Fisherman lands the big one and then avoids the big fuss

Posted: Sunday, November 17, 2002

MEDFORD, Ore. - A Grants Pass man made fly-fishing history last month when he hooked and landed a fall chinook salmon that officially weighed 71 1/2 pounds.

Grant Martinsen's salmon - captured on the lower Rogue River - was more than 8 pounds heavier than the all-time record for fly-casters set 15 years ago on northern Oregon's Trask River. And once certified by the International Game Fish Association, the salmon and Martinsen will get global publicity.

But Martinsen avoided the press by immediately heading on a hunting trip in northeastern Oregon.

"He told me there may be some kind of interest in his fish, that it could be big," said Sharon Martinsen, Grant's wife. "Then he said, 'Well, I'll see you later. I'm going hunting.' "

Jim Carey, proprietor of Gold Beach's Rogue Outdoor Store, where Martinsen took his catch, said people got pretty charged up.

"You would not believe the excitement this thing has generated. We're as proud of that fish as he could be."

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