When it comes to the greatest battles in fishing history, it is the length of the battles that surprises us all. When a fisherman wants to submit for a world-record consideration, they must fill out the International Game Fish Association’s record form application, which has a blank space for “fighting time”.
The records that we are about to show you were approved by the IGFA to prove that the fish were captured without breaking any angling rules.
Thane Morgan - The Big Tarpon
In this instance, it wasn’t angler Thane Morgan who decided how the battle would go down, but the fish. He probably didn’t expect to fight this Tarpon for eighteen hours, which was especially silly two years later when he hooked and caught a 119-pounder in a matter of minutes.
It was 4 PM on a regular Florida Bay afternoon when Thane Morgan went out with a four-pound line, where he would hook an 88-pound Tarpon. That Tarpon would become the world-record catch after a very long struggle. They had hit it around 12 times throughout the course of the night, though it became a bit of an immovable object on the four-pound tippet.
Eventually, Morgan was able to subdue the fish the next day around noon, just about 15 miles from where he originally hooked it.
Stewart Campbell - The Massive Bigeye
In 1986, angler Stewart Campbell and his guide, Bark Garnsey, sailed out on the Ivory Coast of Africa in hopes of catching a blue marlin. They had borrowed a man’s boat that wasn’t totally fit for pitch-baiting, so they had to set up small lures on the outriggers.
While looking to catch a marlin, they ended up catching a bigeye. Unfortunately, the fish wishboned the two anglers, as well as the owner of the boat. Stewart had to transition to another stranger’s boat just to follow the fish, which was a wild transition.
In seven hours of fighting, they ended up catching a 240-pound bigeye for a new world record.
Dave Kahlenberg - The Seven-Hour Shark
Dave Kahlenberg of New Zealand was out one night on his boat when he spotted two big bronze whale sharks lurking in the water. With his 8-pound line mono hooked to a Tiagra 12, he followed the sharks in hopes to break the class record.
In all luck, the shark took his line, though made a 100-yard dash to where the arduous battle began. After seven hours in the water and about 12 miles from the initial hooking point, Kahlenberg was finally able to get the shark onto the boat’s platform, which weighed over 400 pounds.
Feeling Tired Yet?
Breaking a world record for catching a large fish is one thing, though fighting a record-breaking fish for many hours is another. These men are some of the greatest anglers in the game with stamina beyond belief.
Ready to take on the challenge?
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