A family outing to go ice fishing at Madge Lake in the Duck Mountain Provincial Park may have resulted in a record-breaking catch.
Kelly Salahub, her husband Craig and son Carter were on the ice on March 22, when Carter spotted a “huuuuge fish” down his fishing hole, “But it swam away,” he said.
“About a half hour later, Craig gasped,” said Kelly. “I looked down my hole, jigged once and it hit my hook. I set the hook and the battle began.
“After 30 minutes of fighting the fish I got it to the hole. Craig hooked it with the gaff and helped pull it up the hole and onto the ice. It is the biggest Northern Pike I have ever caught,” she said.
The fish weighed in at 31 pounds nine ounces and is 48.5 inches in length.
Almost immediately, after posting the picture on social media, questions began to arise as to whether the fish might be a “record breaker” for Madge Lake.
On Monday morning, Ryan Bielecki, acting Duck Mountain Park manager, confirmed that in 2004 local Kamsack resident, the late Jay Fry, had pulled a 31 pound nine ounce Northern Pike from Madge Lake. The fish is on display at the Park administration office. The length of the fish had not been recorded on the plaque.
Another quick phone call by the Kamsack Times yielded the answer.
Jay Fry’s daughter, Kathy Fry, employed at the local McMunn and Yates Building Supplies, confirmed that her father did, indeed, pull a 31 pound nine ounce Northern Pike from Madge Lake on February 22, 2004. The fish was 47 inches long, and was awarded fifth place in the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation’s provincial fishing competition for that year.
Sixteen years later, his record may have been slightly edged out. The official results will be determined and reported at a later date.