Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

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This 44 1/2-inch northern pike bit a #9 Rapala Taildancer that Darrel Brauer was trolling behind his canoe. He released the fish after snapping this photo. Fred Lake, Ontario. Field & Stream Online Editors
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Ph.D. candidate Paul Vescei, here with a huge muskie, attends the Warnell School of Forestry & Natural Resources at the University of Georgia. Field & Stream Online Editors

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Kris W. DeLaurier caught this 32-inch northern on a Texas rig in Ontario. The fish was eating a smaller pike and was too ornery to let go-“-Kris never had a hook in it.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Earlier this fall, Mike Lincolnhol caught this 45-inch muskie in Michigan’s Murray Lake. He was using a perch glide bait.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Rhonda Ledin caught and released this 44-inch tiger muskie near Hayward, Wis. this July.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Jon Solseth of Inver Grove Heights, Minn., caught this 4-pound-test line world record muskie in June of 2006. His girlfriend Joyce Rodgers tells the story:
“It was the last hour of the last day of our trip, about 5:30 pm. Jon, his brother Brian, and I were fishing for walleyes in 12 feet of water. Brian and I had gotten hung up on the bottom a bunch, and Jon was lecturing us about it when he got snagged himself and broke his walleye rod in half. So he grabbed the only rod he had left( an ultra-light reel spooled with 4-pound-test line) to keep on fishing.
A few minutes later he hollered out for us to reel up because he was snagged again! He was working on getting the snag loose, when it all of a sudden started to move… And he said “I guess I have a fish.” He played it for 15 minutes before we even got a glimpse.
Brian had been waiting with the net, but when the fish got close to the boat and we saw its size, I coaxed the net reluctantly away from him (as he is legally blind). I netted the fish and Jon hoisted it into the boat. We almost lost it as it flopped around, but Jon eventually grabbed it by the tail and got it under control on the floor of the boat. So there we were–we knew we had a huge fish but none of us really grasped at that moment just how big it really was. We took several photos and measurements. 57-inches long with a 29- or 30-inch girth. We have since learned it is estimated to have weighed over 60 pounds and was probably one of the largest muskies caught in the last 10 years!”

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Kendall DeJonge of Omaha caught this 39-inch northern last August in Stephens Lake in Manitoba. He was using a #4 red and white Dardevle spoon.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Brian Cleveland and a buddy caught this muskie at Mayfield Lake in Washington on August 18th.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Todd Scobee reeled in this muskie on Cave Run Lake in Morehead, Ky. this past March.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

This 40-inch northern came from the Mackenzie River in the Northwest Territories of Canada. Magaly Ojeda Voelzer holds it proudly–it tipped her 15-pound scale.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Keith West holds a 40-inch, 19-pound muskie that he took from the Susquehanna River in Owego, N.Y.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Kyle Blanchard, 8, caught this 25-pound 3-ounce northern pike this March while fishing with his father at Glen Lake in Vermont.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Duane Cory, from Sioux City, Iowa, with a northern he caught in 2006.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Andrew Kummerfeld hauled in this 47-inch muskie from Lake of the Woods in Canada.

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Brian Radtke, of Wisconsin Rapids, Wis. with a 46-inch muskie that he released after taking this photo.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Last July, Bruce Johnston pulled this 48-inch pike out of Misaw Lake in Saskatchewan.

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Spencer Lofgren, 6, caught this pike this last April at Lake of the Woods, Minn.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

In April, Brian Dittman caught and released this 40-inch tiger muskie from a private lake near Kansas City, Kansas.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Ken Sherburn of Grand Rapids, Mich. with a 46-inch, 21 1/2-pound pike in northern Ontario. He hooked the fish on a red & gold spinnerbait and fought it for 20 minutes. Says Ken, “The pike did not come close to fitting in the net. I love the brilliant, bright red specks along its body.”

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“This photo shows my buddy Jeff with a 46 1/4-inch pike caught in Ontario.”
–Robert L. Connor

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Tanaya Perpich caught this 53-inch muskie in northern Minnesota. It was her second 50-plus-incher this month.

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Donald Brongiel of New Lenox, Ill. with a 46 1/2-inch northern pike in Saskatchewan, one of seven 40-plus-inch pike he caught over four days. Prior to the trip, Brongiel hadn’t caught a pike over 28 inches.

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My husband and I took our 9-year-old daughter Lexy Havlock fishing in a row boat in the Kalamazoo River in Galesburg, Mich. and she caught this huge 33-inch northern pike weighing 8 1/2 pounds. –KrisAnn Havlock.

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Carl Pickett of Toronto caught this muskie out of Rice Lake in the Kawarthas of Ontario. He was using black and white buck tail Mepps. He released the fish, which he calls “53 inches of goodness!”

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Eight years of hard work finally paid off for Kurt Robak when he landed this 37-inch muskie, his first.

