PORT ARANSAS, Texas – Take a look at the one that didn't get away – but definitely tried.
An exhausted Captain Tim Oestreich shows off his fishing pole, snapped in two by the beast of a fish lying below him.
The 676-pound bluefin tuna battled all 16 anglers plus the five-person crew aboard the Dolphin Express charter fishing boat on March 24th. Each had to take turns during the two-hour tug-of-war to land the fish. Oestreich told Sport Fishing Magazine that some people would last only 2 to 3 minutes before they tired out.
"When one angler was done, I would call for ‘fresh meat on the reel,’" he told Sport Fishing.
The captain said the bait was only in the water for 10 minutes before the bluefin bit. Then the big fish dove and took 800 yards of line with it.
"That's almost half a mile straight down in about a minute," Osetreich explained to Sport Fishing.
Forty-five minutes later, the fishermen had reeled the fish back near the boat, but again, the tuna took off.
The captain tried to keep the fish moving to tire it out. The boat followed the running tuna for about 2.5 miles. After 45 minutes, the fish was again next to the boat. The surprise came when the fish took off again, snapping the rod in two.
Osetreich grabbed what was left of the rod and pulled the fish in by hand for 40 feet. He said it took 8 guys to lift the fish out of the water and into the boat.
In the 4.5-day trip, the anglers also caught three yellowtail tuna each and 11 wahoo fish.
"When my arm recovers, I'd love to go again..... soon as I find a bigger freezer," wrote the guest on Facebook.
A different Port Aransas boat caught a 750-pound bluefin just a few days later.