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Inks Lake, O.H. Ivie Register Legacy Class ShareLunkers: Bringing in the Bass

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Darrly Hanson II of Round Rock reeled in 13.40-pound ShareLunker 662 Sunday, (March 10) and with his catch, Inks Lake became the 78th public water body to produce a Legacy Lunker. Larry Walker of Irving landed 13.83-pound ShareLunker 663 Monday evening (March 11) at O.H. Ivie — the 13th entry overall of the 2024 Toyota ShareLunker collection season. Courtesy Images
Darrly Hanson II of Round Rock reeled in 13.40-pound ShareLunker 662 Sunday, (March 10) and with his catch, Inks Lake became the 78th public water body to produce a Legacy Lunker. Larry Walker of Irving landed 13.83-pound ShareLunker 663 Monday evening (March 11) at O.H. Ivie — the 13th entry overall of the 2024 Toyota ShareLunker collection season. Courtesy Images
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ATHENS, Texas – Inks Lake and O.H. Ivie registered Legacy Class ShareLunkers on back-to-back days to start the second week of March. Inks Lake in Central Texas etched its name in the Toyota ShareLunker record books with its first Legacy Class largemouth bass, while O.H. Ivie delivered its sixth Legacy Lunker this season.

Darrly Hanson II of Round Rock reeled in 13.40-pound ShareLunker 662 Sunday, (March 10) and with his catch, Inks Lake became the 78th public water body to produce a Legacy Lunker. Larry Walker of Irving landed 13.83-pound ShareLunker 663 Monday evening (March 11) at O.H. Ivie — the 13th entry overall of the 2024 Toyota ShareLunker collection season.

“In the Lone Star State, there are numerous water bodies capable of reaching an impressive 13 pounds or heavier,” said Natalie Goldstrohm, Toyota ShareLunker program coordinator. “There are reservoirs that have historically produced bigger bass, like Lake Fork and O.H. Ivie, and those that are lesser known that have remarkable trophy bass fisheries. We are awaiting what the remainder of the season holds.”

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Hanson’s ShareLunker 662 was the third from a new water body this year, with Inks Lake joining J.B. Thomas and Fort Phantom with its first Legacy Class fish. Seven different reservoirs have provided entries to the fold this collection season. Hanson’s ShareLunker 662 from Inks Lake was a monumental catch in more ways than one because it’s the new Inks Lake record for largemouth bass.

Prior to Sunday (March 11), only nine total fish have been entered into the year-round ShareLunker program. The biggest in the group was a Strike King Elite Class entry on March 15, 2023, from Carsen Clark of Killeen that weighed 11.35 pounds. The previous Inks Lake largemouth bass record weighed 12.50 pounds and was set on Feb. 18, 2017, by Christopher Snyder.

Hanson headed to Inks Lake early in the morning Sunday to compete in the Tonkawa Bassmasters Club tournament. He had not fished Inks Lake in a couple of years but had a plan for where to fish based on past trips to the lake.

“I’ve had decent luck at Inks Lake in the past, and the lake has some good structure,” said Hanson. “There is a particular area that has all sorts of docks and cement dock structure all around, which provides great cover, so I decided to target fish there. I put a couple of fish in the live well using an A-rig first thing in the morning to try and capitalize on bites. Then there was an area that I could see off to the left that was on a point with structure. I threw an A-rig running it parallel against it and she slammed it.”

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The battle for ShareLunker 662 ensued.

“I set the hook, and she pulled back and ran out to open water,” added Hanson. “She came up out of the water and I knew this was a big fish. She made five or six runs with two of them going underneath the boat. She got to the point where I could get her closer to the boat and scooped her into the net. I lifted her in the boat and said that must be a double-digit.”

Hanson weighed the fish on the tournament scale, and it checked in at 13.40 pounds. He ended up catching more fish totaling a 39-pound bag enroute to a tournament championship. ShareLunker 662 was also a personal best, eclipsing his previous best of 11.4 pounds at Choke Canyon. Hanson made the call to TPWD to begin the entry process into the Toyota ShareLunker program.

“I headed over to the Inks Lake State Park office and officially weighed her there for the Angler Recognition Program,” said Hanson. “Natalie walked me through the process, the state park staff was very helpful, and all in all the ShareLunker program is an excellent one.”

