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Lucky fishing rod is unlucky for halibut

Posted: Sunday, August 15, 2004

KENAI - Some anglers are lucky. Then there's the Carey family.

While fishing for halibut off Anchor Point last week, Ron Carey's sister, Bonnie White of Georgetown, Texas, hooked and landed a 300-pound halibut aboard Carey's 21-foot Silver Streak fishing boat. The catch brought to an end one of the most bizarre and lucky fishing stories to hit the Kenai Peninsula in a long time.

It started in June, when Carey, of Anchorage, was fishing with his wife, Nancy. A big halibut hit Nancy's line hard. Hard enough that it took all the tackle - rod, reel, hook, line and sinker - over the side of the boat.

Carey marked the spot with his on-board global positioning system.

A month later, on July 14, Carey was fishing in the same spot when an 85-year-old fishing buddy named "Old Charlie" managed to hook into the lost green halibut rod and bring it to the surface.

Carey sought repairs for the rod and reel that had spent a month on the ocean floor.

With the pole back in his hands, Carey returned to the waters of Cook Inlet earlier this week with Nancy, Bonnie White, and her husband, Richard, aboard. White used the green pole.

Not long after the four started fishing, she got a tug at the end of her line - a big one. A prolonged struggle with the enormous fish ensued.

Bonnie White pulled in the halibut, estimated at 330 pounds, based on its 84-inch length.

That the monster fish was caught on the same outfit Carey lost shouldn't have come as a surprise. After all, he said, the man who worked on the reel told him in July that Ron possessed a special piece of fishing gear.

"He said it was a blessed rod," Carey said.



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