The aptly named Poorman’s Canyon was the spot where a fisherman recently caught what could be the next world record golden tilefish.
Angelo Ruvio, of Lincoln Park, caught the fish on the 31-foot boat TNG, captained by Jason Kim on Aug. 8. The two other crew members on board were Mike Garone and coincidentally Dennis Muhlenforth, the current holder of the International Game Fish Association all-tackle world record golden tilefish.
Muhlenforth caught his tilefish, a 63.8 pounder, on the party boat Voyager out of Point Pleasant Beach on April 17, 2009.
“He was happy about it now that the target will be off his back,” said Ruvio in regards to one - upping his fishing mate. “Anyone who does this often goes for the big ones. Everyone knows there’s big tiles out there.”
Ruvio, who works for Jigging World, a tackle distributor in Rochelle Park, said he fishes for tilefish as often as he can get time off and the ocean conditions are right.
The crew left out of Ocean City Inlet, Md. and motored southeast about 50 miles to the Poorman’s Canyon, a deep depression on the ocean floor located on the 100 fathom line. There they found a lot of nice sized tilefish biting but got a big surprise when a 65.2-pound tilefish slammed Ruvio’s line as they drifted over grounds 700 feet deep.
“The other guys were all hooked up with tilefish. I was reeling in. I was five to 10 cranks up when this fish came off the bottom, hit and started to strip line off the reel,” Ruvio said.
The conditions were overcast with calm 1- to 2-foot seas. Ruvio was fishing with whole squid on a high-speed Jigging Master model PE8 reel, spooled with Jerry Brown braided line. The fish took between 20 and 25 minutes to land.
“I knew it could be a huge tilefish. It was the hardest fighting tilefish I’ve ever caught,” Ruvio said.
Ruvio now has to wait for the official word from the IGFA on the record. The paperwork has been filed and it could be a couple weeks before he is notified. He said he was not able to have the fish weighed in Maryland for the state record there because they got back to dock too late at night.
The fished was officially weighed at Reel Life Bait and Tackle in Point Pleasant.
Muhlenforth may lose the IGFA record to Ruvio but because Muhlenforth landed his fish in waters off the New Jersey coast he will retain the state record here.