Meredith McCord of Houston, Texas, set a pending International Game Fish Association tippet class document with a 36-pound, 12-ounce black drum she caught January 31 within the Louisiana marshlands. Her catch outweighs the standing document by greater than 12 kilos and was McCord’s second IGFA girls’s document in two days.
McCord is a world-class angler who enjoys greater than 200 days on the water annually. She spends a few of her time internet hosting fly fishing journeys all over the world via Meredith McCord on the Fly, however can be devoted to chasing IGFA world information. Since 2012 she has already set 231 of them—112 of which nonetheless stand.
You don’t rewrite the document guide that usually with out fishing deliberately, and that’s exactly what McCord and Captain Collin Huff have been doing once they determined situations in late January have been best for chasing a document McCord had lengthy coveted: the ladies’s 1-kilogram (2.2 kilos) tippet class document for purple drum, which can be identified as a redfish.
“A chilly entrance had moved via and despatched water temps plunging,” McCord tells Subject & Stream. “The forecast for the subsequent couple of days was good: chilly air, sunny skies, and no wind.” It’s very arduous casting with 2-pound tippet if there’s a wind, McCord explains, and the chilly water slows the fish down, in order that they don’t battle as arduous, rising her odds of touchdown them on ultralight sort out. McCord was utilizing a 5-weight rod, which she says helps defend the sunshine tippet and permits her to play the fish with finesse fairly than energy.
McCord and Huff set out on January 30. Huff poled the skiff as McCord solid a customized fly they name the “Critter Gitter.” She recognized a number of redfish within the 15- to 25-pound vary, all of which have been heavy sufficient to prime the prevailing document of 13 kilos. She solid to a large purple, however a “smaller” fish darted out and stole her fly. After taking part in it for quarter-hour, she obtained the fish at hand and found that it weighed 18-pounds, 1-ounce—nonetheless sufficient for the document. She documented the measurements wanted to use for the document, then launched the fish. Satisfied that she may do higher, she determined to attempt once more the subsequent day.
The Subsequent Day Introduced a Greater Fish—However It Wasn’t a Redfish
On January 31 McCord and Huff once more obtained into a gaggle of massive redfish. “Proper after we entered the flat I noticed this large again protruding of the water,” McCord recalled. “A black drum. We poled over to it, however Colin was like, ‘No, we’re on a mission, we’re going for purple drum, so let’s concentrate on what we got here right here to do.’”
They began chasing redfish, and McCord hooked one instantly. She knew it wouldn’t prime the 18-pounder from the day earlier than, so she performed the fish aggressively and broke it off pretty rapidly. As they made one other loop across the flat to get the solar at their backs, she noticed the black drum once more. “It was nonetheless meandering slowly round, and I used to be like, ‘How large do you suppose that’s?’” Huff guessed 20 kilos. McCord felt it was undoubtedly greater than the present document, and he or she would know: The present 1-kilogram tippet class document is a 17-pound, 12-oz fish caught in 2019 by none aside from McCord herself. “I informed Collin, let’s give it a shot.”
She made a number of casts earlier than dropping the fly “proper down over the nostril” of the fish. As McCord held her breath, “the fish stopped, really swam an inch or two in reverse, and sucked it proper in. He was on!”
“I cleared my line and obtained him on the reel,” McCord remembers. No sooner had she set the drag than the drum started to swim straight towards the boat. With no time for Huff to return down and wield the online, she determined to do it herself—a dangerous transfer with such mild tippet. Huff suggested towards it. However there was no time to do anything. McCord grabbed the online that lay at her toes. “I went down for the news, and lo and behold, the previous man swam proper within the web.”
In lower than three minutes she had damaged her personal IGFA mark with a fish twice as large as her earlier document. Or so she thought. McCord’s story, it seems, had yet one more twist. McCord submitted her fishing line for power testing, which is customary process for IGFA information. Though she makes use of a particular licensed line that’s examined a number of occasions on the manufacturing facility, McCord knew there was an opportunity the road would check out at the next tensile power than the two.2 kilos allowed by the 1-kilogram tippet class. Due to all of the variations in temperature this specific spool had gone via because of the large swings in climate, McCord was extra apprehensive than normal. Certain sufficient, the road broke at 2.38 kilos through the IGFA check, only a hair past the restrict for the two.2-pound tippet class.
Fortunately for McCord, the 36-pound, 12-ounce drum was nonetheless heavy sufficient to beat the standing document for the 2-kilogram tippet document, which was a 24-pound, 8-ounce black drum caught in 2010. This end result additionally implies that McCord’s 1-kilogram document nonetheless stands, giving the Texas angler information in three of the seven tippet lessons for the black drum: the 1-, 2- and 6-kilogram lessons. Pending approval of her 1-kilogram tippet class redfish, McCord may additionally maintain 4 of the seven tippet class information for that species within the 1-, 2-, 4-, and 8-kilogram classes. As soon as confirmed, the redfish would turn into McCord’s 232rd IGFA World Document and the 36-pound black drum, her 233rd.