Nick McCabe, 19, is the talk of the town in Lillooet, British Columbia, after he caught a decades-old sturgeon known as Pig Nose.
McCabe and Grimolfson are guides with River Monster Adventures, a Lillooet-based fishing company that offers sturgeon fishing tours and trips.
McCabe was out on the Fraser River just downstream of Lillooet Tuesday night with a group of clients. Grimolfson said it took two hours to reel in Pig Nose, about 60 kilometres outside of Lytton, B.C.
He guesses the fish weighs 650 pounds and measured him at 10 feet and two inches long with a five-and-a-half-foot girth.
“His name is Pig Nose and you can see why – he damaged his nose 40 years ago,” said Grimolfson, adding no one knows how the injury happened. “This fish has been the talk of fishing and sporting goods shops for years.
“So when his nose healed, it looks like a pig nose. As the legend lives on, you’d be in a sporting goods shop and you’d hear, ‘my buddy was sure he had Pig Nose on the line.’”
Grimolfson said they’re sure it’s the legendary sturgeon as the fish was tagged in the past and microchipped. He said the group followed the same protocol that’s used on all its fishing trips.
“Take some photos, videos, scan the fish with a scanner to see if he’s been tagged then as soon as it beeps, we know it’s been tagged,” he said. “Take some measurements, make sure the fish is healthy then let him go.
“That fish is probably close to 80 years old. You want to handle them very carefully.”
McCabe was out on the water with another group Wednesday, but will meet up with Global News Thursday for an interview.
In the meantime, Grimolfson said it’s just another notch in McCabe’s belt.
“He’s been doing really well all summer. He caught another really big fish a couple weeks ago. He saw it jump out of water and said, ‘I’m going to catch that fish.’ He fished in the same spot for four days and caught him.
“He is the sturgeon whisperer.”