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Video: Angler Lands Mammoth 17.19-Pound Columbia River Walleye

trophy walleye
Andy Fiolka/Facebook

“I’ll be honest, short of the birth of my daughters, it was a feeling that is absolutely the best.”

If a pair of record fish being landed in the last two months are any indication, 2018 is shaping up to be the Year of the Walleye.

In early February, we brought you the story of an 18.5-pound beast of a walleye pulled through the ice of Ontario’s Bay of Quinte. Now a trophy walleye from Washington is making the headlines.

Andy Fiolka trolled up a fish-of-a-lifetime February 10 while working the walleye-rich waters of Washington’s Columbia River. Its weight? A freakish 17.19 pounds!

trophy walleye

Here’s the story as posted to Fiolka’s Facebook page:

“Today, I was able to accomplish something I never thought was possible. By the grace of God, I caught a walleye of absolute elite proportions.

First, I have to thank Rapala for making crankbaits that I have sooo much confidence in. I caught this fish trolling a #10 Deep Husky Jerk in UV Pink. I love trolling cranks. I’ve learned so much over the years from the elite anglers that call the Missouri River in SD home. I learned a long time ago that you can’t beat em, might as we’ll join them. I made myself learn how and when to crank lead. While I’m confident in my abilities, I have a lot to learn and that’s what it’s about. Marcus Quam that’s you dude. I’ve learned an incredible amount from you.

I also want to thank the Montana crew for all of your help during the entire ordeal. Thanks for helping with pics and video and for the use of your scale/tape. To say all of this was stressful is an understatement. You guys are awesome dudes! Thrilled to spend the week with ya!

Lastly, thank you to all of you Pacific Northwest walleye guys that have gone out of your way to befriend and encourage me. You are all incredible sticks and trust that I’ll do everything in my power to help you protect these amazing fish in the best gawd damn walleye fishery in the nation!

Now onto the fish. She was 35” long, 21.5” girth, and now the weight. A fish I’ll never ever beat. 17.19 pounds!!!! My gawd I’ve gotta let that sink in! I’m forever humbled…”

trophy walleye

trophy walleye

Talk about a sweet release video, from two different perspectives:

Posted by Andy Fiolka on Saturday, February 10, 2018

Even better than catching them is letting them swim…

Posted by Andy Fiolka on Saturday, February 10, 2018

For those wondering, here’s the lucky bait.

trophy walleye
Bass Pro Shops

The very next day, Andy updated his Facebook status:

24 hours later and I’m still in disbelief. I didn’t sleep last night, I’m absolutely worn out. People – you have to…

Posted by Andy Fiolka on Sunday, February 11, 2018

Congrats on what truly is a fish of a lifetime, Andy! We can’t imagine the feeling you must have felt when you finally slid the net under her.

Did you enjoy this post? CLICK HERE to view more articles by Justin Hoffman. You can also check out his Photography Site Justin Hoffman Outdoors, as well as follow him on Facebook Justin Hoffman Outdoors, Instagram hoffmanoutdoors, Twitter @HoffmanOutdoors, or subscribe to his YouTube channel Justin Hoffman.


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Video: Angler Lands Mammoth 17.19-Pound Columbia River Walleye