G. SAM PIATT
PDT Outdoors Writer
I am of the opinion that the new state record largemouth bass swims within the confines of 181-acre Greenbo Lake.
I haven’t seen her, but I was down at the dock behind the lodge late one evening not long ago when I saw her wake. She swam under the dock and I distinctly heard her bump her head on the underside.
I’m trying to add a little levity here to an otherwise serious situation. Someone needs to get serious about catching this fish before it dies of old age.
Perhaps, just perhaps, such an event has already happened at least once. Carl Salyers, retired state conservation officer who served Greenup County in that capacity with distinction for many years, once told me, “I was at Greenbo in the mid-1980s when I saw a huge largemouth bass floating on the surface. I rolled up my pants legs and waded out and got it. It was dead. I measured it and it was 28 and ½ inches long.”
Delbert Grizzle’s record 13-pound, 8-ouncer, caught from Greenbo about 9 p.m. on Aug. 3, 1966, was, according to Delbert, 27 and ½ inches long and had a girth of 22 and ½ inches.
That fish stood as the state record for almost 18 years, until April 14, 1984, when Dale Wilson caught one from Woods Creek Lake that weighed 13 pounds, 10.4 ounces.
Grizzle reported he hooked one on Greenbo the same year Wilson caught his that he believed would have gone 15 pounds.
“I had him at the side of the boat with his head out of the water,” he said. “I was reaching behind me with one hand trying to reach the net when the hook tore loose from his mouth. If I had thought to grab that bass quickly by the lower lip, Greenbo would still have the record.”
Could that have been the bass Salyers retrieved? Salyers said he believed it died of natural causes, probably from old age.
“One of its eyes had turned white,” he said.
We don’t mean to take anything away from Wilson’s fish, which was, of course, officially recorded as the new state record by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources Division of Wildlife.
Although it weighed more than Delbert’s, it was apparently smaller in size.
A friend of Grizzle’s, Lon Conley, went to check that fish out after it was mounted. The figures he returned with showed it was 25 and 1/4 inches long and had a girth of 21 and 1/2 inches.
Grizzle wanted to put his August 1966 bass on a stringer and continue fishing. He and Lardy Groves, mayor of Flatwoods who was fishing with him, had just gotten started and planned to fish all night.
But Groves had Grizzle return to the dock immediately. Park Manager Claire Frost, rousted out of his home by Groves, stared wide-eyed as the fish pushed the scales at the dock store down to 13 pounds, 8 ounces.
They wrapped the fish in foil and put it in the freezer, and Grizzle and Groves went back out on the lake to continue an anticlimactic night of fishing.
They picked the fish up at 6 a.m. the next day, took photos, and had it weighed on official store scales, where it registered the same as it had on the boat dock scales.
THE GRAND SLAM
Ohio offers a program recognizing anglers who catch an Ohio River Grand Slam. To qualify, you must catch a hybrid striped bass at least 21 inches long, a sauger at least 16 inches long and a flathead catfish at least 35 inches long.
The fish must be caught from the river or one of its tributaries up to the first dam or riffle.
The program is Internet-based only – no paper forms to fill out or mail in. Simply submit your name, dates of the catches and their sizes, measurement and type of lure used. A photo of each qualifying fish can also be included.
To enter your fish, log on to: http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/Portals/recordfish_fishohio/grandslam/Mail////form.asp.
Ohio also offers a Fish Ohio Pin to those anglers who catch one of 20 different species of fish measuring at least so many inches. Information on that program also available on the ODNR’s website.
Kentucky offers a Trophy Fish/Master Angler award program covering 27 species that measure a particular minimum length. Catching any one of them can qualify an angler for the Trophy Fish award, while three different species of trophy status fish qualify the angler for the Master Angler award.
Complete details are available by calling 1-800-858-1549 or logging onto the Internet at fw.ky.gov.
BEACH CLIFF LODGE
I’ve had a few calls from local fishermen heading for Lake Erie about a place to stay while fishing the Catawba Island/Port Clinton area, a place that’s clean and reasonable.
Beach Cliff Lodge, owned and operated by Phil Whitt, is one good answer. It’s located on the northern tip of Catawba Island, just a block from where the ferry boats debark for South Bass Island/Put-in-Bay.
Beach Cliff is one of the last remaining true fish camps in the Port Clinton area, offering neat, well-kept cabins and a central cleaning station for filleting your walleye for the cooler.
Whitt ran a charter service for about 15 years, but no longer guides. However, he can book his lodge customers with a number of excellent charter boat captains.
For information and rates, call him – or Barb, who will more than likely answer the phone — at (419) 797-4553, or visit www.beach-cliff.com.
“I don’t own a boat now,” Whitt said. “But I highly recommend to my clients, those that trailer their own boats up, that they hire a charter boat for at least the first day of their stay. You gain valuable how-to and where-to information.”
G. SAM PIATT can be reached at (606) 932-3619 or Gsamwriter@aol.com.