Giant Flathead Breaks Lake Jackson Record

Donald Kennedy caught this almost 64-lb. Appaloosa while fishing from the bank.

Jordan Davis | April 19, 2016


Donald Kennedy, of Monticello, smiles with a huge Lake Jackson flathead he caught April 13. The fish weighed 63-lbs., 11-ozs. and was recently announced by GON as the new Lake Jackson record.

A night of catfishing from the bank turned into a record-setting experience for a Lake Jackson angler. Donald Kennedy, of Monticello, reeled in a monster flathead catfish on Wednesday, April 13, from Jackson.

Donald reached his spot on the bank near the split of the South and Yellow rivers at about 5:30 p.m. He immediately began catching bream for bait.

Shortly before catching the big one, Donald caught a 6-lb. channel cat. Roughly 30 minutes later, around 9 o’clock, Donald felt another bite.

“I felt a hard tug,” said Donald. “It hit like a flathead.”

“It seemed as if the catfish pulled off about 100 yards of line in four seconds. It happened so fast,” said Donald.

Donald fishes with circle hooks, which rely on the fish getting the hook to a certain point in its mouth for the hook to set. The good thing with circle hooks is that there’s no need to set the hook. The fish hooks itself.

“I just started trying to reel and finally got him in,” said Donald.

After weighing him unofficially, Donald decided to keep the fish on a stringer throughout the night. The following morning Donald loaded up the flathead and took him to the WRD Fisheries office in Social Circle.

The 50-inch-long fish weighed 63-lbs., 11-ozs. and beat the old Lake Jackson flathead record by 1 1/2 pounds.

Donald took the flathead back to a shallow part near the dam and released him, but after coming back later to check on it, the fish had not moved.

“I was sad he didn’t make it,” Donald said. “I normally let anything over 20 pounds go. I like seeing the big ones get released.”

If you catch a potential record fish, call GON at (800) 438-4663, or e-mail the magazine at [email protected].


Lake Jackson Record Fish

Largemouth Bass14-lbs., 7-ozs.John Burnett03/09/86
Spotted Bass6-lbs., 0.03-ozs.Bill Haines06/08/18
Black Crappie3-lbs., 8.5-ozs.Barry Massey04/16/91
White Crappie1-lb., 2-ozs.Dylan Peppers05/31/05
Yellow Perch1-lb., 6-ozs.Rusty Tate02/06/19
Hybrid Bass15-lbs., 2-ozs.Jack Anderson04/16/92
Shellcracker2-lbs., 3-ozs.Jeff Weege04/22/92
Common Carp35-lbs., 12-ozs.*Donald Clark1972
Chain Pickerel2-lbs., 9.28-ozs.Hunter Parker04/20/21
Flathead Catfish64-lbs., 6.08-ozs.Daniel Perrier05/29/23
Channel Catfish16-lbs., 10.56-ozs.Grant Burroughs02/13/17
Blue Catfish46-lbs., 7-ozs.Luke Chandler11/15/18
Striped Bass27-lbs.Scott HayesJune 1985
Warmouth0.88-lbs.Hunter Parker03/21/21

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