Illinois teen reels in record-setting northern pike in Boundary Waters

It’s been a big summer for anglers in Minnesota.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources certified a new state catch-and-release record for northern pike. 

Brecken Kobylecky record northern pike resized

Brecken Kobylecky, 15, of Geneva, Illinois caught a 46 1/4-inch on Basswood Lake on June 19.  (Minnesota DNR / FOX 9)

On June 19, Brecken Kobylecky, a 15-year-old boy from Illinois, caught a 46 1/4-inch northern while trolling on Basswood Lake in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness with an Ely-based fishing guide. The teen’s fish bests a previous record for a northern pike of 45 1/4 inches caught on the Rainy River in 2018. 

Todd Kirby muskie resized

Todd Kirby of Hudson, Wisconsin caught a 57 1/4-inch muskie on Lake Vermillion on July 23.  (Minnesota DNR / FOX 9)

The DNR also certified a 57 1/4-inch muskellunge caught on Lake Vermillion by Todd Kirby of Hudson, Wisconsin on July 23, which tied another muskie caught on Lake Vermillion in 2019. 

Kirby had caught a 48-inch fish earlier in the night. When he reeled in his record-tying muskie, he and his fishing partners estimated it to be about 50 inches and were shocked to find it was even longer.