Local angler Kelly Joe Hall has hauled in another world-record fish – a walleye from Puett Reservoir.
The 3-pound, 13-ounce walleye caught April 15 is the women’s record-holder for the 6-pound line class. The previous record was 2 pounds, 9 ounces.
Hall caught it on the third cast from the shore using a Rapala XR 10 lure “that mimics a baby fish.”
The fish was weighed and the process video taped to the standards of the International Game and Fish Association, which certified the record.
This is Hall’s third record fish, but one that could soon be beaten.
In July, she caught two rainbow trout at Groundhog Reservoir, one in the 2-pound line class and the other in the 4-pound line class. The 2-pound line class fish weighed in at 1 pound, 12 ounces, and the 4-pound line record was a whopping 4-pound, 5-ounce trout.
For the walleye record, she and friend Joe Crosby were at Puett Reservoir when they saw the walleye moving in shallower water, a tad unusual. They decided to return at sunset when fish feed and were successful.
“In the day, walleye tend to go deep, then move to the shore in the evening,” Hall said.
The catch was given to some friends for dinner.
“Walleye are really good to eat and have a very clean flavor,” she said. “Other lake fish can have a muddy, fishy flavor, but not walleye. They make delicious fish tacos.”
Fish behavior is part of the challenge and fun of fishing, Hall said, like whether they are a bottom feeder or top feeder, and what their preferred prey are.
Hall and Crosby are generous with their knowledge and welcome people to ask them about their tackle and tactics.
They bring extra gear to share with kids or anyone interested.
“We love fishing and want to pass it on,” Hall said. “I encourage the ladies that when you are fishing with your guy, you may as well go for a record.”
The competition is fun as well. Another woman has submitted a trout catch that could beat one of Hall’s records, so “now I’ve got a challenger. That’s motivating. I’ve got to catch a bigger one.”
One of their tips is to buy specially ordered Ande lines that have been pretested for specific weights. Other lines can be off and will disqualify submissions for records.
Hall’s next goal is to travel to Bluewater Lake, New Mexico, to catch a record-breaking tiger muskie, a cross between a pike and a muskie.