Last November when Tom Aufiero was fly fishing for Atlantic Salmon on the landlocked Torch Lake, surely the last thing he expected was to catch the new world record, but somehow that’s exactly what happened. The new record now stands at 26 pounds 12 ounces and is the new official IGFA All-Tackle world record for landlocked Atlantic Salmon. Caught on 6 pound test line!
“I was pulling my hair out, running out of hope having tried everything,” said Supinski about Aufiero’s fish. “I’d changed flies 16 or 17 times. Then I decided there must be some mysis shrimp in the lake and put one on figuring to give it one more try.
“Tom dead-drifted the shrimp and she saw it, then moved three to four feet off the bottom and just engulfed it. Tom, being a good steelhead fisherman, knew not to set the hook too early. Then he stuck the fish and all hell broke loose.”
Aufiero said he fought the salmon for 15 minutes and called it “a dogged fight,” before landing the big female.
Atlantic salmon, which are prized for their fight, have historically been found only in two places in Michigan, the St. Mary’s River and Torch Lake, where the state introduced them to create an Atlantic Salmon fishery. Atlantic salmon were once native to Lake Ontario but became extinct by 1900, according to the Department of Natural Resources and Environment.