11-pounder was angler’s 25th double-digit bass
He’s been concentrating on catching crappie and catfish for the past decade. But Chris Bullock of Fountain, N.C., proved last week that he’s still got it when it comes to catching bass.
Bullock, once one of eastern North Carolina’s top bass anglers, set up a guide business on Kerr Lake — Kerr Lake Crappie and Cats — about 10 years ago, leaving his bass-fishing roots behind. But long-time fishing buddy, Scooter Lilley of Williamston, N.C., talked him into fishing a tournament trail this summer. Bullock agreed to give it a try.
On Sept. 3, Bullock was practicing for a season-ending tournament this weekend on Jordan Lake. He landed his biggest bass, in, well, a long, long time: an 11-pound giant.
“Scooter talked me into fishing enough tournaments to qualify for the championship on the Bass for Cash circuit that Collins Marine in Smithfield is running,” Bullock said.”So I was practicing down there for the championship. Been catching some good fish. Just hope they’re still there for the tournament.”
Bullock was fishing with a neighbor last Tuesday when he pulled up to the end of an old, flooded roadbed on the floor of the 13,940-acre reservoir.
Big fish fell for a crankbait
“I was on a place I had graphed the week before,” he said. “I had seen a big school on the end of the roadbed where the bridge was blown out. But the week before, they didn’t bite.
“This time, about mid-day, I went back and got lined up, and on the second or third cast, she was there.”
Bullock said the big bass was so heavy that when she tried to jump and shake out the Strike King 5XD crankbait — in sexy shad cool — she couldn’t get airborne.
“She was so big she couldn’t jump all the way out of the water,” he said. “All you could see was her open mouth and her head shaking. You couldn’t even see my crankbait because she had it so deep in her mouth.
“After that, she went straight down, went under the boat and made several surges. I finally got her out from under the boat and she went right in the net.”
Bullock, a former BASS Federation regional champion, said the huge fish pushed to 25 the number of bass he’s caught weighing 10 pounds or better, including one 12-pounder and one 14-pounder.