International Underwater Spearfishing Association
World Record  
8.5 kg. ,   18.8 lbs.
Cabezon    Scorpaenichthys marmoratus
Record Category: Men Speargun

Diver: Kelly w Gillette
Date: 7/2/2015
Location: US

My brother (Kevin Gillette) cousin (Allen Hagstrom) and I were shorediving the kelp beds west of Langely on Whidbey Island, WA.  I was using an 80cm Pathos custom inverted roller I made with an MVD muzzle and reel. The tide was flooding and we were using the current to push us along the beds. Visibility was 5-10 feet and the water was 58-60 Fahrenheit surface temperature with a drop to 54 on the bottom in 40 feet.  About 30 dives in I landed near an underwater ridge that drops from 45 to 125 feet on a sheer face.  At the top of the ridge was loose structure and some boulders bordering the edge of the shallower kelp bed.  When I hit bottom I started working the drop off line moving around boulders towards the kelp bed, sun at my back.  About 1 minute in I rounded a large kelp covered Boulder and under the stalks on the reverse side I saw the cabezon's head.  Heads are deceiving on these fish as a 10 pounder has a similar sized head to a 18 pounder, so I positioned my shot and scanned the kelp for its tail... It was a big one so I fired and got a solid shot straight through its head, engaging the flopper. Once shot, the fish bolted for the crevasse under the rock, but I had already grabbed the line and shot to the surface, managing to clear any possible obstructions.  Once on the surface I bled it and strung it on my belt stringer. Sensing potential for this fish to be the biggest I'd ever shot,  I gathered up my dive buddies so we could start to work our way back to the vehicle to get a weight on the fish, stopping only to collect some crabs on the way. My portable had the weight at 19 pounds, so I called WA Fisheries to find a certified scale to get an official weight, 18.81 pounds, a record quality fish and the end to a fantastic dive day.

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