launch Complex, moved to the island 18 months ago from Palmer. He said the family would eat some of the halibut, but would probably give most of it away.
 

Thonzberry

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Man talk about scary.....I'd love to see a pic of that thing inside the boat.
 

1SoCalHunter

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can you imagine the size of that flattie? I took a lot of space on that inflatable not to mention the weight factor.  On the other hand, I would have loved to give them a hand eating it :big-grin-aqua::big-grin-aqua:
 

marmot

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This is a 264# I caught a couple of years ago. Add 60 pounds and that's what a 324# looks like. It took an hour to boat him due to using a boat and gear designed for the job.

Wish we had released it, the 60 pounders taste better. I think they are not released due to the danger and because the usually swallow the hook and it damages their innards too bad for them to survive.

(Edited by marmot at 1:59 pm on June 24, 2002)
 

1SoCalHunter

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Marmot:
That's a nice flattie you caught there.  Where did you get it? Alaska? I have been wanting to go for a halibut fishing trip there for a while now, maybe one of this days...
 

marmot

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Yep, fished out of Homer Alaska, a Jewel of a place.
 

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