Video and Interview from Ross Robertson at BigWater Fishing
We got reports early this afternoon, Nov. 3, 2022, of a 10-pound smallmouth bass being caught in Ontario on Lake Erie. Ross Robertson called us and confirmed his friend’s father Gregg Gallagher caught a smallmouth that was weighed officially with DNR representatives on hand at 10.15 pounds. It will surely be the new Lake Erie record. We just have the preliminary details right now and will be getting the more details, photos and the full story hopefully soon.
Congrats to Gregg and his son Grant on a truly once-in-a-lifetime memory!
To our knowledge this smallmouth would rank as the fourth biggest ever caught. The world record is 11 pounds, 15 ounces caught out of Dale Hollow Lake. There was another from Dale Hollow that was 10 pounds, 14 ounces. The third largest was a tie with one caught in Dale and the one caught in out of the Wheeler Dam Tailwater in Alabama that were both 10 pounds, 8 ounces and the current fourth largest was 10 pounds even caught out of Hiwasse Reservoir.
Here is the full recount of what happened from the Gallaghers per Grant Gallagher’s Facebook page:
“First and foremost, thank you for all of the messages and well wishes over the past few days,” Grant Gallagher said. “A crazy sequence of events led to an unforgettable catch of a lifetime. A huge thank you goes to Crown Battery, St. Bonore Financial Services, Bass Cat Boats, and Clemons Boats for making all of this possible.
“Below is our official press release of what happened on Thursday November 3rd.”
“On Nov 3rd my son Grant and I, both teachers, woke up with a surprise day off due to fog,” Gregg Gallagher said. “The flat calm conditions were the perfect situation for our Bass Cat boat to travel wherever we desired on the Western end of Lake Erie. The goal was to catch a giant smallmouth bass 7lbs or better.
“For many years my son and I primarily chased the local popular species of walleye. Looking for something different we spent several years trying a variety of techniques to catch walleye by casting and jigging and not with the preferred trolling methods. This eventually gravitated us to spend more and more time specifically targeting bass. This desire grew even greater when Grant spent four years on the Adrian College Bass team.
“The countless time Grant has spent scouting, graphing and working on fine tuning our smallmouth techniques all paid off when he located what we both knew was a unique and likely unfished spot. With an abundance of baitfish located and a unique bottom content found via long days behind the graphs, we dropped down our forward facing sonar and was able to individually target these pelagic smallmouth.
“On what turned out to be the most memorable cast of my life, my bait got hit before it even hit the bottom and my rod quickly doubled over, I honestly thought I had hooked into a sheep head and not a smallmouth. We quickly learned we had just caught the smallmouth of a lifetime. After a quick weight in the boat, we knew the fish was approaching at least 9lbs and we immediately started to think of what we needed to do if it was. With a few phone calls and a great amount of help from lifelong friend Ross Robertson @bigwaterfishing, we needed to get the weight verified on an official scale. After a few more phone calls we were able to meet Travis Hartman (Lake Erie Fisheries Program Administrator for the Ohio DNR) and take the proper steps to apply for the record.
“Once the legalities and paperwork are finished, it will be the new Ontario Province record smallmouth bass, breaking a 68 year record. I think the video of both of us screaming like school girls over what ended up being the largest documented smallmouth ever caught on the Great Lakes says it all. The ability to do it with my son who has become the Captain of the boat and a much better fisherman than me, made it even more special. When it was all said and done the official weight was 10.15lbs and measured 23 ¾ x19 3/8. A huge thank you goes out to Crown Battery, St. Bonore Financial Services and Clemons Boats/Bass Cat for allowing my son and me to hunt these giant smallmouths prowling the Great