Down to his last bait at Central California’s O’Neill Forebay, Ualat hooked this mammoth 70-pound, 6-ounce striped bass.
The enormous fish measured 52.5 inches long and had a 36-inch girth and was caught on a pileworm fished on an 11-foot G. Loomis Surf Series spinning rod and a Team Daiwa Advantage 4000 reel spooled up with 50-pound braid.
But that’s not the whole story…
After catching the fish, Ualat packed the fish in ice — in his bathtub — overnight and then took it to Coyote Bait & Tackle where it was weighed on an uncertified scale and photographed. At 70 pounds, 6 ounces, the fish is larger than the current state record of 67-8, taken in 1992 by Hank Ferguson of Merced — at the same lake.
Though the scale has been sent in for official certification, there’s some doubt that Ualat’s fish will be recognized as a state or IGFA line class record beecause the evidence is gone. Ualat ate the fish….