Lake Charles angler catches previously tagged 10-pounder in Toledo Bend

Fish once again qualifies for Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program

Chris Berzas
July 10, 2013 at 8:30 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

Brian LeBaron of Lake Charles displays the 10.04-pound bass he caught on July 5 at Toledo Bend. The bass, which had been previously caught and released this spring, again qualified for the Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program.
Brian LeBaron of Lake Charles displays the 10.04-pound bass he caught on July 5 at Toledo Bend. The bass, which had been previously caught and released this spring, again qualified for the Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program.
Photo courtesy of Toledo Bend Town and Tackle
Admittedly, Brian LeBaron was not intent on catching largemouths on Friday, July 5.

Instead, the 49- year-old angler from Lake Charles had his mind focused on catching a few Kentucky (spotted) bass in some choice sweet spots in Toledo Bend waters.

But as fishing stories go, this time he got a lot more than he bargained for.

At safe daylight, he headed out from Cypress Bend Marina and motored south, but when he  arrived at his GPS waypoints, he observed another boat in the area.

“It was my brother,” LeBaron said. “And at first he didn’t see me pull up near the Tennessee flats. He finally turned around and saw me, and then he kept on fishing.”

He started fishing the first two waypoints, and a little later his brother made his way over to LeBaron’s boat.

“He asked me if I was catching,” the angler said. “I told him just a few ‘little bitties’ I threw back.”

LeBaron was fishing with a Zoom French Fry type bait on a Carolina rig in 16 feet of water when suddenly he became hooked onto something that didn’t budge.

“I trolled over there and worked it off,” he said.

On his next cast, he felt a bite and set the hook.

“It was moving, but I thought it was a catfish at first,” he said.“The fish just started running and then came up. When it jumped out the water and I saw it was a bass, I got nervous. I kept the line tight and the fish down in the water.”

The bass worked its way under and into both of LeBaron’s motors.

“I whistled to my brother in order for him to bring a net because I didn’t have one,” said LeBaron. “He just kept on fishing.”

So he worked the fish and let it wear itself down.

“I had to lip the bass to get him in the boat,” he said.

Noticing that it had been previously tagged by the Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program, the angler made the decision to return to the landing and trailer his boat. Then he made his way over to Toledo Town and Tackle to weigh the fish for possible re-entry into the program.

LeBaron’s bass tipped the scales at 10.04 pounds. He was told the original tag revealed that the bass had been previously caught by Lou Wilkerson on March 11 and weighed 10.92 pounds at that time.

The Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program of the Toledo Bend Lake Association offers free replicas to anglers catching double-digit bass if they allow the fish to be released.

“Since we handed out the 57 replicas on May 19th, we have had 7 more bass over 10 pounds taken out of Toledo Bend,” said Dinah Medine, with the Toledo Bend Lake Association.

To keep up with more reports of monsters enrolled in the Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program, click here.






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