This Month In Bass Fishing History – October

Another month, another quick look at what went down in bass fishing history. Let’s begin…

Guntersville20 YRS AGO: Built between 1936 and 1939, Guntersville Lake is Alabama’s largest reservoir with waters covering 67,900 acres and 890 shoreline miles. It is also a big bass factory, as well as the site of the upcoming Bassmaster Classic to be held next February. Part of what makes the lake such a great fishery is arguably its fertility as well as its hydrilla and milfoil beds. However, another reason might be the fact that on October 1, 1993, a 15-inch size limit was placed on bass in the lake. That early size limit allowed for smaller, faster growing bass to reach quality size.

Photo Bassmaster.com

Photo Bassmaster.com

25 YRS AGO: Our own Pete Robbins just covered the subject of Gary Klein’s win at the Arkansas Invitational back on Oct 12-14, 1988 at Bull Shoals Lake, AR. Gary weighed 30-00 pounds of bass to take the event, but did so by “doodling” a small Iovino worm to depths of 45 feet and more. If you haven’t read the details, check them out at http://bassfishingarchives.com/petes-box-score/monday-trivia-the-anti-bubba-answer-and-winner-october-14-2013.

Ken Cook, FishPAA.com

Ken Cook, FishPAA.com

30 YRS AGO: It wasn’t Ken Cook’s first win, but it was won using his “special” lure, the Golden Eagle spinner bait plated with 24-karat gold to give it more flash in the water. Cook won the Missouri Invitational held Oct. 05-07, 1983, on Truman Reservoir in Missouri. Ken was 36-years-old at the time and had already quit his former job as a biologist with the Oklahoma Division of Wildlife. Cook, of Meers, OK received $10,000 and an $18,000 Ranger bass boat for winning the tournament.

Tommy Martin 74 Classic Winner35 YRS AGO: It was Bobby Murray who won the Bassmaster Classic held Oct. 25-27, 1978, on Ross Barnett Reservoir. However, a more interesting look at a couple of the other competitiors was recently featured on the Bassmaster website. Thirty-five years ago this week Roland Martin and Tommy Martin competed on Ross Barnett Reservoir for the first time in that Classic. They returned to the lake this month for the Bass Pro Shops Central Open #3. From the website story; “Both anglers agree one constant remains on the lake locally known as ‘the Rez.’   The plastic frog still catches largemouth just as it did in 1978. That’s when the two legendary bass fishermen came here for the Bassmaster Classic. That year Bobby Murray won Classic VIII with a three-day total of 37 pounds, 9 ounces. Tommy Martin was fifth and Roland Martin took 10th place.” Check out the link for the full article on that history.

12 Rayo Breckenridge40 YRS AGO: B.A.S.S. has only visited Clarks Hill Reservoir 4 times over their 45 year history. Most recently that was in 2005. Previous to that, you have to go back to the 1974 All-American and the 1975 Federation Nation Championship. However, the first time they EVER visited the lake was 40 years ago this month when they held the Miller High Life Classic Oct 24-26, 1973, on Clarks Hill Reservoir, GA. The winner, Rayo Breckenridge, tallied 52-08 pounds of bass in that event over 3 days.

Bill Dance and Roland Martin awaiting the 1970 Angler of the Year determination. Photo January/February issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

Bill Dance (right)

45 YRS AGO: Technically it was Bill Dance’s second B.A.S.S. win when he captured the title at the All-American held Oct 03-05, 1968 on Sam Rayburn Reservoir, TX.  It was the first BASS visit to the lake, and only the 6th official event they ever held as an organization. Over the years it has become a regular Tour stop at some level of competition on the trail.

Cus and Mike Tyson: dailymail.co.uk

Cus and Mike Tyson: dailymail.co.uk

50 YRS AGO: Many people might recognize the name Cus D’Amato. He was a boxing manager and trainer who handled the careers of such Hall of Famers as Mike Tyson, Floyd Patterson, and José Torres. What you might not realize is that he was addicted to bass fishing. In the October 21, 1963 issue of Sports Illustrated, there was an article titled, ‘I Am A Bit Of A Fanatic’, detailing his love of the sport and some of his odd quirks, like talking to the fish. You definitely need to check out this historic piece by writer Robert H. Boyle at the following link: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1075289/index.htm.