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SUBJECT: New State Record Trout!!

Submitted by Chance ( from TEXAS on

Looks like an IGFA record will get you a state record. It's official. Bud Rowland's world record 37.5", 15lb. 6oz. trout is now the new Texas state record replacing Wallace's 13.11. This is news to me but apparently TPW changed their mind and certified it back in January.

You can carve this one in stone and hang it on the wall because I doubt this one will be broken in my lifetime, if ever. Man what a fish.

Corpus Christi Caller Times

Trout record was a long time coming

State revises rule, recognizes 15-pound 6 ounce fish caught in 2002

June 10, 2004

Texas has a new state record spotted sea trout._It's that 15-pound 6-ounce trout caught on the fly by Carl "Bud" Rowland of McAllen, which I wrote about back in August 2002. Rowland caught the 37 1/4-inch Lower Laguna Madre speck in May 2002, while sightcasting from his boat near a spoil bank a short ride from his part-time Port Isabel home.

Houston angler Jim Wallace's 13-pound 11-ounce Baffin Bay trout, which held the state's top spot since 1996, is officially Number Two.


But only recently did Texas recognize this shattered record because Rowland released his fish. It finally was unceremoniously sanctioned on Jan. 24, 2004. Nobody told me.

Apparently, Texas Parks & Wildlife officials changed their minds, and their policy that required fish be brought in and weighed on a scale certified by the state.

The International Game Fish Association had certified Rowland's remarkable catch more than a year earlier as the largest trout ever recorded using 16-pound tippet. Tippet is fly-speak for the leader to which a fly is attached. Rowland's fish is the largest fly-caught trout listed in the IGFA's 2003 World Record Game Fishes, a publication in which his name has appeared several times before.

Joedy Gray, who oversees the TPW fish-records program, told me last week that if Rowland's fish survived the rigorous IGFA certification test, then it should be good enough for the State of Texas. This controversial position of the state has fluctuated during the past two years. Originally, Gray said that out of fairness the state's rules could not be changed retroactively to accommodate Rowland's trout.

Gray also waived the state's 60-day rule for submitting records' applications because it took longer than 60 days for the IGFA to certify Rowland's fish. Rowland said he really wasn't all that interested in the state record. Friends encouraged him to do it. Then, in an unusual move, TPW actually encouraged him to submit his trout information for consideration. Finally the necessary paperwork arrived at TPW headquarters.

I've heard the arguments for and against certifying release fish as state records. Some say the program's credibility will suffer by opening the door to cheating. It would be an easy task to fill a fish's belly with lead before photographing it. Perhaps not so easy would be convincing two witnesses to participate in the conspiracy.

The IGFA requires a photo of the fish being weighed by a scale (usually a handheld scale) and the signatures of two people who were present while the fish is being weighed. In addition, the IGFA requires that the scale be certified and sent to them for inspection. In the case of line-class records, the actual tippet or leader must be inspected and tested by the IGFA before the fish is accepted as a record.

Meanwhile, catch and release proponents argue that if TPW wishes to effectively encourage fisheries conservation, then its policies should reflect this stance. For the state to virtually require trophy-class fish be killed before being considered for the Texas record book would seem contradictory, they say. The department since has adopted a system for release fish, similar to that of the IGFA.

Say what you will about all this, but it's a done deal. So what did Rowland use to entice a strike from his celebrated trout? He used an imitation crab/shrimp-looking fly he tied himself, and aptly named Numero Uno.

  1. Goldstein ( from TEXAS says Bad Idea
    The door is now open! New state records will become the norm. TXPWD, what in the hell are you thinkin?

