Take 5: Spirit Lake Walleye

This is not the zombie fish. I did not get a photo before it escaped.

I encountered a zombie on my most recent fishing excursion.

This wasn’t your typical undead shuffling monster from movies and television shows.

I was casting in waders waist-deep at a spot on Big Spirit Lake late into the night when I hooked into something pretty heavy.

I had been catching a walleye maybe every 15 minutes or so and had also inevitably snagged my jigs on some rocks.

So, at first, I figured I just hit another snag — maybe a tree branch or some other piece of debris  but then I could’ve sworn I felt the faintest of tugs on the line.


What could this possibly be?

Was the late hour playing tricks on my mind?

There were a few other folks fishing in the general area, so there wasn’t necessarily a creepy horror movie vibe in the air by any means.

Although occasionally I would feel something brush past my legs.

Not necessarily uncommon  lots of different kinds of fish frequent the area  but still sometimes disconcerting in the dark.

Then I flipped on my headlamp and got my first glimpse of what was on the line.

A bright white eye caught the glare and a wide-open mouth emerged from the murky water a few feet in front of me.

My heart rate quickened for a split second, kind of like when you see a deer sprint across the road just in front of your car.

After that briefest of moments, I quickly realized I had snagged a dead carp.

And just as soon as it appeared, the hook popped free and it slid back into the water.

Or did this zombie fish escape with a subtle twitch of its tail?

Hard to say.

I just kept fishing and tried my best to forget the smirk that seemed to appear as it sank.