Dalton Smith, a passionate fishing guide from Lake St. Clair Charter, Michigan, has recently made waves in the fishing world. Smith's expertise lies in catching smallmouth bass, and he has a particular talent for teaching his clients how to catch them as well. He decided to take his skills to Lake O.H. Ivie Reservoir near San Angelo in Texas and has been reaping great success.
During his first trip to Texas last December, Smith landed two 14-pounders at Ivie in less than three hours. He watched both fish take his bait on his forward sonar, and the experience changed his life. At the time, he was only a part-time guide on Dale Hollow Lake and a fishing team coach at Campbellsville University in Kentucky. However, he packed his bags and moved to Ivie less than a week later.
Since January 1, Smith's clients have caught seven fish over 10 pounds and three over 12 pounds. Two of the monsters belong to Lea Anne Powell of Lake Jackson, who may break the world record with her 12-pound, 3-ounce catch. Powell is a seasoned angler who has fished on the East Coast before moving to Texas in 2021. She currently competes in the co-angler division in the Major League Fishing Toyota Series Southwestern Division and the Cowboy Division of the BFL's. Powell and Smith became friends about six months ago, and in February, they spent two
days fishing together.
Powell broke her personal best twice, catching a 10.58-pounder on a Strike King 10XD crankbait and the 12.3-pounder on a Damiki 3-inch Armor Shad Pro Blue soft jerk bait rigged on a 1/4-ounce jig head.
Powell battled the 12-pounder on light tackle, and the fight was intense. She claimed that the big bass hit her bait at the end of a 45-foot cast in an area with cluttered salt cedars and other brush. Dalton saw a wolf pack of other big fish trying to take the bait away from her fish, but Powell refused to take her eyes off the rod tip. She had to work with her drag constantly to avoid getting broken off on the spinning rod. Despite the challenge, she was thrilled with the result and the memory of the scrap. The application for the women's 12-pound line class world record is currently under review by the International Game Fish Association's records committee.