One cold December day in 1968, while I was fishing at Lake Eufaula, Ala., I met Mr. Tom Scott at Chewalla Marina. He was in an 18-foot Skeeter boat with a 70-horsepower — the biggest boat and motor I had ever seen. I knew him from his days as a student at Auburn University; I was just a kid, and he and a cousin of mine used to take me squirrel hunting.
When BASS got started, my fishing was mostly on Chickamauga and Nickajack lakes in 1967. Fishing was very good on all these lakes, and it got much better in the early 1970s with the arrival of aquatic vegetation.
Wayne Barksdale became a Charter Member of BASS in 1969, and is still a member to this day.
First, let me say that you that I turned 81 years old this past Christmas Day and there are a lot of things I may not remember. I was given a certificate as a charter member of BASS in 1968.
The phone call I received early one evening in 1967 remains etched in my memory. The voice on the other end said, "I'm Ray Scott. Your name was given to me by W.A. Bill Cox Jr. He said you worked with him on a spotted bass article. I'm hoping you'll be able to help me. I recently organized a bass tournament that was held on Beaver Lake in Arkansas. The tournament was a success and I am excited!"
In the mid-'60s, I fished from the bank, or a small aluminum johnboat, mostly small ponds and lakes close to home. I fished with minnows some when I was a kid.
I had been fishing for a lot of years before BASS came along. I read about it in Field & Stream magazine, and I said, "I gotta get in on that. Anything that had to do with fishing, I wanted to be part of it."
When BASS was founded, it sounded like a good thing to me, so I joined. Ray Scott and BASS taught us how to have tournaments. There was a lot of cheating in those days. There'd be "runaway tournaments" ; you'd go get your check and find out they were bankrupt.
The Story of how one bass caught in 1969 changes a man's future.
COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho — Temperatures swung upwards more than 30 degrees between practice and the first day of the BASS Federation Nation Western Divisional on Coeur d'Alene Lake, but anglers still managed to drop 10 stringers over 20 pounds onto the scales. After the first day's weigh-in concluded on May 14, Arizona's Murray White was leading the board with 23 pounds, 2 ounces.