Toledo Bend Reservoir continued to spit out huge largemouth bass as the calendar flipped from February to March, with two Louisiana anglers boating double-digit fish in the first five days of the new month.
Justin Glover of Zwolle greeted March with an 11.16-pound lunker on the first day of the month, then Luke Billiu of Houma boated a 10.16-pound largemouth on March 5. Both came from the lower end of the huge lake, but that’s where the similarities ended.
Big bass in his pocket, Glover looks to future
Glover, who believes he started what will probably be a parade of big bass to the scales this month, caught the fish a couple of hours after daylight on March 1, “doing nothing special.”
“I was fishing the south end of the lake, just blind-casting in water 8 to 12 feet deep,” he said. “I was up there looking around, seeing if any fish were going to spawn. I’d caught about 15 that morning, some decent fish. I was pitching around some stumps on a stretch where deep water is close to the bank; the creek channel is not far from the bank. I think she’d pulled up on those stumps.
“I was casting a Texas-rigged Senko (black/blue); I got a bite and set the hook. Initially, I thought I had a 7- or 8-pound fish, but when she came out of the water, I knew exactly what I had.
“She had plenty of juice, a big old girl. When I got her in the boat, at first glance, I thought she was a 12, but she wound up 11.16. But I was blessed. This is my third (Toledo Bend) Lunker Program fish, and it’s my best. I’ve fished this lake my whole live, spent a lot of time out there, and catching one of those big fish is a blessing. The stars just lined up for me.”
Landing the fish
Glover said the fish ran around his boat one time, and he thought he might be able to lip her and bring her aboard, but she spoiled his plans by diving under the boat.
“I was worried I’d lose her, but I led her around the boat one more time and grabbed her,” said Glover, who put the fish in his livewell and kept fishing.
“She was on this 20- to 30-yard stretch of wood, and I thought I might get another,” he said.
Once he was satisfied that he wouldn’t be bringing two huge fish to the scales, he packed things up and headed to Fin & Feather, where his fish weighed 11.16, measured 26 inches long and 20 inches in girth.
“This lake’s got the big fish, and they’re starting to start moving up,” Glover said. “This lake is going to be on fire. It seems like we’ve waited two or three years for them. I think the next two weeks, they’re going to flock to the scales with them.”
Billiu’s big bass
Billiu has a camp on Toledo Bend, and he arrived on Saturday, March 4, planning to stay a few days before heading to Lake Fork to fish.
Late Sunday afternoon, he was fishing in the Yocum Bay area, in the back of a creek apparently full of fish.
“I had found some 2- or 3-pounders in there, and I was pitching bushes in 10 inches of water,” Billiu said. “I flipped this one bush three times to get it back to the base of the tree, and when I hit that hole, she blew up. She slammed it as soon as the bait dropped in.”
Not a gator, but a hawg
Billiu was fishing a junebug/red Zoom Brush Hog, Texas-rigged with a 1-ounce tungsten worm weight on a 7-foot-6, heavy action outfit spooled with 65-pound braid.
“I felt a big knock, that 1-ounce weight, and when I set the hook, she came out of the bush, but she was under a branch. I had to work her back over that branch to get her out, and when I did, my buddy (Kevin Prestonback) got her. He actually grabbed the string and flipped her in the boat.
“When I set the hook, the whole bush exploded, and he had yelled, ‘Hey, you’ve got an alligator in there.’”
It wasn’t a gator, but a real hawg, a spawning fish with, as Billiu said, “half her tail missing.” He got a weight on a set of portable scales in his boat; they read 10.06.
“I didn’t want her to lose any weight, so we picked up and ran to my camp,” he said. “We put the boat on the trailer and went to Buckeye (Landing) I called Buckeye and told them I had a 10-pounder, and they were waiting for me. They weighed her at 6:15. She was 10.16 (pounds), 25 3/4 inches long and 19 inches in girth. She didn’t have much girth because she was already laying.”
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