Thoughts on killing the record steelhead, fallout and ruminations:

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Zen Piscator, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. SpeySpaz

    SpeySpaz still an authority on nothing

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    you know, this thread almost took a productive turn there for a second...

    take your heat, write to your congressional representatives in both houses and to the members of the natural resources committee.
    oppose 5127 and its house sister bill
    support 2266, which will require live-fish release and selective gear for everyone including commercials, and require ESA fish to be actually protected.

    take the heat in your belly and put it to use, guys! The fish need you more. English Pete is who he is and whatever's done is done.
     
  2. arrowhead

    arrowhead Guest

    fgsdfgsdfgsdfgsd
     
  3. Buck

    Buck "Ride'n Dirty."

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    So this is an article that I found from the guy who caught the fish. Pete

    From: Peter
    >Sent: Tue, 24 Feb 2009 16:05:34 -0800
    >To: Peter
    >Subject: Big Fish

    > Dear Friends and Fellow Fishermen,
    >
    > As some of you may already have heard, last week, on Friday, 20 February I was out fishing on the Hoh River with Shirley. It was a wonderfully clear day, the temperature a little below freezing and a herd of elk were grazing in a Riverside pasture. The river was running exceptionally low and clear and we were swinging flies through some attractive water. I was using my 15-foot Spey rod, Shirley was using her eight-weight, single-handed rod.
    >
    > There had been little action but I had seen one good-sized fish roll a little ahead of me and, for a brief few seconds, I had hooked into what appeared to be a 12-pound or 15-pound fish. At around 2 PM I was swinging my fly through some good-looking water and something that I can only describe as a lightning bolt hit my whole body. Suddenly my Ross reel was screaming at a decibel level usually reserved for Rolling Stone concerts. In a couple of heartbeats 200 yards of line had disappeared from my reel as the fish headed for Alaska. I told myself not to panic, but my whole body was shaking; I knew that if I could survive the first round I would at least have some chance of getting the fish to the bank. For the next 30 minutes I battled the fish, standing at times chest deep in the middle of the river on a submerged bar.
    >
    > At this point I had not seen the fish, but eventually I managed to make it back to the river bank and was able to stand on dry ground. At that time the fish exploded into the air, executing three cartwheels. I couldn’t believe my eyes, the fish was almost 4 feet in length. I had never seen a steelhead like it. After 45 minutes of battling the fish I managed to beach it gently. My intention was to let it go, having first measured the fish, but it was bleeding quite heavily from the gills. As it seemed likely not survive the ordeal, and because it was the fish of a lifetime, I decided to take the fish. In 10 years of fishing Washington state rivers this is the first fish I have ever taken, of any kind, from a river.
    >
    > At this point, several boats appeared, heading down river. In one of the boats was my good friend and mentor, Jim Kerr; with him in his boat was a state biologist, who measured the fish and took some fish scales. A couple of other boats arrived and had spring scales with them, and we weighed the fish. One set of scales said 31 pounds and the other said 32 pounds. The fish was dragged for about a mile through the forest to our parked car and then taken to Olympic Sporting Goods in Forks. We weighed the fish on their scales and it registered 31-1/2 pounds.
    >
    > As many of you already know, there is a formula for estimating the weight of a fish. In essence you square the girth of the fish and then multiply that by its length and divide by 800.. My fish was 44 inches in length with a girth of 23-1/2 inches. That would result in a fish weighing 30.38 pounds. It was not until the following day, 23 hours after the fish had been caught, that I managed to get the fish to a State-accredited set of scales, at Key City Fish Company in Port Townsend. The fish had obviously lost a little weight due to loss of fluids and bleeding, but it still weighed 29.5 pounds at that point.
    >
    > I have subsequently contacted the International Game Fish Association to check on records for fly-caught steelhead. It turns out that the existing world record for 8 kg tippet is a 28-pound fish caught by Chuck Stephens on the Skeena River on 20 October 1985, 24 years ago. I am now in the process of submitting my fish of last week as the new world record. On further research it also appears that this would also be [one of the largest steelhead to have been caught on a fly] rod for all tippet classes.
    >
    > Hopefully you all enjoyed the story and the pictures. Many people got to see the fish before I dropped it off at a local taxidermist. One state biologist confided in me that he was 62 years old and had personally caught over 5000 steelhead and that this was the biggest steelhead he had ever seen in his life. Another chap simply shook me by the hand, looked me in the eye and said, “This isn’t the fish of a lifetime, it’s the fish of a thousand lifetimes.”
    >
    > I guess English Pete got lucky.
    >
    > Best regards
    >
    > Peter


    If someone already posted this my apologies.
    Frank.
     
  4. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    Just to beat the dead horse a while longer . . .

    English Pete has taken quite a beating for killing his wild Hoh steelhead. It turns out Pete deserves all the heat he's getting, and then some. Pete has compromised his own integrity, assuming he used to have any. He says in his email that he intended to release the fish, but that it was bleeding quite heavily from its gills. English Pete is a liar. There were witnesses who saw him land this steelhead. A well known and respected OP guide saw Pete land the steelhead. It was not hooked in a lethal area, nor was it bleeding. It didn't begin bleeding heavily until Pete hit the steelhead on the head with a rock, according to the eye witness. I don't know Pete, but I know several friends who know the guide quite well. I'm believing the guide's story, not English Pete's.

    There's not a lot of reason to hate Pete for killing his fish, as the law permits him to do it. However, if anyone wants to hate or harange Pete for being a liar about why he killed his fish, please understand that Pete has brought it on himself and likely deserves whatever he gets.

    And if the story about English Pete gets more anglers to become involved in steelhead conservation, I think this whole ugly episode will have been worth it.

    Sg
     

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