  2. Mike in Friendswood from TEXAS says What a bunch of Crap!
    Rigorous IGFA certification test? What is rigorous about a system that was totally scammed in the name of money a few years back. Why not certify the other 14+ pound fish that passed this rigorous cerification. In case you missed it, here is a post from a few years back:

    I once heard from a very reputable source the real story behind those “record “ trout. In 1984, Stren had a promotion going that paid $1000 to anyone that set a world record using their fishing line. At some point this person caught a very large trout (~10 lbs). When he brought it in, someone told him about the contest. He took some pictures, filled out the form, and had his brother-in-law weigh the fish for him. His brother-in-law owned a butcher shop, and had the required certified scale. Then he took more pictures, filled out more forms, and submitted the same fish for 6 different world records (some for him and some for is wife). They were all granted, and they pocketed a cool six grand. Of course they did not submit any for state records, because then someone would have actually had to see the fish!

    Here are a few other facts that support them getting away with something:

    - We had the killer freeze in 1983. There is no way that six 13-14 lb. fish could be caught on the Texas City Flats ever, let alone one year after the freeze.

    -No polygraph was required for the contest or for an IGFA record.

    -It is common for IGFA to receive multiple entries for the same species in different line classes at the same time, so they would not question it.

    -In Florida (where the IGFA is located) speckled trout are no big deal(the current world record speckled trout was caught in Florida, and after it was weighed and photographed, it was eaten) so they would not have any reason to question a bunch of large trout coming from Texas. If it had been tarpon or some other fish that Floridians care about, they may have examined the pictures more closely.

    -This was a “victimless” crime. Even if they had been found out, the odds of ever being prosecuted were zero. They basically had nothing to lose but integrity.

    The person who told me this story, saw the original fish. I was quite a big deal for a 10 lb. trout to be caught in that area, especially after the freeze when any trout were hard to come by. However the records and the fishing contest entries were kept very quiet, and these did not come out until a year later(He worked in the retail fishing tackle business, and they sent out a flyer listing all the world records caught the previous year). Since they were world records, most have been beaten. However as far as I am concerned, they are bogus, and the only record that counts for Texas is the one Jim Wallace holds.

    My opinion, however insiginificant, has not changed. Anybody that really wanted to, could have themselves a new record via IGFA, and then since that process is so rigorous, they instanly qualify for a state record.

  3. Bigwater ( from TEXAS says Pogie did it.
    I'll bet Pogiepower was in the room when they voted it in!! LMAO


  4. Trouthunter from TEXAS says Can't Add Much To That Mike...
    Well done.


  5. Chance ( from TEXAS says Could be...
    There's a million ways to cheat the system especially when money is involved. I can't blame Rowland for anything since he did what IGFA requires which is measured the fish, weigh it and had two guys witness it. Were those other guys involved as well?

    Point it unless we're actually standing next to the guy who caught the fish we never really know if it's legal. He could have netted it, found it belly up almost dead, caught it in a trap, etc.

    Who knows. Regardless a 37" fish is one heck of a trout.

  6. Gater ( from TEXAS says I agree Mike
    What a bunch of bull! TP&W has certain guidlines that must be followed and in Bud's case they where not. I'm not doubting Bud's catch but rules are rules and they must be followed are the system becomes flawed. In my opinion, Jim Wallace is still the record holder. By the way, last week I caught a 32" Sand Trout that weighed 18lbs on my Boga Grip. My 5 year old and my Golden retriever were the witnesses. Stand by and I'll see if I can dig up the pictures. Gater

  7. Fishin ( from TEXAS says Not discounting the fish
    The fish was a fish of a lifetime. However TPW made a bad move yet again. Think of a tournament. You cant release fish before bringin them into the weigh in site. They know people will cheat! Same should be for the state records.

  8. Mike in Friendswood from TEXAS says I never said I don't believe he caught the fish....... simply cannot change the rules in the middle of the game. Jim Wallace played the game by the rules and should still be the winner.


  9. fed up ( from TEXAS says state record
    wallace has the record. fish was brought in and weight was verified on scale. other people witnessed the weighing of the fish other than those fishing with wallace. rowland may have caught a big fish but with only pictures and such is it truly the state record trout? pictures and people have a way of not showing the real truth. anyway with a trout expectant lifespan of around 9 years, apparently a fish that big would be near death. Why the hell would you let it go. dont say so she could spawn again, or because they were such sportsman B.S. Wallace's trout is the one we all would love to beat.

