The recap on Bassmaster’s visit to Lake St. Clair in 1994 has rehatched quite a few memories for me.
I remember that was the year when Da Greek Yooper mentioned to me Randy VanDam’s record smallmouth bass out of Lake Erie. The record bass was caught a year before the tournament, so all eyes were on Randy’s brother, Kevin VanDam.
In which he turned out to be a very successful pro fisherman, but he did not place first in the 1994 Bassmaster fishing tournament on Lake St. Clair.
The lure that caught Randy VanDam’s record smallmouth bass was the Rattle Snakie. A 1/2 ounce jigging spoon that had a gold prism color to it.
Rand VanDam was fishing the deep breaklines off a glacial, rocky shoal in 24 feet of water when he suddenly felt the bass bite.
The fish broke surface right after setting the hook, it took VanDam around 10 minutes to reel in the monster.
The huge smallmouth bass weighed in at 9 pounds and 8 ounces. It was 23 1/2 inches long and had an amaing girth of 22 inches.
Even though Randy VanDam didn’t have a net, he was still able to land the monster and get a photographed moment of truth. Man that bass is big!
I’m still looking to catch my first five pound smallmouth bass. Even to this day Randy VanDam holds the Ohio state record for smallmouth bass.
I give a lot of credit to Randy, it takes a lot of skill to catch and land a big fish like that. Hopefully his name will stay in the record books forever.