Isn't he cute?
Before heading out on our adventure.Trying to reel in the beast...Aaron looks a little worried.Not going to give up yet.Both the boys lifting it out of the water.It was HUGE....seriously almost as tall as me. You can tell I'm struggling by the way my knees and back are bent. I couldn't stand up straight with it because it was too heavy.
Aaron's brother, Brian with the same fish. He's the one who hooked it!
Dating a country boy who loves to hunt and fish has its exciting moments. When I first started dating Aaron, I enjoyed going fishing with him, mainly because it meant spending time with him. I really never actually picked up a pole, but I went along for the ride and either layed out, read a book, or took pictures. It was fun for me, but I didn't have the patience to sit there and try to catch a fish. I've only caught one fish my entire life and it was teeny tiny! Yesterday, we went with a bunch of Aaron's friends and his brothers to Fort Gibson Dam to fish for Spoonbill/Paddle fish. I've never gone fishing for these guys, but I knew they were big and would probably pull me in the water if I caught one. The poles you use are huge and you have to pull the pole and reel in quick because you are trying to "snag" these fish. Aaron was pretty sure I wouldn't be able to cast and reel the big pole, but I wanted to try anyway. Yep, he was right......I tried and ended up breaking the line because I got caught up on something. The boys decided they would hook the fish and then I could reel it in. Aaron's brother, Brian hooked one and yelled for me to come reel it in. He thought it was a fairly small one and that I would be able to handle it. Boy, was he wrong. I'm pretty sure I couldn't even turn the reel because the line was so tight and the fish was so heavy. I was trying to hold the pole up with one hand and reel with the other and it was SO hard. I had to put the pole between my legs so I had something to ground me so the pole didn't get pulled into the water, but when this huge fish is almost lifting me off the ground it was a wee bit painful to have in between my legs. I tried really hard to get the fish reeled in, but after a few minutes of trying, I gave up. Aaron grabbed the pole from me and did the rest of the work. It made me feel better once he grabbed it because he was like, "whoa, this isn't a little one. It's a BIG one." He even struggled for a while to get it reeled in. Once we got it to the side, it took both him and his brother to lift it out of the water. They think it weighed about 50-55lbs. Apparently, Blake Shelton holds the Oklahoma state record for the largest spoonbill, weighing in at 40lbs. We took pictures with the fish and threw it back in. Wish we would have taken it in somewhere so we could have beat his record. That would have been awesome! I was planning on just crouching down beside the fish and taking a picture with it, but they insisted that I pick it up. By the way, you have to put your hands in through the gills and up through the mouth. All I could feel was the fish's jaw pressing on my arms. It felt like a baby biting you without teeth. Really creepy, weird feeling. Although I didn't actually catch the fish, I was proud of myself for even touching it. Since all three of us had some part involved in catching the fish, I say "we" caught it and it was a group effort. Wish I could take all the credit, but I'm not a beast and there's no way I could have caught and reeled that thing on my own. We were fishing from about 3pm until 9pm and I never once got bored (that's saying something). I will definitely be going Spoonbill fishing again. I had a blast!