Two huge fish break in new Lake Records
You don’t have to convince Allen Gifford, Davis, that now is the
time to be bass fishing in Oklahoma. He already knows, and the 14 lb., 8
oz., largemouth bass he caught Feb. 27 out of
Lake proves it. Not only
that, but the huge bass, along with a hefty 40.1-lb. blue catfish caught out
of Grand Lake the same day are the first record setting fish to be landed
since the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s new Lake Record
Fish Program launched just weeks ago.
Gifford landed his bass in the afternoon using a Terminator
“As soon as I set the hook, I knew it was big,” Gifford said.
“But I didn’t know how big.”
The bass has a girth of nearly 23 inches, is over 25 inches long
and falls just over three ounces shy of the state record that was landed
Illinois resident Denny
Halgren managed to land his
lake record blue catfish with natural bait. The fish was released,
but had a length of 43 inches and a girth of 28.5 inches.
The Lake Record Fish Program was initiated Feb. 1 to recognize
the biggest fish from certain reservoirs and the anglers who catch them.
Currently, thirteen major lakes are included in the pilot program, including
Arbuckle, Broken Bow, Canton, Eufaula,
Ft. Cobb, Grand,
Kaw, Keystone, Sardis,
Skiatook, Tenkiller, Texoma and Thunderbird.
Species eligible for spots in the lake records book include
blue, channel and flathead catfish and largemouth, smallmouth and spotted
bass in addition to crappie, paddlefish, striped bass, striped bass hybrids,
sunfish (combined) walleye/saugeye and white bass. Minimum weights are set
for each species are detailed on the Wildlife Department’s Web site at
“The largemouth bass and blue catfish caught Feb. 27 are
noteworthy catches, and we feel the fish as well as the anglers who caught
them should be recognized,” said Barry Bolton, fisheries chief for the
Wildlife Department. “These are the first record fish actually caught and
certified since the program’s inception, and we couldn’t ask for a better
way to kick of the program than with a bass going over 14 pounds and a nice,
bragging size catfish.”
Anglers who catch a potential record from a participating lake
should contact designated business locations around the lake that are
enrolled as lake record keepers. A listing of official lake record keepers
is available on wildlifedepartment.com.
Once it has been determined that an angler has landed a record
fish, the media is notified and the public will be able to view information
about the catch on the Wildlife Department’s Web site at
An easily-operated search feature is available on the Web site
that allows those interested to view a wealth of lake record fish
information, ranging from the size of record fish caught to what kind of
bait or rod and reel was used to catch them.
All past and current state record fish are registered in the
Lake Record Fish Program as records for their respective lakes.
As for Gifford, whose new lake record largemouth nearly took
state record status, it is not a coincidence that he caught the giant bass
this time of year. According to fisheries biologists with the Oklahoma
Department of Wildlife Conservation, right now through the next month is
among the best time all year for catching big bass.
An avid, lifelong fisherman, Gifford agrees this is the time to
be fishing, as well as into the spring.
“I’ve been catching fish all winter to be honest with you,”
Gifford said. “The fish have got to eat all year long.”
Coming out of colder weather means bass are actively feeding and
putting on weight for spawning, which in turn means they will be found in
shallower waters and may bite more often.
Bass are likely the most sought after game fish in
“This is such a great time to go bass fishing,” said Jeff
Boxrucker, assistant chief of fisheries for the Wildlife Department. “You
can find them all over Oklahoma,
and any angler, whether experienced in bass fishing or not, can catch plenty
of them. But you have to be out there to catch them. Now through the next
few months will be some outstanding fishing.”
For more information about the new Lake
Record Fish Program, or for more on bass fishing in
Oklahoma, log on to
Lake Record Program
What is the
biggest fish you’ve ever caught? A seven-pound largemouth, a
two-pound crappie or a 45-pound blue catfish? While your fish may
not have broken a state record, it could very possibly be the
biggest fish ever caught out of your favorite lake. Now thanks to
new technology and a network of record keepers at 12 lakes around
the state, your next trophy could qualify as a lake record. The
program was established as a way to serve anglers and recognize big
fish and the lakes they come from.
Show me the fish! Follow this link
to find information and photographs of the record fish caught
through this program.
Find a Record Keeper Click here to
find where you can weigh in a potentially new lake record
View Current State Records This
link goes to the current Oklahoma State Records
Become a Record Keeper Follow this
link to find out if you are eligible to become a Lake Record Fish
12 pilot lakes of the program are:
Bow, Canton, Eufaula, Ft. Cobb, Grand, Kaw, Keystone, Sardis,
Skiatook, Tenkiller, Texoma, and Thunderbird.
More will be added later!
qualifying species (and their minimum weights) are:
Channel catfish (15 lbs.)
striped bass (8
(any species) (1 lb.)
