Andres Aguilar, his kid brother Austin and their dad Freddy were quietly sitting in their small aluminum boat on the dark and murky water in the back of Lake Findley in Alice early Tuesday morning.

Armed with heavy tackle and 30-pound test line and using cut-up perch as bait, they were fishing for a monster like some of the others they’ve caught here before. However for some two hours, nothing — no bites, no nibbles… just stillness.

Suddenly, one of the extra rods they had in the water started dipping. The boys’ dad picked up the rod and instinctively pulled back to set the hook. Just like that, it was “fish on.” However, it was immediately obvious that this was no ordinary fish on the other end of the line. This fish was a giant.

Their dad fought the fish for some 35 minutes, all the while being careful not to pop the fishing line. Andrew, 15, took over and battled for about another 35 minutes. Finally as they neared land, 12-year-old Austin reeled in the fish for about 25 minutes. The eventually were able to haul in the massive fish and it was only then that they began to marvel in its size. The alligator gar measured six-and-half feet in length.

The thick and heavy fish with mouths full of sharp teeth are notorious for being fierce fighters in the water. Plenty of anglers who get to the back of Lake Findley tell of big alligator gars there.

For Andres, his brother and dad, the big fish they caught Tuesday beat their personal record by two inches.

“All we were thinking the whole time was to land the fish and hopefully the line wouldn’t bust,” Andres said.

Unfortunately, the alligator gar wasn’t weighed since they didn’t have a scale big enough for the task. The fish didn’t go to waste though. It was cleaned and filleted for a later fish fry.