Big Kansas Rainbow Trout

Big Kansas Rainbow Trout

Northeastern Kansas isn't graced with the resplendent  trout waters that Matt Straw so gracefully writes about. In fact, it's likely that Straw and many other anglers of his caliber would find our waterways to be rather dispiriting places to ply.


Nevertheless, we make do, and we occasionally catch a few rainbow trout at a several of our reservoirs during the cold-water months. For instance, Steve Desch of Topeka, Kansas, and I spend about four hours on Mar. 5 doing what we call bass fishing for trout. On this outing, we caught 18 rainbow trout that ranged in size from two pounds to more than four pounds. (For more information about our bass fishing for trout tactics, please consult this blog: https://www.in-fisherman.com/2012/02/22/bass-fishing-for-trout/)



This morning Clyde Holscher of Topeka, Kansas, and Guide Lines Guide Service, who frequently fishes with Desch and me, sent me the following account he wrote about a 14.28-pound rainbow trout that was caught by one his friends:

"Jay Melkus of Topeka , who is an on-call nurse for Grace Hospice, boated what may be the new Kansas record rainbow trout.


Melkus and Steve Dawdy of Topeka were fishing Lake Shawnee during the evening of Mar. 7.


The wind had howled all day, but it had begun to lay by late afternoon, which gave Melkus and Dawdy a few hours to fish and probe some of the lake's rocky shorelines.

On this outing, Melkus wielded a six-foot, six-inch St. Croix rod and a Pflueger President reel spooled with Trilene four-pound-test monofilament line.

To the line, he affixed a weighted bobber. Three feet below the bobber, he attached one of his hand-tied 1/80-ounce marabou jigs in a fawn-brown hue.

He presented this jig-and-bobber combo to the trout by executing a 25-foot cast towards a rocky shoreline. Then he retrieved it by slowly cranking the reel handle. At times his jig was virtually motionless and almost in a suspended state.

He and Dawdy were having a delightful time as they tangled with six handsome rainbow trout.

At 6:30 p.m., the delightful spell turned electrifying when Melkus' bobber slipped below the surface and a 20-minute donnybrook ensued.

As Melkus battled this behemoth, he was well aware that he should not rely on the drag mechanism of his spinning reel. Instead, Melkus, who is a veteran and talented angler, implemented the classic back-reeling maneuver when the trout made its frequent, electrifying, soul-stirring and nearly overwhelming surges. This procedure allowed the line to smoothly peel off the spool of Melkus' spinning reel.

After boating the fish and taking several cellphone photographs, Melkus and Dawdy stared at the fish and one another in disbelief for what seemed like hours. Eventually they decided to get the fish properly identified, measured and weighed. Thus, they put the monster on ice for the night. Straightaway on the morning of Mar 8, they headed to Herman's Meat Market, where its congenial employees weighed what will certainly be the new Kansas record rainbow trout.

Melkus' trout weighed 14.28 pounds. It measured 30.5 inches in length with a girth of 18.75 inches.

The state record was broken twice last year in a matter of weeks. Will Melkus' trout withstand the test of time?"


Recommended for You

Steve Quinn talks new softbaits for bass from Berkley. Bass

Sensational New Softbaits for Bass

Steve Quinn - April 22, 2019

Steve Quinn talks new softbaits for bass from Berkley.

This is not your run-of-the-mill fish recipe! Buttery, savory pecans are seasoned up to make an irresistible and addictive crust for catfish fillets Fish Recipes

Pecan-Crusted Catfish Fillets Recipe

Emilie Bailey

This is not your run-of-the-mill fish recipe! Buttery, savory pecans are seasoned up to make...

Which of the ten is the best? You decide. Bass

10 Best Bass Fishing States In America

Matt Straw - November 01, 2017

Which of the ten is the best? You decide.

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

New Optimum and Optimum TS Downriggers from Canon

New Optimum and Optimum TS Downriggers from Canon

From rugged reliability to smooth integration of cutting edge technology across several different platforms, OSG's Lynn Burkhead learns that there's much to like about the new Optimum and Optimum TS downriggers from Canon.

X-Factor Smallmouths

X-Factor Smallmouths

The In-Fisherman staff keeps it on the cutting edge, as they use the X-Factor plus topwater lures for smallmouths.

Mustad

Mustad's Inkvader Octopus Live Jig

From big fish to small, just about any saltwater game fish out there will love the new Mustad Inkvader Octopus Live Jig that Mustad's Russ Whisler shows to OSG's Lynn Burkhead.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

Catfish are among the most popular groups of fish with over 7 million catfish anglers nationwide. Catfish

All About Catfish

Rob Neumann

Catfish are among the most popular groups of fish with over 7 million catfish anglers...

'Walleyes spawn in spring and understanding spring walleye migrations, whether you live north or south, will help you pinpoint their predictable locations year after year. 

Walleyes spawn in spring, but spring may arrive in February in Mississippi, March in Walleye

Understanding Spring Walleye Migrations

Gord Pyzer - June 02, 2018

'Walleyes spawn in spring and understanding spring walleye migrations, whether you live north...

Now more than ever, understanding each category's strong suits is critical to choosing a powerplant that best fits your personal needs and preferences. Boats & Motors

2- Vs. 4-Cycle Outboard Motors

Dan Johnson - April 16, 2018

Now more than ever, understanding each category's strong suits is critical to choosing a...

See More Stories

More Midwest Finesse

The segmented body and array of colors make the Googan Bait's Rattln' Ned a must-have finesse bait. Midwest Finesse

Googan Bait's Rattlin' Ned

Ned Kehde - August 20, 2019

The segmented body and array of colors make the Googan Bait's Rattln' Ned a must-have finesse...

The unique tail design on the 4.0 Cross Hair as a thin ridge, or “rudder” on it as well to give more rigidity and help the bait track correctly in current. Midwest Finesse

Angler's Choice 4.0 Cross Hair

Ned Kehde - October 14, 2019

The unique tail design on the 4.0 Cross Hair as a thin ridge, or “rudder” on it as well to...

Berkley Powerbait Zestail combines the shape of a tube and the action of a twin tail grub into one bait. Midwest Finesse

Berkley's Powerbait Zesttail

Ned Kehde - September 16, 2019

Berkley Powerbait Zestail combines the shape of a tube and the action of a twin tail grub into...

See More Midwest Finesse

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

×