Mpls. Man Catches 'Fish of a Lifetime' on Lake Nokomis

Updated: 06/30/2013 8:36 AM By: Maricella Miranda

Craig Quam caught a giant tiger muskie on Lake Nokomis
Craig Quam caught a giant tiger muskie on Lake Nokomis
Photo: Photo courtesy of Craig Quam.

Craig Quam caught "the fish of a lifetime."

It happened Tuesday night, June 25, while boating on Lake Nokomis in Minneapolis with his two neighbors. The 47-year-old was bobber fishing with a shiner minnow, a very small pole and an 8-pound braided line when he saw his bobber dip into the water.

Quam reeled the line in and felt a slight tug.

Then, nothing.

He felt an even bigger tug. Quam set the hook and the fish "started running from the boat." Quam set the reel's drag. For about 15 minutes, the fish ran and Quam reeled the creature in, again and again.

Halfway through the fight, the fish leaped into the air, revealing the gigantic tiger muskie.

"Then we got really excited," said Quam, of Minneapolis. "I've never seen a live fish that big."

Quam's neighbor grabbed a small net and helped pull the fish into the boat. While flopping around the boat, the fish ripped off the toenail of his neighbor's 14-year-old son.

The friends hurried to take the creature's measurements - 42 inches long and more than 30 pounds (the boat didn't have a scale). Quam then safely returned the muskie to the water.

"What do you do with a fish that big?" Quam said. "It's a trophy. I didn't want to kill it."

The fish swam away, tired but healthy enough to swim another day.  

"I'm guessing that it is the fish of the lifetime."

Even so, Quam plans to fish another day, too.