For the family connections story as much as the 50-inch muskie with a 24-inch girth caught and released on Big Barbee Lake, Ed VanCleave earns fish of the week honors.
FOTW tops the Midwest Fishing Report each Wednesday in the Sun-Times. An extended online version is usually posted here by midnight Tuesday.
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Here's VanCleave's original note:
While fishing on Big Barbee lake (Indiana) Saturday morning 07-18-09 at 9:05 EST, I hooked, caught, photographed and released a Musky that was 50 inches long, with a girth of 24 plus inches. It was caught on a 10 inch Grandma bait in approximately 25 feet of water. Weather conditions were fall like, rain, overcast and cool. The water had a surface temperature of 74 degrees. Eric Fleming of Leesburg, IN netted this monster fish. This was definately a team effort!
I had a couple follow-up questions which brought this explanation back from the Local 134 electrician from Beverly:
``I have more pics of this big girl also. I have some awesome release pics, and clear photos of her swimming away. Eric and I have become freinds and fishing buddies and have had a dry spell with Muskys until last month and this month when we were fishing together. Eric caught a 40 inch Musky on Webster Lake, that I netted and photographed for him in June.
I called him Friday morning and told him I was coming down to the lakes with my wife Kim, daughter Grace (7yrs) and my son Charlie (6yrs) for the day.I told him hat I thought we stood a good chance at a big fish because T. Skilling said this was the coldwest week since I was born 1964. All the stars must have been lined up in our favor because the reason Eric and I went out Sat morning was because it was pouring rain and I could not take out the children. I did however take Kim and the kids out Friday night and we caught on nightcrawlers a nice big soft shell turtle,big blue gills,red ears,rock bass and large mouth a about a total of 30 fish combined.''
Good karma is what it sounds like to me.