State record-breaking catfish caught

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Mike Stone with his record-breaking 35-pound catfish.

Mike Stone with his record-breaking 35-pound catfish.

Fishermen, catfish connoisseurs or those with an interest in the offbeat will appreciate this story–the Colorado Division of Wildlife has reported that the biggest catfish ever caught in the state was reeled in at Aurora Reservoir last weekend.

Officials say Mike Stone caught a 35-pound channel catfish on July 26, setting a new Colorado state record.

A regular at the reservoir since 2003, Stone said he never set out to break any records and was just visiting his favorite fishing hole.

Those who fish might be interested to know that Stone was using a Shakespeare “Ugly Stick” rod, 6-pound test line, a sinker and a floating jig head tipped with a nightcrawler, something DOW officials called “an unorthodox combination.”

Stone’s catfish measured 37-inches in length and weighed 35.22 pounds – nearly 2 pounds heavier than the previous record of 33-pounds, 8-ounces, caught in 1994 by John McKeever at Hertha Reservoir in Larimer County.

Unfortunately, Stone’s catch pales in comparison to the largest catfish ever caught in the world, a 646-pound fish caught in Thailand in 2005.

Stone credited his wife for his accomplishment, saying “she kicks my butt out of bed early on the weekends so she can sleep in.”

He plans to mount his record-breaking fish.

To view the Colorado fishing records, visit the DOW Web site.