Can you imagine pulling this huge gator to the boat with a hand line?
According to the St. Augustine Record, that is exactly what Florida anglers Keith Kelley and Kelly Sziy, did on Sunday October 17.
The huge gator weighed 765 pounds and measured 13 and a half feet long.
To catch the gator, Kelley and Sziy attached a two and a half inch by half inch wooden dowel to an offshore fishing reel. They baited the setup by attaching the peg to a cow lung. Kelley said:
This way if the gator breaks the line, the peg won’t hurt him. But once he takes the bait, the cow lung goes into his stomach but is still attached to the line so it lets us monitor where he is. Very few people do it this way. It’s a finesse game that’s taken me literally hundreds of hours to perfect.
After the gator took the bait, Kelley moved the boat within 20 yards and snagged the huge gator with another rod spooled with 200 pound test fishing line, which the gator snapped.
With plan A foiled, the fishermen switched to a 1,000 pound line equipped with a snag hook. With the gator successfully hooked, the men donned leather gloves and settled in for the fight of their lives.
“It was epic,” Kelley said. “It was a crazy and old-fashioned way, but that’s just how we wanted to do it.”
After an exhausting four and a half hour fight, the huge gator was finally brought to the edge of the boat where it was dispatched with a bangstick. With the battle over, it still took the men an hour to drag the huge gator into the 17-foot boat.
The huge gator unofficially makes the top 10 heaviest gators taken in Florida since 1983.