Touring bass pro Tyler Stewart of West Monroe has had a lot of bass fishing highlights in his young career. Another one came Sunday, March 16, when Tyler landed his personal best largemouth bass — a 12.74 pounder. And it came from Bussey Brake Reservoir, just north of Bastrop. Stewart was fishing the shallows looking for spawning bass when he felt a mushy feeling on his black and blue colored Googan Bandito Bug, so he did what all experienced bass anglers do. He set the hook. Nothing happened. Nothing moved. Then, a tug. Stewart had hooked into a 12.74 pound largemouth that is the biggest ever officially weighed and reported on the 2,200 acre lake north of Bastrop. It was also Stewart’s “PB” as they call it — his personal best biggest bass.
“I flipped the Bandito Bug up in a bush and when I picked it up, it was just kind of spongy…mushy,” he says. “When I set the hook, I didn’t even turn her. Then, there was a slight tug. Then a real pull. I knew it was a good one. I had to pull it up over another bush and when it rolled, my fishing partner Matthew Colvin saw it. I reeled a couple of times and told him to get the net. I didn’t have to. He was already standing there with it in his hand because he saw the fish swirl and knew it was a giant right after I hooked it. It was pretty exciting.”
Stewart was fishing in only about two or three feet of water and there wasn’t anything special about the bush he cast into. He said he was just flipping the bushes and dropped it in the right spot. Stewart had the fish weighed on certified scales and returned it to the lake to hopefully use the fish’s genetics to create even more big bass.
Stewart encourages all anglers to practice catch and release with the big bass at Bussey where it can become a top bass fishing lake for years to come.