Eric Files, Sr. was fishing for sunfish in West Virginia’s Berkeley County on April 30, but what he ended up with was a 19.40-pound, 33.11-inch state record rainbow trout. The fish has now been confirmed by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR) to be the largest rainbow trout caught in the state so far.
Files’ fish beat both the old records for the length and weight, besting a 17.31-pound trout caught by Tony Corbin in 2013 and a 31.7-inch fish landed by John P. Arnett in 1993. Rainbow trout can be found in most of West Virginia’s public lakes, reservoir tailwaters, and small- to medium-sized streams.
According to the International Game Fish Association, the all-tackle world record for rainbow trout stands at 48 pounds. That fish was caught by Sean Konrad in Canada’s Lake Diefenbaker.
Image courtesy West Virginia Division of Natural Resources