This lucky lady landed the fish of a lifetime. Check out these photos to see what a true trophy muskie looks like!

Originally Published by Wide Open Spaces, October 12, 2015

By Justin Hoffman

Christine Cope, an avid multi-species angler from Ottawa, Ontario Canada, headed out Oct. 10 for a day of muskie fishing. What she came home with was a new personal best fish.

Spending the day with long-time fishing partner Darryl Crossett, owner of Reel Busy Sport Fishing Charters, the duo were trolling the fish-rich Ontario side of Lake St. Clair.

The day started early, with the boat hitting the water at 7:30 a.m.

Eight-and-a-half hours of straight trolling resulted in the first fish of the outing – a 42-inch beauty – that struck at 4 p.m.

One hour later the trophy fish hit.

At the time, Cope had chosen to run a Bucher Depth Raider in a secret color pattern she had received a tip on. They were marking shad in the area, and as is usually the case, big predator fish are often close by.

Trolling at a speed of three to four miles per hour, the boat was working water between 10 and 20 feet deep. All of a sudden, a muskie stopped Cope’s bait dead in its tracks.

The fish was too large for the net, meaning Crossett had to expertly hand-land it after the monster fish burned through 200 feet of line.

“The fight felt like forever,” Cope said. “It had incredible strength.”

The trophy fish was carefully handled, and after a few quick pics for posterity, it was released back to the cold St. Clair water.

The tale of the tape? An incredible 55 inches long!

Caring more for the safety of the fish than any records, a girth measurement wasn’t taken in order to get the fish back into the water as quickly as possible. But as you can see from the photos, this was one fat fish.

“Some are saying it is one of the biggest out of Lake St. Clair,” Cope said. “For me it is definitely a dream fish and a memory I won’t soon forget.”

Photo courtesy of Christine Cope