With a fishing career spanning almost 70 years, when Sam Walker calls this mirror his “fish of a lifetime” you know it’s something special.
The retired architect caught the Gurm at 55lb 4oz from Fryerning Main Lake in Essex.
The 78-year-old told Carpfeed: “It’s the best fish I’ve caught. It really is the fish of a lifetime.”
He added: “This is my third season on the lake. I’ve had a couple of the other big fish – Charlie and the Dalmation – but this is my first fifty from there.
“Whenever you cast out you hope for a big fish, but I don’t believe you can specifically set your stall out for one. I’ve being fishing long enough to know it doesn’t work like that!”
The Hertfordshire angler typically fishes midweek sessions of about 30 hours and it was on the second morning of one of these that he received the bite.
“I had been getting a lot of bleeps from roach, but I heard a bleep and I thought ‘that’s better than that’. It wasn’t a screamer, it just drifted off.”
The fish took 15 minutes to land and Sam, who baited with 2kg of Mainline Hybrid boilies, needed help to lift it from the water.
“I knew it was at least a forty, but I didn’t know it was the Gurm until the guy in the next swim told me.
“I must admit, it’s taken me more than a while to get the grin off my face. It keeps coming forward in my mind and making me smile.”