International Underwater Spearfishing Association
Men Sling / Polespear
On 8/12/16 I embarked on a quest, which I had been dreaming of taking for years now. I had been watching the IUSA world records for the fish in my region and felt that a number of them were within my reach. Unfortunately, underwater spearfishing is a sport that is relatively unknown in Michigan. Some friends and I had recently started the Michigan Spearfishing Association; Michigan’s first and only nonprofit underwater spearfishing group. We were badly in need of members and some means of generating local interest. I had long ago recognized the potential value of IUSA World Records and the interest in the sport and publicity opportunities that they were capable of generating. With this in mind, I began putting in the hours scouting, fishing and constructing my first homemade pole spear. It wasn’t long before I was able to secure my first IUSA World Record for common carp with the spear I had built, I followed up with a record 5.1lb bowfin just 12 days later. I had already shot a record 5.7lb bowfin earlier in the day at at a the first spot I dove. I decided to try a new area that a friend had turned me on to. When I got there I was thrilled to see that the water conditions were the best I had seen in over a month with up to 12’ of visibility. I was doing one last drift before dark in an attempt to fill a sucker record that I had been hunting for over a week now. I was seeing hundreds of fish but almost all of them 4lbs and under. In the course of a half dozen trips I shot at least 4 fish that should have made the cut and all tore off or took glancing hits and escaped. About half way through the drift I came around a current break and was right in the middle of a large school of fish, suckers, drum, walleye and a massive pike all in one spot. Again all the suckers were fairly small until I spotted one in the center of the school much larger than the others. I already had my pole spear drawn and I lined up a long shot and let it fly. The spear hit the fish low in the belly and tore him open. I was terrified it was going to rip out. I pounced on the fish and spear, digging my fingers into his gills like I was hanging on to a lifeline. I quickly dispatched the fish and swam to the shallows. When I pulled it out the water I knew it was well over the 5lbs I needed for the record. I was elated! I had a conviction that today would be the day that I filled this record as soon as I saw the spot and I was right. I finished my drift shooting 3 drum. Once I got in, I hurried to my truck and put the fish on my Mako certified scale. It weighed 6.3lbs and was my second world record of the day! And 5th in a month. When I began this quest I knew that eventually I would shoot 2 in one day and it did not take long. If you want my prediction, I will best that yet. Now on to a triple header or whatever the river brings my way.
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