CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — It was a typical Saturday for Manuel Vargas Jr., his father Manuel Vargas Sr., and his uncle Hector Vargas.
"We set up our pole and everything," said Manuel Vargas Jr., "And out of nowhere, around 12:30 in the morning, my dad got a run."
After sitting outside for hours, waiting for their first catch, it happened. They caught a giant alligator gar.
"When my dad got the run," said Vargas Jr., "He had a chance to set the hook. He fought it because usually on an alligator gar, you let them run. They stop and once they run again, that's when you set the hook."
The gar was so big, it measured a little more than 7'8". It is considered the largest alligator gar ever caught in Lake Corpus Christi. The last record was from 2022, when two fishermen in Toldeo Bend caught a gar a little smaller.
In honor of catching his first alligator gar, Manuel Vargas Jr. was gifted a gar pin from his father to put on his fishing hat.
The group says they participate in fishing competitions and hope to beat their own record in the future.
"We're always competing with ourselves," Hector said, "Gar season is barely beginning. It's coming up again, you never know what's on the end of that line."
Now that they've gotten the biggest alligator gar that they've ever caught before, this group of fishermen say they're ready to hit the waters again this weekend to catch more.
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