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Thread: Bass Angler Boats 60-Inch Musky On Green Bay

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    Senior Member Steve Heiting's Avatar
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    Bass Angler Boats 60-Inch Musky On Green Bay

    A big, big fish ...


    By Musky Hunter Staff

    At first, Joe Gensini thought he was snagged. Once he realized he was hooked to a fish, it took him a while to comprehend how big it was. Now, two weeks later, the size of the musky he ended up catching is still sinking in.

    Gensini, of Hennepin, Illinois, caught and released a 60 3/4-inch musky while prefishing for a bass tournament on Green Bay May 9, after a battle that lasted an hour and ten minutes.

    “It was really a neat fish, a giant fish. I’ve fished in Florida, California, and through the northwoods, and I’ve never before seen a fish of this size,” said Gensini, 39, of Hennepin, Illinois. “I’m not a musky hunter. I’m a tournament bass fisherman. I didn’t realize what I caught until after the fact.”

    Gensini was pre-fishing for the Cabela’s North American Bass Circuit tournament which was held May 12-13 on Green Bay with his partner, Paul Malone, a full-time fishing guide from Pleasant Valley, Iowa, when he hooked the musky. The two anglers had positioned their boat in about 10 feet of water in Little Sturgeon Bay and were casting to a drop-off that went from seven to 10 feet when the fish hit on his second cast of the morning at about 10 a.m.

    “I caught it on an eighth-ounce homemade black hair jig ... just a plain old black hair jig,” Gensini said. “My goal was to fish the hair jig real slow. I cast it out, let it fall, and I felt just a ‘tink.’ I set the hook and when it didn’t move I thought I had a snag. I kind of went to pick up again and then I could feel I had a fish.

    “At first I thought I had a big smallmouth. She really didn’t know she was hooked. Once she realized she was hooked she came out toward deeper water and I could finally see her in the clear water. I still didn’t realize how big it was.

    “I already had some time invested so I told my partner I was going to try to catch this fish. We ended up chasing it around with the trolling motor for an hour and 10 minutes.”

    Gensini and Malone took turns with the rod during the fight. “Paul and I both fish a lot of bass tournaments and it’s rare we get to fish together. Halfway through the fight I handed the rod off to him so I could tie up my lines and prepare myself for the day of prefishing. We really landed it as a team effort. I’d run the trolling motor and he’d dance around the boat, then we’d switch and he’d run the trolling motor while I danced around the boat,” Gensini said.

    Gensini’s rig included 8-pound test PowerPro high-visibility green braided line that had been spooled for him that morning at Howie’s Tackle in nearby Sturgeon Bay. The braid was tied to an 8-pound test fluorocarbon leader, and fished off a Shimano reel and 6-foot-9 medium-heavy Fitzgerald spinning rod.

    Finally, the anglers brought the musky to the boat. “We didn’t have a net big enough for it, so we got the head into the net and I then body-hugged the fish and got it into the boat. We then proceeded to take a video of getting the fish unhooked. It was hooked right in the corner of the mouth,” Gensini said.

    Anglers in another boat who had watched the fight had a tape measure and digital scale, and let the anglers borrow it to record the details. Gensini said the musky had a 28 1/4-inch girth, and weighed 40.1 pounds on the scale before they released it. “We also marked the length of the fish on a rod. I just wanted to get a feel for how big the fish was. I even pulled the drawstring out of my sweatshirt to girth it, and cut it off at the girth,” Gensini said.

    Gensini said the best photo of the fish is the one pictured here of Malone, and said the entire fish was not included in photos of himself. They took video of the release and hope to pull better still images from it.

    While he knew he had a big musky, Gensini, who owns Gensini Excavating and is a part-owner of the fishing jersey company Rayjus, didn’t know how significant a 60-incher is until he talked with his friend, Mike Novak of Hinsdale, Illinois. Longtime Musky Hunter readers may recall Novak’s catch of a 55-inch, 46-pound 10-ounce musky in 1994 which won the Vilas County Musky Marathon that year, or they may have seen him on the “Fishing With Joe Bucher” TV show.

    Novak was stunned. “I’m not looking for anything nor do I want anything from this fish. I just caught a big musky, and I’m telling Mike about it and he says, ‘Oh, my God. Do you realize what you’ve got?’,” Gensini laughed.

    Gensini, who says he has caught and released a 14-pound largemouth bass and an 8-pound smallmouth bass without having replicas made, said he intends to have a replica made of his big musky.

    And how did Gensini and Malone do in the bass tourney? They ended up 26th.

    http://www.muskyhunter.com/musky-mat...sky-green-bay/
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    Steve Heiting

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    WOW. Dat be some fish. m

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    Great story to go with a big fish CPR!

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    Senior Member Steve Heiting's Avatar
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    It's been an interesting week since I interviewed Mr. Gensini and wrote the above article. Since 60" is a lofty number, I knew everything about the catch and story would be scrutinized. Amazingly, Facebook says the article "reached" nearly 96,000 people. I've monitored the comments made on social media and elsewhere, and feel encouraged by many and saddened by some.

    The fish is truly giant. Its length is not being distorted by the camera; please note how Mr. Malone's forearm is across his body.

    I fully understand how the LxGxG/800 info doesn't add up, but my job in writing the article was to report Mr. Gensini's account of the catch, nothing more. The job of a reporter is to report the facts as best he/she can determine them, and not to speculate or editorialize.

    Mr. Gensini's musky looks to be of normal proportions. Its thickest point appears to be slightly in front of the pelvic fins. Given that, what is a "normal" girth for a 60" musky? I know that right behind the head of a 50" of average proportions, the girth will be around 19.5-20" simply because the fish is so big. We start thinking a 50" musky with a 22" girth is nicely built, and truly heavy fish are around 24" in girth. A 28" girth on a 50" fish is obese. Applying these standards to a fish that is 20% longer than a 50" musky could be enough to skew our expectations.

    So, again, what is the girth of a "nicely built" 60" musky? I don't know because I've never held one, and only a handful ever have.

    That all said, we still have the discrepancies in the weight formula. Before I even wrote the article, I knew the numbers wouldn't "add up," so I punched them into the Muskie Weight Calculator app on my phone. The various weight formulas say the fish should be in the high 50/low 60 pound range. Still, Mr. Gensini told me the scale read 40.1 pounds, and I confirmed this with him to make sure I heard correctly. My best guess is the digital scale used to weigh the fish is inaccurate, which is not hard for me to believe because the only digital scale I've ever had was "stiff" too.

    Finally, Musky Hunter's use of a photo of a vertically-held fish was even questioned. Normally it's against our policy to use such photos, but it was the best photo available that showed this musky in its entirety. (Imagine the scrutiny had we used a pic of the fish being held horizontally, but its tail was cropped off.) In this case, the newsworthiness of a giant musky superseded the policy. We would have much preferred to use a pic of the fish being held horizontally IF it showed the entire fish, but it wasn't available.
    Steve Heiting

    www.steveheiting.com

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    I caught a 53 inch muskie with Mr. Johnson guiding, and he estimated her weight at about 40 pounds. He's seen his share of big muskies. It was smaller than this fish. Nice fish!

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    The bass angler did everything within his knowledge and responsibility. Congrats to the angler.

  7. #7
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    This caught my eye as I just returned from Rhinelaner where I caught a musky on a 1/8 black hair jig fishing for smallies. The difference is it was about 30".
    The formula put it at 7 pounds.

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