  10. Goldstein ( from TEXAS says TXPWD, you've got mail!
    Let them know what you think, I just did.

  11. Pepper ( from TEXAS says Blame TPW, not Rowland
    From what I've read of Mr. Rowland he seems to be a straight up guy who already owns a bunch of fly records so I'm not going to say it wasn't 15-6. I've seen pictures and it's a HOG! 37"??? My gawd!!

    Rowland was fishing by the rules - IGFA rules. Too bad TPW didn't make the change beforehand.

    Like it or not Rowland's fish is the record so if you want your name on the wall you better beat 15-6. Otherwise you're fishing for second place.


  12. Rb ( from TEXAS says How would you feel?
    What if you caught a 15lb 5 oz fish on certified scales only to have been outdone by 1 oz off by this fish. There is no dought in my mind that this fish was a new state record but tpwd opens itself up to problems in the future. If someone who fishes once a year catches a big fish and has 2 witnesses and a picture would they not get the record or the fact that this guy is a legend (rightly so)do the rules only apply to him. Just a thought, nonetheless a great fish Bud!

  13. shane ( from TEXAS says rowland's fish
    Did they ever screw up or what? These state records no longer have any meaning whatsoever! Changing the rules midstream??????? JIM WALLACE IS STILL THE MAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Guess Who? Yep! Nicky Poo ( from GEORGIA says I caught a 16 pound spotted speckled weakfish in friggin Georgia!
    And nobody believes me, except some of my friends!

    with respect,,,,,,,

  15. Tm ( from TEXAS says Not what TP&W web page says!
    Here is the URL TP&W Salt Water rod & reel records.

    Why if they certified Bud's Trout in January have they not updated the web page?

  16. squeezer ( from TEXAS says whats the big deal?
    Bud has the state record for fly rod. Wallace still holds the record for rod and reel. So for all yor potlickers there is still the chance you just might get one soakin your meat.

  17. Newt from TEXAS says Bud Rowland
    We had this discussion on the TKF board back in Febuary.

  18. Hard Head from TEXAS says Jim Wallace once told me
    That "I'm Jim Wallace and I hold the Texas State Spotted Sea Trout Record, and you should give me my CCA membership".

    I was working the Boat Show CCA Booth. I looked up at him and said I know who you are, and that'll be $25 please. Talk about an EGO!

  19. Fishin ( from TEXAS says Hard Head
    Did you offer him a free nub job? That sounds like a cocky person.

  20. Hard Head from TEXAS says Arrogant is more the word I'd say! lol nm

  21. RPool ( from TEXAS says Copied and pasted from TPWD website, updated 6/10
    Seatrout Spotted 13.69 33.13 02/06/96 Upper Laguna Madre Baffin Bay James Wallace

    Again, it states the update was 6/10/2004

  22. Hard Head from TEXAS says RPool, Jim's record will stand as the largest caught on rod and reel
    The Bud Rowland Trout Record is by means of Fly Rod. Two different categories.

  23. RPool ( from TEXAS says When is a fly rod not a rod and a fly reel not a reel?
    Apparently in Texas. What I learned by looking at the website is that I've tossed back several saltwater state records caught with my fly rod. I caught an inshore lizardfish last summer on a Clouser that would have topped the rod and reel record as well. Fame is indeed fleeting.

  24. Lino ( from TEXAS says Bigger trout
    Just think of all fisherman out there that fish for a meal. Case in point old fisher man that don't know trout records or care to. I was fishing with an old man that caught a speckle trout so big, that trout could not even be bend into a 28" ice chest. My two hands could not rap around the trout. You could easily put a mans fist in the mouth of that trout. I will never forget telling the old man that he had a world record trout (biggest I have see in my life) his reply yea, as he fillet his meal. That trout had to have been 38" and wt. 20lbs. Can anyone imagine all the unknown big trout caught and eaten as meals.

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