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Mark Cieslarski of Woodridge, Ill. stretches out a nice pike.

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Joshua Williford caught this 43-inch northern while fishing in Manitoba.

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While fishing for walleye, Jon Zimmerman of Wedowee, Ala. caught this 37-inch muskie from the Chippewa Flowage near Hayward, Wis. He was using a Northland 1/8-ounce Mimic Minnow jig.

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“A picture from my northwest Montana bachelor party weekend. I may be the only guy that has ever been in a hurry to get home and show his fiance pictures of his party!”
-Darren Schuldheiss, Seattle, Wash.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

A boy’s first pike: Treycin Essig and his father, Matt, with this 12 2/3-pound northern taken from the Winnipeg River in Ontario.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Christopher Karickhoff’s son with his 40-inch pike.
“It’s going to be next to impossible to make him content with bluegill fishing anymore,” says papa.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Eric Lofquist and his muskelunge.

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Rick Barton hauled in this 41-inch pike during a fishing trip to Silsby Lake in Manitoba.

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Patrick, from Buffalo, N.Y. caught and released this muskie while fishing in Ontario. Also shown is his brother Nick.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Jimmy McKean caught this muskie on the Chippewa flowage near Hayward, Wis.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Dear F&S;, I caught this 35-inch mystery fish in the Boundary Waters of Minnesota. It weighed close to 13 pounds. We caught a lot of pike of similar size in the lake, but this fish was essentially silver in color, with no obvious pike pattern. When it was fighting in the water, and even slightly noticeable in the picture, you can see a hint of vertical bars, but the fins and fish appeared to be solid silver. I don’t recall the number of lower jawline markings. Any thoughts?
–Brian Dittman, Granite City, Ill. Fishing Editor John Merwin thinks the fish is a silver pike, an uncommon (though not especially rare) color variation of the northern pike.
–the Eds.

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Lisa Olds reeled in this pike while fishing at Kashabowie Outpost in Ontario last August.

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Chase Botkin of Kyle, Texas with a monster pike he caught in Canada’s Yukon Territory.

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It was the first day of our annual fishing trip to Temple Bay Lodge in Ontario. My husband told our guide of 15 years that he thought the net was awfully small. John said, “anything you get on your line I can get into the boat-¿. After lunch we went to a favorite rock pile. I was napping, but had my line out. I pulled up on my line to keep from getting snagged in the rocks, but felt a faint movement, so I set the hook. When I finally got the fish to the boat John said “I don’t think I can get this fish into the boat.” John positioned himself such that he was able to jam the head of the fish into the net and lever flip him into the boat – right onto my lap.
The net was destroyed, but the fish and I survived just fine. This is a 50-pound muskellunge and I caught it on 8-pound-test line with a jig and minnow. I hope to catch him again one day – and I know my guide will land him come hell or high water! –paula588

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

This photo came courtesy of Mark Bonar Jones of the United Kingdom, who writes:
“We don’t quite have the outdoor & fishing opportunities that you have over there (Our island’s too small and everywhere’s owned by someone or another… You can’t go five miles without trespassing!) Anyway, what we’ve got I try to make the most of, and last Sunday I caught my personal best pike on the fly and thought, ‘Hey, I know where I’m gonna’ send this!'”
Jones caught the 19-pounder on the River Thames near Oxfordshire.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Steven Swenson caught this 37 ¿¿-inch northern pike in Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Canoe Area with a jig and a minnow.

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Jim Anderson caught this 38-inch northern on a recent trip to Canada.

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On an early September evening, Charles Parker caught this 46-inch muskie off a fishing pier on Lake Namakagon in northern Wisconsin. He was using a Shumway Hot Head spinnerbait, and released the fish unharmed after snapping this picture.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Joey Saiz, 14, caught this northern pike on the Black River in Lacrosse, Wis. He was using his favorite lure, a Dardevle.

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Nine-year-old Anthony Colombo is 48-inches tall. The pike he holds is 26-inches long. He caught it out of Ontario’s Lady Evelyn Lake on a red and white Dardevle spoon.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Chris Opper of Antigo, Wis. won the local ice-fishing derby with this 29-inch northern pike, which he caught on 8-pound-test mono with a dead shiner. The fish netted him $25.

Photo Gallery: Watch Your Fingers!

Edward Machacek caught this 35 1/2-inch northern on a crappie rig with 6-pound test. “Naturally we put it back in for other people to enjoy,” says Machacek.

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Mark Smith, of Bellefonte, Pa., caught this 37-inch northern this August on Raney Lake, a floatplane ride away from Chapleau, Ontario. He used a Shakespeare WonderRod with a jointed plug. After taking this photo, he released the pike.

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In a day full of minnows, one 8-pound pike makes up for a lot. Eric is all smiles after landing this one. Oseetah Lake, New York.