We’ve posted a few stories (here and here) in the past about the California Lunker Club and its meager beginnings in 1971 to offer California bass anglers an insurance policy to mount a fish. Not long after that founder Dave Coolidge expanded the CLC into a tournament organization, the first in California, in order to bring like-minded bass anglers together. The concept was friendly competition and also provide a forum to learn from each other and make friends.
The concept took hold and within a couple years the organization grew to a point that Coolidge couldn’t afford it anymore. That’s when Western Bass, formed in 1973, stepped up and took CLC off of Coolidge’s hands.
Because the CLC has such an importance in western fishing history, I thought I’d post the entire original CLC Newsletter from May, 1974 for you to read. It was the first of its kind – all about bass fishing in southern California – and started the era of competitive fishing in the area. Throughout its pages you’ll see names that you recognize on a national level – and some you’ve seen in national magazines but don’t remember.
It was these early anglers who paved the way for the Skeets, Murrays and Monroes. We hope you enjoy the look back.