Orange Beach boat lands potential record blue marlin


When word got around that Orange Beach boat “Best Trait” was headed to Orange Beach Marina with a huge blue marlin on board, a crowd quickly gathered at the marina to watch the weigh-in.

As the 55-foot Viking sportfishing vessel owned by Scott Crump, of Jasper, arrived at the marina, the crowd pushed closer to the dock to get a glimpse of the big fish. Chris Vecsey, tackle salesman at Sam’s Tackle and an accomplished angler, looked at the fish and turned to my buddy Jay Gunn, also a captain with both inshore and offshore experience, and asked, “Do you think that fish will go 1,000 pounds?”

Gunn responded, “That fish will blow 1,000 pounds out of the water.”

Indeed, it did. After a delay to ensure it was weighed on certified scales, the giant blue marlin officially weighed 1,145.6 pounds, a potential Alabama and Gulf of Mexico record. The Best Trait marlin, which was 145 inches long, easily eclipses the Alabama state record of 851.9 pounds caught in 2020 by Ginger Myers. The Gulf record was set in 2002 in Mississippi by Barry Carr at 1,054 pounds. The marlin must go through the certification process by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Marine Resources Division to become an official record.

Scott “Scooter” Anderson, friend of the family, was the angler who reeled in the fish in two hours, but he said it was far from easy.

“It still really hasn’t sunk in yet,” said Anderson, a 32-year-old from Houston, Texas, who said he has been fishing basically his whole life. “The trip really wasn’t going our way. We jumped off two fish, probably in the 500-pound class. The bite had slowed down that afternoon, so we kind of reorganized ourselves for the major (feeding) time that afternoon.”

Unfortunately, a pod of dolphins moved into the area around the rig they were fishing, which prompted Capt.