On September 11, Bruce Kraemer of Treasure Island, Florida, was dunking worms off of the seawall behind his cottage on Indian River in northern Michigan. When he felt a tug at the line, he thought a gobie (invasive fish species) had taken his bait into the weeds. After some additional tugs followed by a strong run of line, he knew he had a much bigger problem.....or was it a problem?

Kramer, originally from Cincinnati, has been fishing Michigan waters since 1965. His cottage, located on Indian river, has been the site of many a day with his neighbor Ron Krieg, fishing and enjoying conversation for years. This time, the conversation would turn into a battle with a new State record smallmouth bass.

The previous record was broken in October of 2015 by Greg Gasiciel of Rhodes, MI. A record that had stood for over 106 years prior.

In an interview with Kraemer, he told me that he was just using night crawlers on a number 4 hook when the monster attacked! Several long runs of line flying off of the spool, a fifteen minute fight ensued with the fight ending in the capable net of Bruce's friend Ron Krieg. The official weigh in measures the behemoth at 23.10 inches and a whopping 9.98 pounds!

The fish is now at the taxidermists and the new record is ready to be broken!

Photo/MI DNR