11-year-old Wasilla girl wins certificate for catching youth category trophy burbot
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Imagine going ice fishing and hooking a fish that’s almost as big as you are. That’s exactly what happened to one 11-year-old girl from Wasilla recently. Aimee Pike was fishing with family friends on Lake Louise when she managed to catch a burbot.
“So everyone was out by the fire and I decided to grab my gloves from my tent and when I got there, my pole was off its stand in the water, like going in it,” Pike said. “And when I grabbed the pole I set the hook almost immediately and then I started to reel and it was taking my hands in the water with the pole — that fish was pulling really hard.”
The group was on a three-day trip and Pike managed to land the fish on the third night around midnight, right before heading back home. She won a certificate for catching a youth category trophy burbot.
“I was thinking ‘how am I going to get this out of the water?’ Because it was pulling me under with the fish. And it was just kinda crazy, I could see the tail flopping at the top of the water but I couldn’t identify what fish it was,” Pike said. “[...] When I got that fish out of the water I was so happy.”
Pike and her family brought the fish into Alaska Department of Fish and Game once they were back — a 34.5 inch, 9.5-pound burbot. It was sitting in the freezer for two days, most likely losing a pound or two due to dehydration.
Pike said the fish is still in the freezer, waiting to be eaten by friends and family. As for what’s next for this fisherwoman? She said this summer she would like to catch a halibut.
Correction: A spokesperson with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has clarified that the burbot Aimee Pike caught was not a state record. The state record burbot was 24 pounds and 12 ounces caught in 1976 at Lake Louise. Pike was given a certificate for catching a youth category trophy burbot, and it does not mean the catch was a state record in either the adult or youth categories of the Trophy Fish Program. The spokesperson said despite the correction, they want to celebrate Pike’s accomplishment and think it’s great she’s getting out and fishing.
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