Monster Fishing

large-3DSG President Tom Rosendahl saw an opportunity and took it. An avid fisherman and hunter, he was headed for a family wedding in Florida and while he was there, he had a lead on the outdoor adventure of a lifetime – an alligator hunt. The father of five sons and one daughter, Rosendahl was always on the lookout for a new experience to share, and this one was just too good to pass up.

In Florida, Rosendahl and two of his sons (including Jase Rosendahl, who currently works at DSG in Bismarck, ND) met the guide at 5 a.m. at a local lake. The guide scoured the water’s surface with a pair of binoculars, watching closely for signs of a gator. It didn’t take long for him to spot a large one, and in moments, the men were speeding across the lake to the spot where the gator had submerged.

thumbnail-1Snatch hooks were quickly deployed to catch hold of the monster. Soon the alligator was fighting several of the hooks, designed not to kill the animal, but merely to wear it down. Indeed, the gator proceeded to pull the boat with the men inside.

Once the alligator was close enough to the boat, the hunters used a bangstick to shoot it under the water. Enraged, the animal swam away with primal energy, held back only by the men and their hooks. The next time the gator approached the boat, it lunged at the hunters with its huge jaws.

“It was incredible,” Tom Rosendahl remembers. “As he rocked the boat, it was terrifying and exciting at the same time.”

Undeterred, the men used the bangstick again and again. In total, the monster took five high-caliber shots before it was weak enough to be restrained. The guide expertly used duct tape to secure the beast’s mouth, and before long, the 10.5-foot alligator (who was missing a few feet of his tail – likely from a dispute with another gator) was on the shore. The guide estimated the giant’s weight to be more than 650 pounds, a trophy by any estimation.

The men brought home meat and the gator’s jaws, a reminder of a unique adventure shared by a father and his sons in the dangerous waters of Florida’s wilderness. “I’m glad we went,” says Tom Rosendahl. “We’re going to remember that for the rest of our lives.”