Angler shatters record for tiger trout after trying to release it

·1 min read

A fisherman who caught a huge tiger trout had tried to release it thinking it could grow to become a state record only to discover it was already of record size.

While fishing at Loon Lake 30 miles north of Spokane, Wash., Caylun Peterson landed a 24.49-pound tiger trout that eclipsed the previous record by six pounds, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife announced Thursday.

Peterson, fishing early in the morning to avoid triple-digit heat on June 26, used a whole nightcrawler to entice the tiger trout into biting, and he knew it was a good fish right away.

“I hooked into that thing and he pulled drag for quite a while before it stopped,” Peterson said.

Once he landed the fish, he attempted to release it, but the fish was unable to swim away on its own.

“Honestly, I was ecstatic, but tried to let it go because I was thinking in my head that if this thing is this big now, in a year it might be a record,” Peterson said, laughing. “Well, it turned out it was a record anyway.”

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His mother and a neighbor had quickly informed him that the Washington record for tiger trout was 18 pounds.

“I said, ‘You gotta be kidding me; I know this thing is over 18 pounds,’” he said.

Sure enough, it was, and the WDFW certified the fish as a state record.

The old record was an 18.49-pounder caught by Kelly Flaherty at Bonaparte Lake in Okanogan County on May 6, 2015.

Peterson is having the record tiger trout mounted.

Photo courtesy of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.

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