Even Texas impressed with the size of this fish

Friday, September 15, 2023
Matt Carlson’s 13.29-pound Florida-strain largemouth bass is helping improve fishing in Texas.
Courtesy photo

JOHNSTOWN, Colo. — A Colorado man with McCook ties and caught the fishing bug in Southwest Nebraska has landed a bass so big it even impresses Texans.

Matt Carlson and his family were in Texas on Feb. 17 for his son’s hockey tournament when he caught the 13.29-pound fish in the 20,000-acre O.H. Ivie Lake in central Texas, a lake on many fishermen’s bucket lists.

Matt and his cousin, Nick Rogers of McCook both became Nebraska Master Anglers, honing their fishing skills at Hugh Butler Lake north of McCook.

Matt’s family lived in McCook when he was in grade school before a railroad job took the family to Colorado, but Matt still loves McCook, even returning here for his wedding. He and his wife, Kris, live in Johnstown, Colo., with their children, Makennly and Levi. His parents are Alan and Annie Carlson and his grandparents were Al and Betty Carlson and Bill and Katie O’Neil.

Texas Parks and Wildlife adopted the fish for the state’s ShareLunker program, where the Florida-strain largemouth bass will be used in a selective breeding and stocking program to increase the number of genetically superior fish in its home water.

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