10 of the Biggest World-Record Muskies Ever Caught

These monsters are so rare, they're more like the fish of 10 million casts

Few gamefish inspire quite as much awe as the muskellunge—the toothy, elusive trophy hailed as the fish of 10,000 casts. Several muskies have made a run at the world record, but none have yet managed to topple the nearly 70-year-old reign of Cal Johnson’s 67-pound 8-ounce freak. That said, each of these muskies is truly gargantuan and has secured a place in the International Game Fish Association’s record book.

1. Cal Johnson – 67 Pounds 8 Ounces

A black and white photo of a man holding up a large muskie fish.
Cal Johnson’s muskie might never be bested. The skin mount of the fish is still displayed Moccasin Bar in Hayward, Wisconsin. IGFA

Angler: Cal Johnson

Monster-Muskie Specs: 67 pounds 8 ounces

World-Record Line Class: All Tackle

Catch Date: July 24, 1949

Location: Lake Court Oreilles, Wisconsin

Fishing Method: Unknown

Lure or Bait Used: Pike Oreno


2. Kenneth O’Brien – 65 Pounds

A young man stands beside a hanging muskie fish.
Thirty-two years ago, Kenneth O’Brien came with two pounds of tying Johnson’s record. IGFA

Angler: Kenneth O’Brien

Monster-Muskie Specs: 65 pounds

World-Record Line Class: 12-lb.

Catch Date: October 16, 1988

Location: Blackstone Harbour, Ontario

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: 4-inch Rapala


3. Joe Seeberger – 58 Pounds

Three men holding up a large muskie fish.
Joe Seeberger’s muskie is bound for the wall. IGFA

Angler: Joe Seeberger

Monster-Muskie Specs: 58 pounds

World-Record Line Class: 8-lb.

Catch Date: October 13, 2012

Location: Lake Bellaire, Michigan

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: Sucker minnow


4. Gene Borucki – 56 Pounds 7 Ounces

An older man holds up a large muskie while a lady looks on.
Gene Borucki proudly hoists his 56-pound monster. IGFA

Angler: Gene Borucki

Monster-Muskie Specs: 56 pounds 7 ounces

World-Record Line Class: 30-lb.

Catch Date: August 30, 1984

Location: Manitou Lake, Ontario

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: Rapala


5. Gary Ishii – 55 Pounds

A man holding up a large muskie fish.
The length of Gary Ishii’s muskie almost matched the angler’s height. IGFA

Angler: Gary Ishii

Monster-Muskie Specs: 55 pounds

World-Record Line Class: 50-lb.

Catch Date: October 11, 1981

Location: Moon River, Ontario

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: Jointed Swim Whizz

Read Next: How to Trick a Muskie with a Figure 8


6. George McQuillen – 52 Pounds 4 Ounces

A man in an orange vest holds up a large muskie.
George McQuillen caught this 52-pounder on 20-pound line. IGFA

Angler: George McQuillen

Monster-Muskie Specs: 52 pounds 4 ounces

World-Record Line Class: 20-lb.

Catch Date: November 12, 1994

Location: St. Lawrence River

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: Kwik Fish


7. William Pivar – 45 Pounds

A black and white photo of two men holding up a large muskie fish.
William Pivar’s muskie should’ve scored bonus pounds for the great vanity plate. IGFA

Angler: William Pivar

Monster-Muskie Specs: 45 pounds

World-Record Line Class: 16-lb.

Catch Date: July 26, 1980

Location: 1000 Island Lake, California

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: Believer


8. Ken Hunt – 44 Pounds 11 Ounces

A black and white photo of a man holding up a large muskie fish.
Ken Hunt caught his record muskie on the 4th of July…with a nightcrawler. What could be more American? IGFA

Angler: Ken Hunt

Monster-Muskie Specs: 44 pounds 11 ounces

World-Record Line Class: 6-lb.

Catch Date: July 4, 2002

Location: Lake Mille Lacs, Minnesota

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: Nightcrawler


9. Lalie Tronel-Peyroz – 41 Pounds 1 Ounce

A man and young child holding up a large muskie fish.
Lalie Tronel-Peyroz crushed the previous female-junior record of 28 pounds 8 ounces with her 41-pounder. IGFA

Angler: Lalie Tronel-Peyroz

Monster-Muskie Specs: 41 pounds 1 ounce

World-Record Line Class: Junior (Female)

Catch Date: November 21, 2011

Location: St. Lawrence River

Fishing Method: Trolling

Lure or Bait Used: Depth Raider


10. Luke Meverden – 40 Pounds

A man and a young boy holding up a large muskie.
Luke Meverden caught his record muskie when he was 12 years old. IGFA

Angler: Luke Meverden

Monster-Muskie Specs: 40 pounds

World-Record Line Class: Junior (Male)

Catch Date: August 9, 1999

Location: Leech Lake, Minnesota

Fishing Method: Casting

Lure or Bait Used: Northland Jig