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Wild and wonderful…
The Mountain State…
Call it what you will, but West Virginia is, without question, one of the most scenic states in the nation.
Thousands and square miles of Appalachian wonderful and enough small towns and backroads to travel for a lifetime. What’s not to love?
For anglers looking to etch their names in the record books, West Virginia also offers a unique opportunity to make history…
Double the Fun
In most states, the state record fish for each species in record exclusively by weight. In West Virginia, however, things are a bit different…
Anglers can, in fact, capture the West Virginia state fishing record by recording either the heaviest fish of any particular species or the longest.
As you will see on the list, there are plenty of times when one fish meets both criteria. That said, in the case of largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, muskie, walleye, and several others, there are two distinct West Virginia state fishing records listed.
Where Are Best Fishing Spots in West Virginia?
West Virginia may not have the abundance of lakes found in neighboring states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, but there are still some great fishing spots.
48 of West Virginia’s 55 counties house a public fishing lake. Statewide, there over 120 public fishing lakes and ponds. Add in a few hundred rivers, creeks, and private ponds and there is no shortage of great fishing spots.
According to the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, however, some of the best fishing spots in West Virginia include:
- Largemouth Bass: Burnsville Lake, Cheat Lake, Sutton Lake, R.D. Bailey Lake, Stonewall Jackson Lake, Elk Fork Lake, and the backwater of the Ohio River
- Smallmouth Bass: Summerville Lake, Tygart Lake, New River, Shenandoah River, Potomac River (south branch and mainstream), and the Elk River
- Muskie: Middle Island Creek, Kanawha River, Buckhannon River, Sandy Creek, and Dunkard Creek
List of Every West Virginia State Fishing Record
|Species||Year||Total Length (Inches)||Total Weight (Pounds)||Location|
|Largemouth||1994||24.8||12.28||Pond (Grant County)|
|2001||25.75||9.62||Dog Run Lake|
|Rock||1964||13.8||1.75||Big Sandy Creek|
|Spotted||1988||19||3.82||RD Bailey Lake|
|2000||19||4.77||RD Bailey Lake|
|Striped Bass||2000||37.68||29.56||Bluestone Lake|
|Hybrid Striped Bass||1985||31.5||16.75||Kanawha River|
|White Bass||1985||20||4.56||New River|
|Bluegill||1964||13.75||2.25||Pond (Fayette County)|
|1986||11.7||2.75||Pond (Randolph County)|
|Bowfin||1994||32.25||7.54||Pond (Berkeley County)|
|1994||29.38||7.66||Pond (Berkeley County)|
|Buffalo||1976||41||38||Little Kanawha River|
|1998||39.3||47||Pond (Preston County)|
|Bullhead||1977||22.75||6.1||Tygart Lake Headwaters|
|Flathead||1956||52||70||Little Kanawha River|
|Chain Pickerel||2001||27.75||6.19||Tuckahoe Lake|
|2019||27.87||N/A||Upper Deckers Creek|
|Eel||1977||44||7.25||Bunker Hill Quarry|
|Fallfish||1970||21.25||3.5||North Fork of South Branch|
|Freshwater Drum||1954||37||25||Little Kanawha River|
|1989||35.5||27||South Fork of Hughes|
|Longnose Gar||1993||50.5||19.08||Kanawha River|
|Northern Pike||1989||42.6||22.06||Dog Run Lake|
|2000||27.1||6.13||East Lynn Lake|
|Skip Jack||1991||18.6||2.38||Ohio River|
|Tiger Musky||1994||49.25||36.5||Mountwood Lake|
|2004||22.25||7.64||Shavers Fork of Cheat River|
|Golden Rainbow||1987||27.5||8.63||Stonecoal Lake|
|1998||26.4||9.31||Brushy Fork Lake|
|Yellow Perch||1971||15||1.75||Pond (Monongalia County)|
Did you notice any records that need updated? Kindly let us know in the comments below.