FOR FEBRUARY 27, 2008
Draper: Elevation normal, water clear. Crappie good on minnows and jigs at
8-10 ft. around structure. Report submitted by Tony Woodruff, game warden
stationed in Cleveland
Birch: Elevation normal, water lower 40s and clear. Crappie fair on minnows
and jigs at 15-30 ft. around brush piles. Blue catfish fair on cut shad at
30 ft. fishing flats near the creek channels. Report submitted by Spencer
Grace, game warden stationed in
Gibson: Elevation 4 1/2 ft. above normal and
dropping, water 38 and muddy. Catfish good on whole shad and worms in
running water areas, drop-offs and rocky points. Report submitted by Marvin
Stanley, game warden stationed in
Greenleaf: Elevation normal, water clear. Largemouth bass fair on crankbaits
and spinnerbaits along shorelines and brush structure. Catfish fair on cut
baits and stinkbaits on bottom at the spillway. Crappie fair on minnows and
grubs at 12-18 ft. around fishing dock and brush structures. Report
submitted by Lark Wilson, game warden stationed in
Kaw: Elevation 2 ft. above normal, water 40 and murky. Blue catfish good on
cut shad in the Coon and Bear Creek areas. Crappie good on darker colored
jigs, such as chartreuse/black, red/black and blue/black, over manmade brush
piles at 20-30 ft. Report submitted by Tracy Daniel, game warden stationed
Keystone: Elevation 2 1/3 ft. above normal, water murky to muddy. Largemouth
bass fair on chartreuse spinnerbaits, jigs and chunkbaits at 5-10 ft. in
creeks and riprap. Smallmouth bass fair on chartreuse jerk baits, small jigs
and chunk baits at 8-12 ft. near points of coves. Spotted bass fair on small
crankbaits, jigs and chunk baits at 5-10 ft. around bluffs in main lake
pockets. White bass fair on minnows and jigs at 6-12 ft. in creeks. Striped
bass fair on bucktails and shad at 3-6 ft. below dam. Channel catfish fair
on liver and worms at 5-10 ft. in creeks and shallow coves. Blue catfish
fair on cut shad and worms at 8-15 ft. in mid section of deep coves.
Flathead catfish fair on live shad and worms at 10-18 ft. around bluffs and
riprap. Crappie good on blackhead minnows and chartreuse jigs at 8-18 ft. in
shallow creeks and backwaters, deeper water at docks and on lake. Report
submitted by Woody’s Bait and Tackle.
Oologah: Elevation 1 ft. above normal and falling, water 40 and murky.
Crappie fair on minnows and jigs at 15-20 ft. around brush piles and below
dam. Some walleye and striped bass hybrids being caught below the dam.
Report submitted by Brek Henry, game warden stationed in
Pawhuska: Elevation normal and rising, water lower 40s and clear. Trout
excellent on power bait, fair on super dupers and roostertails at 10-20 ft.
Sunfish being caught on small crappie jigs along the dam at 10-15 ft. in
brush piles. Report submitted by Spencer Grace, game warden stationed in
Skiatook: Elevation normal, water lower 40s and clear. Crappie fair on large
minnows along creek channels with standing timber. Report submitted by Paul
Welch, game warden stationed in
Sooner: White bass and striped bass hybrids good in the discharge channel on
rattle traps and sassy shad and in the evening on ghost minnows and topwater
lures. Crappie fair in the lake on minnows and jigs around brush piles in
deep holes. Report submitted by Doug Gottschalk, game warden stationed in
Falls: Elevation 2 ft. above normal, water
murky. Largemouth bass fair on crankbaits and spinnerbaits in creek
channels. Catfish fair on stinkbaits and cut baits on bottom. Crappie fair
on minnows and jigs at 8-18 ft. around brush structures and bridges. Report
submitted by Lark Wilson, game warden stationed in Muskogee County.
Canton: Elevation normal. Crappie good on minnows and jigs along dam near
brush. Channel catfish fair on shad and stinkbait. Report submitted by Mark
Walker, game warden stationed in Blaine County.
Ft. Supply: Elevation above normal, water clear. Crappie fair on jigs and
spinnerbaits at the dam and jetties. Report submitted by Mark Reichenberger,
game warden stationed in Harper County.
Arbuckle: Elevation 1 ft. below normal and rising, water 46 and stained in
creeks and clear on main lake. Crappie good on curly tail jigs near dam at
3-4 ft. White bass being caught along channels in upper arms. Bass slow to
fair on crankbaits, jerk baits and Carolina-rigged jigs. A 14.8-pound
largemouth bass was caught Feb. 27 on a Terminator spinnerbait. Report
submitted by Jack Melton.
Blue River: Elevation normal, water 48 and clear. Bass fair on minnows and
flies. Catfish fair on liver and worms. Trout good on power bait, super
dupers, roostertails and mealworms. Report submitted by Charles Baker,
technician at the Blue River Public Fishing and Hunting Area.
