Trophy Hunters: Aaron Rubel | Kayak Angler Magazine | Rapid Media
Skills
Aaron Rubel poses with a fish he caught on a fly line. Photo: Aaron Rubel

Kayak Angler's Trophy Hunter series looks at five anglers who target the biggest fish and the toughest catches

What is a trophy?

I’m an engineer, so I’m suspect of absolutes. I once calculated the average accepted trophy length compared to the longest fish caught on public record within those species. The minimum length to term trophy class for some of the more common species came out between 75 to 85 percent of longest ever caught, compared to 55 to 65 percent for the more uncommon ones. So, if I were asked to define a trophy catch, I’d have to say the minimum length that would be acceptable among fishing circles is around the sixty-fifth percentile of the largest caught on record for most species, with some of the more common species pushing into the eightieth percentile.

Toughest accomplishment?

Learning to be successful in saltwater flyfishing from a kayak. Fishing saltwater and estuaries can be very challenging, but beautiful and rewarding too.

Favorite fish story?

A few years ago, I made it a goal to win a big saltwater kayak fishing tournament, but I wanted to do it on the fly against others using conventional tackle. I have found fly fishing to be an extremely effective way to target big fish. In the Mobile Bay Kayak Fishing Association Five Rivers Tournament winds were blowing 35 all day. Early that morning, I fooled a 23.5-inch speckled sea trout on a popper fly. I won the tournament against 75 other anglers using...

 

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