Four fisheries compared

This is undoubtedly the golden age of smallmouth bass fishing in the Great Lakes region of the U.S. For bass fishing in general, whether smallmouth or largemouth, the region can match any other area of the country.

For a glimpse of that quality, the following are the Day 1 totals from the last three stops on the Elite Series and Texas’ Sam Rayburn Reservoir, which established the previous high marks overall for the season.

This isn’t intended to be a definitive statement about which fishery is better than another, or which region is better than another. It’s just a glimpse at some high quality bass fisheries:

St. Lawrence Champlain St. Clair Sam Rayburn
Total bass weighed-in 537 539 518 544
Total weight 1,855-1 1,732-12 1,781-12 1,725-0
Average weight per bass 3.45 lbs. 3.21 lbs. 3.44 lbs. 3.17 lbs.
Big bass 6-1 6-1 6-8 9-1
Limits caught 105  10797 108
Bags of 20 lbs. or more 20 15 18
Bags of 18 lbs. or more 50 50 45 29
Bags of 14 lbs. or more 91 88 87 74
Bags of 12 lbs. or more 99 105 96 91