Michigan has a new state record King Salmon caught by an angler. The King that was caught by Luis Martinez from Ortonville is certified at 47.86 pounds.

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Captain Chuck's II Inc.

If you need help gauging that kind of weight, stop at a big home improvement store and pick up a 50 lb bag of sand. Or do a weight stack of 45 pounds on an upper-body press at your local gym. It’s a lot for a freshwater salmon. The new record King tops a long-standing record of an angler caught King Salmon in Michigan of a little over 46 pounds going back to 1978.

To make the event even more special, Martinez just got his fishing license on Friday before heading out on a Lake Michigan charter trip with Icebreaker Charters out of the port of Ludington.

Captain Chuck's II Inc.

The official weigh-in happened at Captain Chuck’s sports shop in Ludington.
Jay Wesley is the Lake Michigan Basin Coordinator for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. He made the 140-mile drive from the Kalamazoo area to Ludington to see the fish first hand and help with the certification. He tells us he's still ecstatic about the fish.

“Yeah, it's just unbelievable. It's huge, it's much bigger than I thought it would look when I heard about the weight of it.”

Coming from a Michigan DNR Fisheries professional, that’s saying something. “I've never seen anything like it. I've seen one, maybe in the 40 range, but nothing this big.”

Captain Chuck's II Inc.

Wesley admits the chances of there being a lot of near 50 pound King Salmon in Lake Michigan are slim. It takes a near-perfect combination of time, food, and luck for one to hit that size. But lots of 30 pounds plus Kings have been taken by anglers both last year and so far this year. That speaks well to the chances of anglers in Lake Michigan through the fall finding lots more big bruisers out there. That will help the rebounding charter operations and private boat owners forget the damages caused by restrictions imposed due to the COVID-19 virus outbreak. Big fish can make those bad memories vanish in a heartbeat.

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