O.H. Ivie: 8 record bass in 7 days!

Bill Hancock
Runnels County Register

RUNNELS COUNTY, TX - You might be thinking of fishing at lake O.H. Ivie in the near future. If you plan on hitting the water, get to the boat ramp early. On February 27 there wasn't a space left, on or off the pavement, to park your truck and trailer by the time the sun broke the horizon.

Spring fever is bad enough on its own. For anglers, that fever went up a few degrees when 3 large smallmouth and 5 largemouth bass were caught on Lake O.H. Ivie in 7 days. Not only were 5 legacy largemouth caught, but the lake also yielded 3 record Smallmouth bass! One of those smallmouth is believed to have been caught twice. If that doesn't get you chomping at the bit to take the cover off the boat and head to the water, nothing will!

After a record-setting blizzard struck Texas earlier this month, people with cabin fever and spring fever hit the lakes with acutes cases of bass fever! Anglers needed a diversion from the insanity of the last 15 months since COVID and social unrest struck the nation and a record setting blizzard enveloped the state. If you were on lake O.H. Ivie, you likely found the exciting diversion that you were seeking.

O.H. Ivie produced the fifth Legacy Class ShareLunker of the 2021 season with this 16.40lbs tank caught by angler Joe McKay of Bussey, IA!

The fishing fever began on February 19 when Joe McKay of Bussey, Iowa landed a 16.40 pounder! That fish isn't only the new state record, it's the 16th heaviest Texas largemouth of all time. It's been reported that fish is the largest largemouth reported in the state in 22 years.

The fishing frenzy was only getting started!

TPWD: "O.H. Ivie is on a roll! Could this be another year like 2010? Congratulations to Josh Jones for his contribution of 13.20lbs."

On February 21, Josh Jones of Sapulpa, Oklahoma landed a 13.20 pound largemouth. That fish was followed up by Donald Burks of Weatherford on February 23 when he reeled in a 14.4 pound lake monster. It was a scant 2 days later, on February 25 when Lake O.H. Ivie said, "hold my beer." That was the day that TWO largemouth beasts were caught by anglers, Brett Cannon of Willis -14.4 pounder, and Casey Sobcak of Spring - 14.2 pounds.

Casey Sobczak of Spring TX caught this 14.2 lbs Largemouth Bass from lake O.H. Ivie. Another angler caught a 14 lbs bass on the same day.
An O.H. Ivie monster! A 14.4lbs) caught by Brett Cannon of Willis, TX. Cannon caught his "bucketmout" on the same day another angler landed a 14+lbs bass.

The magic of February included hundreds of largemouth in the 12 lbs range being landed. Donald Burks' son, Brandon Burks, landed a 12.4 pound largemouth on the same day that his father landed the 14.4 pound monster.

From Texas Parks and Wildlife: O.H. Ivie is at it again with another ShareLunker! Donald Burks 13.40 pound Lunker makes the 3rd Legacy class bass in the past 5 days from Ivie! Amazing! Congratulations, Donald and thank you for your contribution to bigger better bass in Texas!

Not only were largemouth bass being landed hand over fist, smallmouth bass joined in the fray. Between February 20-24, the lake's smallmouth record was broken 3 times, including the fish that is thought to have been caught twice.

The smallmouth fun was kicked off on February 20 with a 6.25 pounder landed by Joey Wynn. On February 22, Ben Milliken boated a 6.6 pound smallie. On February 24, Luke Dunkin boated a 6.8 pound smallmouth.

Overall, from February 19-25, there were 5 legacy largemouth caught, as well as 3 record smallmouth.

Feb. 19, largemouth - 16.4 lbs; Feb. 20, smallmouth - 6.25 lbs; Feb. 21, largemouth - 13.2 lbs; Feb. 22, smallmouth 6.6 lbs; Feb. 23, largemouth 14.4 lbs; Feb. 24, smallmouth 6.8 lbs; Feb. 25, largemouth - 14.4 lbs and largemouth 14.2 lbs.

The five ‘Ivie Legacy fish" bring the 2021 Toyota ShareLunker season total to 10 as of Feb. 26.

It's time to spool on new fishing line, grease the fishing reels, test the boat motor, and binge shop for lures!

The Toyota ShareLunker program is a partnership with Texas Parks & Wildife. Anglers who reel in any largemouth bass at least 8 lbs. or 24 inches can participate simply by entering their lunker catch information. Complete Entry Requirements online or in the new ShareLunker mobile app during the year-long season (January 1 through December 31).

All confirmed ShareLunker participants will receive a Catch Kit corresponding to their fish’s weight class. Each Catch Kit includes an achievement decal, merchandise and other giveaways. Plus, everyone who enters will be included in a grand prize drawing to win a $5,000 shopping spree and other prizes! And, anglers who donate their 13 lb. or larger bass for spawning will be entered in an additional drawing to win a $5,000 shopping spree, VIP access and awards programming at the 2020 Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest and other prizes. See official rules for both drawings.