Sometimes a fish is more than a fish. This remarkable story came to me from a good friend who has taken up guiding this year. Read on and when you get to the end, take a moment to send some positive energy Bill’s way and remember to enjoy every moment.
« Being a guide can be rewarding. Bill was my guest for two days. He has inoperable cancer so he’s been travelling the world to catch fish on his « Bucket List ».
His wish was to catch his first Muskie and to catch a 50 inch fish. He had never caught a Muskie before and catching (and releasing) a Muskie was now at the top of his « Bucket List ». That’s a tall order for any guide.
The first day he worked very hard, casting big blades all day. This can be very tiring. We caught Pike but no Muskie. As it got dark we set up a trolling run so he could take a break and sure enough, he the reel went off and he caught and released his first Muskie, a nice 38″ fish. He finished the first day a happy man.
Day two, we now needed to find a big fish to fulfil the second part of his wish.
Anyone that fishes for Muskies knows that it’s not so easy to find and catch them and the really big ones are very elusive. This is where being a guide helps. When you are on the water a lot, you see patterns and seasonal activity that enhances your knowledge.
I really wanted to get him connected with a giant so we worked hard as the day progressed. I knew he was tired and sore after two days of casting but I encouraged him to keep going. He did.
As soon as his cast hit the water there was a big swirl and his rod bent over double as he set the hook. I could see that it was a big one. As he tried to bring it to the boat the fish had other ideas and went the other way. When it came around, I could see that if we could get it close enough to net, he would have his 50 incher. As the fish came into the net we could also see how fat she was. Nice fish.
I brought it into the boat for him. We did a quick measurement. 50.5 inches long by 22 inch girth. He couldn’t lift this big fish so we put on his lap for a quick photo. Back in the water after that and we were left with that great feeling of « mission accomplished ». He smiled and said, « I’m done! Take me back now. I’ve caught my fish of a lifetime. »
There’s no better feeling as a guide than helping someone fulfill their wishes. »