The Star of our show!

Saturday, March 11 was starting out to be another great spring day in Florida. Even though the forecast called for a front to come through later, the morning sun was coming up in a clear sky and the wind had not indicated it had any intentions of blowing the gusts that were forecast.

For E. C. (Doodle-Bug) Dressler and his buddy Bill McConnell life was great. Another good day of fishing on Rodman was starting and the weather was cooperating. E.C. and Bill were in Rodman Reservoir's pool in the floating stump fields above Kirkpatrick Dam trolling shiners. Bill was running the trolling motor trying to navigate between the stumps and hydrilla clumps while E.C. controlled the trolled shiner. It wasn't too long before E.C. hooked the first bass of the day - a measly 9 pounder. Bill McConnell gave E.C. a bad time about the "small" fish. "Is that the best we can do?"

It didn't Take long to rig another shiner and start trolling again. As the boat worked its way through the stumps, E.C. felt a drag on the line like the shiner had gotten snagged in a big bunch of hydrilla. He tugged on the line a little and then gave a jerk. The water exploded and "jaws" emerged. The fight wasn't too hard or long before the bass was alongside and the net was deployed. Bill made a pass with the landing net and missed. (a good way to win a chance to swim home). The second pass with the net secured the big bass and it was hauled into the boat.

The big "sow" bass didn't get weighed until the next day. It took that long to find some scales, but when it was weighed, it weighed 17 pounds 2 ounces. (the Florida State Record was ,at that time, 17 pounds 2.7 ounces). If that big bass had eaten one more shiner it would have been a new record.

The fish was turned over to Glenn Lau of Ocala Florida, an award winning underwater fish cinematographer and producer of wildlife videos. Glenn has a large aquarium in which he keeps live big bass . The bass was on display at Miller's Marine in Ocala for the following Monday and Tuesday.

Not a bad day's fishing, even if it did start out with a Measly 9 pounder.

Unfortunately, The bass did not survive past a few weeks.  It was only six years old and it was hoped its genes could be preserved, but this was not to be.

13 Pound Gallery

Monster Bass

by Sean Rush

Funny how things work out sometimes! I had a customer who had this Saturday and Sunday booked (Jan 15 & 16 2011)that had to back out of the trips due to an illness in the family. My initial plan was to sleep in and get some much needed rest, but when 4:30 am rolled around my internal fishing clock had me lying awake thinking about two large fish that had broken our line on the previous guide party.

Wouldn't you know it! I got up and dragged my son Brice out of bed and headed out for a day of father-son fishing. The morning started off a little slow, but within about 45 minutes the fish were eating it up and we could see that there were some large fish rolling the weeds. We were pretty excited! About an hour in, I had a hell of a thump and set the hook. After a see-saw battle, I landed a beautiful fish that was just a shade over 8.5 lbs! This was a beautiful fish and I was thinking man what a great day and that it couldn't get much better.

Well about 30 minutes later, it did. I had run a medium-large shiner back between two stumps where we had a large fish break us off on the previous trip. After a few moments the line started rolling off the reel. I cranked down with one of my 8' heavy rods and set the hook and could tell that this was a pretty substantial fish. The fight was on! I had to work her out of some pretty nasty stuff that had claimed many a big fish recently, but this time fortunately we were able to coax her out. As she neared the boat my son started yelling "Oh My!!! That's a huge fish!" As she got about 5-6 feet from the boat I could see what he was saying was true!

The fish had massive shoulders on her and a huge belly to boot! I quickly lipped her and looked at Brice and told him I thought she was in the teens. We quickly grabbed my Boga-Grip scale and she pulled the World-Record certified scale to just a hair less than 13lbs. What a hawg! We had lost the battle with this fish on a few previous trips, but were lucky enough to finally get to see her. We took her to a local bait shop to get a few photos and then drove her back to the bridge on HWY 310 and released her back into Rodman to hopefully make another angler's fishing year!

Needless to say the time is now!! The hawgs are getting fired up on Rodman! I am enclosing pics of my son Brice holding both of the big fish of the day!!!

Well if the next time I pick you up to go fishing I have one of my sons with me, after this you'll know why!!..LOL!! Well I had a few days off and with a few trips coming up at the end of the week, I thought man, it was a great day to go and do some scouting and try and locate some big fish! Well my oldest son Kanon attends CFC here in Ocala and I knew he had Tuesdays and Thursdays off, so I called him up and we made plans to go! If you remember last time I sent out one of these e-mails talking about a trip me and my son Brice had on October 7th we boated 19 fish with the 4 largest being 7, 7.5, 9lb 10 oz, and a gorgeous 10 lb 8 oz'er! Well guess what it happened again!!!! We started working an area I was hoping to find some fish in and we were having a really great day. I believe we had about 17 beautiful fish. My son then cast a shiner up to a little point where we had just watched an ENORMOUS boil when POW! A fish slammed into his bait and started to ease the cork back under the weeds! He said "She's got it!", and I said "SET THE HOOK!!!!", he rared back on her and the Shimano Teramar Rod he was using just buckled!!!! He said "Oh My Gosh It's Huge!!!!" He was having trouble moving this fish and then to make matters worse she ran straight to a log and wrapped herself around it!! I told him just to keep pressure on her and he did just that and eased her around that log!!!! Well now I got the first look at her head and knew she was a GIANT!!!! In the course of fighting this fish he brought her over or around at least a half dozen other logs and the Berkley Trilene XT 17 lb mono held like a champ! We got her up to the boat and lipped her! It was only then that I realized how big this fish was! I grabbed the Boga Grip and she pulled it down to 13 lbs!!!! What a beast!!!! And this fish while she had huge shoulders and head, if caught another 2 months from now could have probably easily pushed over the 14 lb. mark. With roe and the way they begin to gorge themselves this time of year, trust me, she had plenty of room to grow!!!!



12 Pound Gallery

11 Pound Gallery

10 Pound Gallery

Less Than 10 Pounds Gallery


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