Salmon & Steelhead Fishing photo

Bill Brush of Nevada City was fishing on Lake Tahoe July 20 when he reeled in a 5 pound, 2 ounce Kokanee salmon–a fish that has the potential to shatter a 40-year-old state record by 5 ounces.

According to The Sacramento Bee, Brush caught the fish around 67 feet down and almost immediately knew it was a better-than-average fish.

“The next thing that freak fish hit the line and we could tell he (Brush) was on to something the way the fish was banging on that rod. He played the fish perfectly,” Tahoe Sport Fishing Capt. Scott Carey told Lake Tahoe News

An average Kokanee weighs less than a pound and are 14 inches long. Brush’s fish taped out at 24.75 inches. Capt. Carey and his first mate had the fish certified with the California Game and Fish last week so it can be entered into the state’s record books. The current record is a 4 lb., 3 ounce fish caught by angler Dave Bournique in 1973.

According to a story in the Lake Tahoe News, anglers use corn on the tip of their lures because it resembles daphnia, a form of plankton that no longer exists in the lake. “That’s why we don’t have big Kokanee here like we did in the 70s,” John Shearer, owner of Tahoe Sport Fishing, said of the daphnia.

“They said there would never be a new record-sized kokanee pulled out of Lake Tahoe, but we proved them wrong,” first-mate Scott Hoffman told the Tahoe Daily Tribune.

Photo from the Lake Tahoe News.