Class is in session today, all you fishing and boating buffs who use the waters of the three Greensboro city-owned lakes and Lake Jeanette, the Cone Mills lake that is home for Guilford Wildlife Club.
The reason for this class is because several folks have asked about the biggest bass that have been taken from these waters.People who work at the lakes sometimes are asked the same question, so it is appropriate that these records be put on paper since chief lake warden Pat Brown retired last Friday.
Pat checked around with lake wardens and former lake warden Jim Dillard to come up with the records that will be listed in the next few paragraphs. There may be some challenges to these, but Pat thinks that are pretty accurate.
If anyone has any additional information about possible records for the city lakes, they should contact wardens with verification of additional claims.
How often is a 12-pound plus largemouth bass caught from the city lakes? Would you believe only two such fish have been caught from Brandt, Higgins and Townsend? And Brandt was built 65 years ago.
That 12-pound, 2-ounce largemouth bass was caught from Lake Brandt in April 1967 by C.T. Boyles of High Point. It not only is the Brandt record, but also the biggest bass reported from the three lakes.
Brandt now consists of about 840 acres at normal pool elevation. It was much smaller for its first 30 years. The dam was raised on Brandt in 1958.
Lake Townsend is the newest and largest of the city lakes, and it has yielded quality bass since anglers began fishing it in spring of 1970, just a few months after the city opened the lake for recreational purposes.
The 12-pound mark on Townsend has been surpassed once. That came April 25 of last year when Laurent Jennette pulled in a fish weighing 12 pounds, 1/2 ounce.
Lake Higgins was originally known as Hamburg Mill Lake, but was changed to Higgins shortly after being dammed in 1956. Honors for the biggest bass from Higgins goes to Greensboro angler Darryl Welker, who caught a 11-pound, 3-ounce trophy in March 1988.
David Trout began wondering about such city lake records just last Sunday. He caught a 9 pound, 13 1/2 ounce bass from Brandt. He was told that was the biggest bass caught from those waters in several years.
The fish also was about 4 pounds heavier than any bass he had previously caught from those waters and the many Guilford County farm ponds he fishes. Incidentally, it has been five years since the 10-pound mark was hit at Brandt. That came as a 10-pound, 1-ouncer caught by David Singleton.
His catch is not the biggest of the year from the city lakes, however. The 10-pound mark has been bettered twice on Townsend during 1990. Don Craven had a 10-pound, 6-ouncer in May and Benny Abernathy caught one weighing 10-4 in early November.
When it comes down to the biggest bass caught in the city lakes or Lake Jeanette, the honors go to Danny Greer for his 13-pound, 1-ounce monster from Lake Jeanette about five winters back.
That fish brought a round of applause from more than 1,000 folks who were attending an American Fishing Institute seminar at UNC Greensboro.
Program moderator Dave Myers was closing the program when someone walked behind him carrying the big fish. He couldn't understand the sudden round of applause that broke out until he turned around and saw Greer's trophy.
Greer's catch not only may be the record for the four lakes, but it also is the biggest I have seen taken from Guilford County waters.
Records are skimpy on other species on the city lakes. Higgins warden John Cranford recalls a 3 pound, 2-ounce crappie being caught there, but he doesn't remember who caught it.
A 12-pound Bodie bass is the record at Higgins, caught by Tom Cotten in 1986. The Bodie bass record at Townsend is 11 1/2 pounds and 10 pounds, 1 ounce at Lake Jeanette.
Anglers having knowledge of possible record fish from these four lakes should contact wardens at the city lakes or club manager Harry Sanders at Guilford Wildlife Club.