Don't be too sure about your idiot award. I'm also in the competition - lost my Sage rod at Pass last weekend, and it was only over an 18" rainbow. Exact same scenario too: released the fish and looked over just in time to see the rod tip disappear.
(Aspiring salvage divers can check the classifieds under "free sage rod" for GPS coordinates.)
Anyway, I feel a little better knowing I'm not the only one. And congrats on the hurkin' brown!
Great looking fish ! i fish out of drift boats and always have a regular small rod with a wobbler for a jig in case i lose a rod over board . it happened once to me and ever since then i always have something i can jig a lost rod up with . in a float tube you could buy a pocket fisherman for about 10 bucks and have it with you at all times ! it almost happened last summer when i wasnt looking at my indi and was helping my friend with his fish , when i looked back line was running out , i just barely got to my rod before it yanked it into the lake , luckily i had stripped out a bunch of line between reel and first eye just in case i did hook a fish in that brief moment . i agree with getting a diver !
Nice fish FF. Glad that your hunch was right on the big boys in that lake. Like the others have said, too bad about the rig on the bottom. I have yet to lose a rod overboard but I suppose it will happen one of these days.
Good golly what a fish! Congratulations Tim, looks like your research and recon paid off! Quite the finale for the ol' Echo rod too. My thoughts are it gave up the last of its mojo for that brown and decided retirement was in order.
I looked at that fish real hard and it doesn't look like any browns that I have ever seen. There are no halo's around any of the spots on the fish and where I'm from the fish that get that big have a brown/yellow tinge to them.
I could be wrong as I sometimes are. But I not so sure this time.
With guided trips on the Yak going for $450 (plus tip), gas at $4/gallon, a trip to New Zealand costing $$$, your loss is small in the whole scheme of things, but it still sucks! I'm glad for the fish, which more than made up for it! Rick