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Former resident shares BIG fish story

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By CHRISTY CLEM
Special to The Trimble Banner

We chartered a 60-foot fishing vessel called the Point Runner and went deep sea fishing out of the Outer Banks of North Carolina on Sunday, June 5.

 We were hoping to catch some big fish and have a good time. We ended up landing memories that will last a lifetime!

We began the morning with the “Point Runner” trolling near a boat wreck site where we caught a dolphin fish, a king mackerel, and several amberjacks. That afternoon we decided to travel 65 miles offshore to deeper waters in the Gulf Stream in an attempt to catch some big fish. To our dismay, the fish weren’t biting.

We trolled for hours without a single bite, but then our luck changed. Our prayers had been answered!

Within minutes of me saying “Amen” after asking for a safe and plentiful fishing trip, the tides had changed. We snagged five tuna within seconds of each other–we must have trolled through a school of “Big Eye Tuna.” We were elated! But now the real work would begin.

We each grabbed a rod and held the lines tight until it was our chance to be strapped into the fighting chair and reel it in. It felt like the fight of your life, you would reel in and the powerful fish would pull the line out. There isn’t anything you can do; you let the fish pull out the line that you had just worked so hard to reel in, then do it all over again. Donna had her turn in the fighting chair first and we were amazed at the sight of this enormous fish.

Little did we know that I would reel in an even bigger fish when it was my turn. Finally, Nick had his opportunity, and he did not disappoint. Hours had now elapsed and we were exhausted, only adrenaline to keep us going. We had two more fish on the lines that had a greater will to survive than we had the remaining strength to reel them in, but we were happy! We stared at the three enormous fish now in our boat with amazement. We had just reeled in fish that weighed more than we do! We knew this would be a legendary tale that only fish folklore is made of.

It was time to head back to the marina and have our fish weighed in. We quickly realized that what we accomplished is not an everyday occurrence. We felt like celebrities when we pulled into the marina. Captain Greg had called ahead to the marina and bragged on our catch, the word must have spread quickly. More than 20 people were anxiously awaiting the big reveal and wanted to hear our story.

Donna’s fish weighed in at 169 lbs, Nick’s was 160 lbs, and mine was a whopping 187 lbs. The three of us caught the three biggest fish that day!

The deep sea fishing trip created lasting memories, I’m certain we’ll reminisce each time we eat one of our many tuna steaks. 273 pounds of meat will last the three of us a good while along with great stories and bragging rights until next year!

Christy and Nick Clem are Trimble County High School graduates. Earlier this month with friend Donna Franklin of Cox’s Creek in tow they enjoyed a fishing adventure in the Atlantic Ocean that begs to be shared.