The new California state record spotted bass is only one ounce shy of the world record.
Tim Little's self professed "obsession" finally paid off as last month he caught the new California state record spotted bass. The monster bass weighed in at 10 pounds, 6 ounces, with a 24.25-inch length and a 20-inch girth. The fish came out of the New Bullards Bar Reservoir in Yuba County.
Little and his fishing partner Matt Allen, worked hard for the fish, putting in a lot of hours, sleeping on the boat and in their truck. Little made sure to thank his wife "for putting up with me, all the long, long days, and the obsession." A weary but happy and grateful Little declares on the video that he is, "Truly blessed."
Little is described as a finesse angler, who is skilled at producing limit catches of big fish. Allen claims to have caught more than 55 bass (all species) heavier than 10 pounds. His largest to date is a 17.2-pound largemouth that he caught in February, 2005, in California's Rancho Seco Lake. The two anglers work as an efficient bass tournament team, and Little's record spotted bass is evidence of their effectiveness.
Little's fish beat the previous California state record by two ounces, a record that stood unchallenged since 2001. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife confirmed Little's record just a few days ago. His bass is also only one ounce shy of the current all tackle spotted bass IGFA world record, although another giant spotted bass was caught last February in the same reservoir and tipped the scale at 10.95 pounds. That fish is apparently still under IGFA consideration.
Allen, who also served as a witness for Little's record fish, watched the big bass on the boat's graph as it headed to deep water immediately after its release, before heading up and suspending at 20 feet. "It's pretty awesome when you let these fish go," Allen said. "If you've got your graphs on, you can actually watch and see what they're doing, and see that those fish are really okay before you leave them. Make sure that they're not coming back up to the surface. So that monster - 10.38 pounder - is headed home, doing good."
Bullards Bar Reservoir has been hailed by a number of hardcore bass anglers as the best spotted bass fishery in the world, and Little admits that he won't be surprised if his record doesn't get surpassed sooner than later, possibly even by the same fish he caught, as he released the big bass after measuring and weighing it.