If you've ever fished for Muskie, you know why the call it the fish of 10,000 casts.

My first experience with this monster of a fish was twenty some years ago when my 3 year old daughter was fishing with her Kmart fishing rod off the end of our dock.

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I was helping her reel in a sunfish and when we just about had it out of the water, a huge Muskie rose out of the water and snapped that sunfish right off the line.

Until this point, I had never seen a Muskie around our place and I was bitten with the Muskie bug. I spent 4 summers trying to snag one of those before finally hooking one.  He let me reel it in about 20 feet and then started swimming back and forth until he was able to cut the line.

According to Twin Cities Pioneer Press, Nolan Sprengeler of Plymouth was out fishing Rock Reefs on Lake Mille Lacs around 9 PM last Monday and hooked himself what appears to be a record breaker. A 55 pound and 14.8 ounce Muskie, be exact.

The previous record, set back in 1957, was a 54-pound Muskie reeled in  on Lake Winnibigoshish. Sprengeler weighed his fish on a certified UPS scale but all potential record breakers need to be vetted by the Minnesota Department of Natural resources.

All required information seems to be in order. Witnesses, notarized signatures, weight via a certified scale and official determination of species are being checked by the DNR and a determination should be made sometime next week.

“I guess it doesn’t surprise me because I’ve seen reports of all these huge fish that have been caught,” said Tom Heinrich, the DNR’s fisheries area supervisor for Mille Lacs. “These are special fish.”

Freezing weather wasn't making it an easy fishing evening but things worked out. “That wasn’t really our original plan, but we figured we were already up there, so we might as well fish,” Sprengeler said, adding that the moon phase and upcoming moonrise — two factors researchers suspect might influence Muskie behavior — were favorable Monday evening. 

He added “It was horrible,” he chuckled. “You’re dealing with icy lines and icy line guides. But we always say when you fishing late fall and you’re fishing for fish this size, you’re either all-in or you’re nothing.

Congratulations Nolan Sprengeler. You'll have a fish story to tell for many years.

“It’s a very close-knit group of guys I fish with, and its a been a journey that we’ve all been on. It’s still unbelievable that it went down the way it did: Last outing of the season at basically the last hour, to have it happen like that. It’s a storybook ending.

“But right now, I’ll probably take a nap.”

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