At O.H. Ivie, Walker was fishing with his guide and good friend Kyle Hall on Monday. He has fished the lake for many years, and Monday’s mission was to catch a ShareLunker.

“We started out early in the morning, caught a few small fish, saw some big ones and then finally saw a great big one on the nest,” said Walker. “I got lucky, and it bit. It came out of the water, and it looked like Moby Dick. When I got it in the boat, it weighed 13.83 pounds. I’ve been doing this for a long time, but it was so exciting. I’ve been so blessed in my life fishing, and this makes 185 fish over 10 pounds that I’ve caught. This catch is the second largest bass I’ve ever caught.”

Walker has fished around the world, and the largest black bass he ever caught was a 14.4-pounder in Honduras in 1977, but his favorite place to fish is Texas.

“I’m so blessed to get to fish some of the best places in the world, but you can’t beat Texas,” added Walker. “I’ve been in the fishing business all my life. We had a sporting goods store in Grand Prairie and Garland and a marina on Lake Joe Pool. We have always supported the ShareLunker program. The state of Texas really has it going on and this is such a fantastic program. We have the best bass fishing in the United States and maybe the world and a lot of it is because of the ShareLunker program.”

During the first three months of the season (Jan. 1-March 31), anglers who reel in a 13-plus-pound bass can loan it to TPWD for the ShareLunker selective breeding and stocking program. These anglers can call the ShareLunker hotline at (903) 681-0550 to report their catch 24/7 through March 31.

Anglers must weigh their potential Legacy Class fish on a certified scale. A list of official weigh stations can be found on the ShareLunker Official Weigh and Holding Stations website. Walker used the certified scale at Elm Creek Marina to weigh his catch.

Anglers who catch and loan one of these 13-plus-pound Lunkers earn Legacy Class status, receive a catch kit filled with merchandise, a 13lb+ Legacy decal for their vehicle or boat, VIP access to the Toyota ShareLunker Annual Awards event, a high-quality replica mount of their fish from Lake Fork Taxidermy, and Bass University will provide a swag pack and annual subscription. These anglers will also receive entries into two separate drawings – a Legacy Class Drawing and the year-end Grand Prize Drawing. Both drawings will award the winner a $5,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree.

The year-round Toyota ShareLunker program offers four levels of participation for catching bass over 8 pounds or 24 inches in Texas.

Anglers who enter data for any Lunker they catch greater than 8 pounds or 24 inches during the 2024 calendar year also receive a catch kit, a decal for their vehicle or boat, a one-month subscription to Bass University and an entry into the year-end Grand Prize Drawing to win a $5,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree. ShareLunker entry classes include the Bass Pro Shops Lunker Class (8 pounds or more), Strike King Elite Class (10 pounds or more), and Lew’s Legend Class (13 pounds or more).

Once a Lunker is reeled in, anglers need to enter the catch data on the Toyota ShareLunker mobile app – available for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play – or on the Toyota ShareLunker online app at TexasSharelunker.com.

In addition to providing basic catch information, anglers have the option to send a DNA scale sample from their lunker bass to TPWD researchers for genetic analysis. Anglers who contribute a sample to the program in 2024 will receive a Lew’s baitcast reel valued at up to $200 while supplies last, with a limit of one reel per angler. Anglers who send in a genetic sample will also get a three-month subscription to Bass University. Instructions for submitting DNA samples are located on the Toyota ShareLunker website.

The Toyota ShareLunker Program is made possible in part by the generous sponsorship of Toyota. Toyota is a longtime supporter of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation and TPWD, providing major funding for a wide variety of fisheries, state parks and wildlife projects.

Additional vital program support comes from Legend class category prize sponsor Lew’s, Elite class category prize sponsor Strike King, Lunker class category prize sponsor Bass Pro Shops, American Fishing Tackle Co., Bass Forecast, Bass University, Lake Fork Taxidermy and 6th Sense Fishing. For updates on the Toyota ShareLunker Program, visit facebook.com/sharelunkerprogram/, https://www.instagram.com/TexasShareLunker/ or TexasSharelunker.com.

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