Broken Bow: Elevation rising, water 49 and murky. Largemouth bass fair on
spoons and deep running crankbaits around islands and off points. Catfish
good on juglines and trotlines baited with cut bait. Crappie fair on minnows
or jigs around structure in the upper end of the lake. Walleye good in the
upper end of the lake staging at 40-45 ft. on deep running crankbaits.
Report submitted by Dru Polk, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.
Eufaula: Elevation 1/2 ft. above normal, water clear. Largemouth bass slow.
White bass slow. Blue catfish fair on fresh shad drifting deeper flats.
Crappie fair on minnows at 8-15 ft. in riprap at I-40 and under docks with
brush at 10-20 ft. Report submitted by Ed Rodebush, game warden stationed in
Hugo: Water 48 and murky. Crappie good to excellent on cork and jig at 8 ft.
below the dam and fair in the lake on minnows and jigs. Channel catfish good
on whole shad below the dam, small-sized shad work best fished on bottom and
fair in the lake on cut shad. Report submitted by Joe Young, game warden
stationed in Atoka County.
Konawa: Elevation normal, water 50 and clear. Largemouth bass good on
plastic worms at 5-8 ft. around points and road beds. White bass good on
jigs and shad at 15 ft. in discharge canal. Report submitted by Daryl Howser,
game warden stationed in Seminole County.
Lower Mountain Fork River: Trout good. Report submitted by Beavers Bend Fly
McGee Creek: Elevation 2 ft. above normal, water 47 and murky. Largemouth
bass fair on soft plastic lures and jig and pig at 16-30 ft. over submerged
humps. Crappie fair on minnows at 16-25 ft. over cedar brush. Report
submitted by Larry Luman, game warden stationed in Atoka County.
Pine Creek: Elevation above normal, water murky. Bass fair on red
shad-colored soft plastic lures and red/gold-bladed spinnerbaits. Crappie
fair on minnows. Catfish good on beef blood magic bait. Report submitted by
Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.
Robert S Kerr: Elevation normal, water 46 and clear. Largemouth bass slow on
plastic baits and jigs at 6-8 ft. around rock and woody structure next to
deep water. Crappie fair on minnows at 10 ft. along the edge of the old
creek channels in the Big Sans Bios, Dirty and Sallisaw Creek areas. White
bass slow on jigs at 10 ft. below Webbers Falls dam. Blue catfish good on
fresh cut bait at 5-15 ft. along the windy shorelines. Sauger fair bouncing
minnows and jigs off the bottom below Webbers Falls on the east side. Report
submitted by Rick Olzawski, game warden stationed in Haskell County.
Sardis: Bass good to fair on plastics around points and mouths of creek
channels and around rip raft. Crappie good off of Jack Fork bridge with
minnows. Catfish good on cut bait fishing deep on flats near creek channels.
White bass fair around mouths on creek channels or if schools of shad can be
located. Walleye slow to fair on warmer days around islands and riprap.
Report submitted by Allen Couch, game warden stationed in Pushmataha County.
Texoma: Elevation 1 ft. below normal, water 48 and clear. Striped bass fair
on live bait at 10-15 ft. near the islands. Channel and blue catfish fair on
live bait at 10-20 ft. at Platter Flats. Report submitted by Danny Club,
game warden stationed in Bryan County.
Wister: Elevation 10 1/2 ft. above normal, water murky. Largemouth bass fair
to good on soft plastic baits. Crappie good on minnows and jigs below dam.
Channel and blue catfish good on cut shad. Report submitted by Randy
Fennell, game warden stationed in LeFlore County.
Altus-Lugert: Elevation 4 9/10 ft. below normal and rising. Crappie slow.
Walleye slow. Trout very good on corn in river. Report submitted by Sue
Hokanson, Quartz Mountain State Park.
Ellsworth: Elevation above normal. Crappie good on minnows and jigs at
Ralph’s Resort. Catfish fair on cut bait off rocky points. Report submitted
by Mike Carroll, game warden stationed in Comanche County.
Foss: Elevation 7 in. below normal, water 44 and clear. Hybrid striped bass
slow on slabs. Walleye slow on live bait. Crappie fair on small jigs.
Catfish good on stinkbaits. Report submitted by Eric Puyear, B and K Bait
Lawtonka: Elevation normal. Crappie good on minnows off the dam. Report
submitted by Mike Carroll, game warden stationed in Comanche County.
Wintertime Striper Fishing
Striper of 2008
She is an avid fisherperson and fishes year round, Angella's favorite is
Lake Eufaula and the Lower Illinois River. She is like Okiefish, where ever
her travels take her, she fishes. This picture from a trip to Cozumel,
Mexico. When the fish are biting and where ever, you'll most likely find
Angella close by.