It’s no secret that in 2019 we set 12 new IGFA records with Vicki Martin as the angler. Vicki is a very talented angler that has made it her goal to travel the world and set world records mainly with conventional tackle. She and her husband are a team that is very organized and focused on success. Vicki and her husband were booked to come back this year (2020) to re-break and set some new records but unfortunately due to Covid-19 decided to take a break and play it safe at their home in Florida.
Meredith McCord is another very accomplished world record chaser however her specialty is fly fishing. When Meredith McCord found out that Vicki’s spot at the lodge was open, she did not hesitate once to make arrangements to come to the lodge and set some records on the fly. It’s the Sheefish that really peeked Meredith McCord’s attention. As an accomplished angler with records from around the world (200+), the Sheefish is one she’s never heard of until she met the owner of the lodge Dan Paull.
Now I have met some dedicated anglers and most of them are men. In my time guiding it’s rare that anyone is ever willing to REALLY get after the game. What I mean is Sheefish like the late evening and early morning hours best. Not to say that they can’t be caught mid-day because they can however to really get the good bite you have to be EARLY or Late in the evening. Once I told Meredith McCord this, I was amazed to get a response of “ok great I guess we leave the dock at 6 am”. Did I mention she was dedicated? Most days she wouldn’t even want to leave the water. Some days it wasn’t until 6 pm that we arrived back at the dock. She is a true die-hard!
Sheefish are a unique fish and catching them on the fly can be a BLAST as long as you know where to look and how to put it in front of their face. For most of our runs, we fly fish for sheefish in that we are stripping small baitfish streamers with ten feet of T-11 to get the fly down in the water column. Sheefish, do not like the bright light so they will hide on the bottom looking up and attack by chasing to the surface usually erupting at the surface with the fly in the mouth. Fishing the fly like this, Meredith McCord was able to land many sheefish records on the Holitna River.
Most days were spent fishing for Sheefish however Pike also was on the menu and Meredith McCord already had a few records with Pike however breaking those records and setting a few new ones was her goal. Pike on the fly is a BLAST especially on topwater. During Meredith McCord’s time at the lodge fishing for Pike, she was setting a record here and there until the last day fishing for Pike. It’s almost as if the river decided to hold the best for last. I think it was this day that she landed roughly five new pike records and her best and the one I’m most impressed with a 15lb 10oz Pike on 2lb test. First, let me tell you it’s not easy hooking a big scrappy fish on a 2lb test let alone fighting it to the net. Especially a 15lb fish but Meredith McCord made it look easy.
Yes, Meredith McCord is a well-accomplished angler that makes it look easy on the fly. We are truly honored to be able to assist in her goal of setting world records.
To learn more about Meredith, visit meredithmccord.com
To learn more about IGFA visit igfa.org
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