Fishing & Boating News

Local Angler weighs in 13.06 lb. Bass in Honey Hole tournament... One small problem-he wasn't entered!

by: Gordon Krantz,

(Monday, May 17,1999 - Lake Fork, TX) Widgeon Emerson of Quitman, a Lake Fork Crappie guide noticed that a Big Bass tournament was being held Sunday, May 16th, as he launched his boat to do some crappie fishing at the 2946 bridge near Axton's Marina.  Intent on putting some crappie in the cooler, Emerson didn't give it another thought, until around noon.   At 11:55 AM, while fishing a small crappie jig on ultralight 6 lb. test line, he hooked a fish that put his angling skills to the supreme test.

 Following a 20 minute battle which saw the giant fish wrap his line around bridge pilings on several occasions, Emerson landed a large Bass which he immediately placed in his livewell and raced approximately 600 yards to the Honey Hole weigh-in site to see what she actually weighed.  According to Debra Dean with Honey Hole, the giant female weighed 13.06 lbs. on certified scales, and probably would have been over 15 lbs had she not recently completed spawning.

The lucky angler, Widgeon Emerson had to endure a lot of good natured kidding for not having entered the tournament which would have brought him a healthy paycheck due to the weight of the large fish.   

According to Mr. Emerson, his first thought was to donate her to the TFFC in Athens, but since she had already spawned, and the Bud Sharelunker program ended April 30th, he made the decision to release the big fish back into Lake Fork.  Following a brief photo session, Emerson  waded into the lake, and carefully released the big fish, and watched proudly as she swam away, obviously glad to be free again.

Honey Hole officials are to be commended for helping Mr. Emerson weigh the fish and provide an aerated holding tank to keep her healthy until she was released.  Fish of this size are very susceptible to stress and injury, and Mr. Emerson, an accomplished angler and Honey Hole officials took every precaution to guarantee that the large fish was not harmed in any way.   Congratulations to Widgeon on a great catch that could have been even greater had he entered the tournament.