The bizarre twists and turns of the nation's biggest outdoors story of the year -- an alleged world-record bass caught at a small lake near Santa Rosa -- could lead to a final answer in the next week by the International Game Fish Association.

"I've had 100 calls already this week from all over," said Doug Blodgett of the IGFA in Florida, which presides over world records for fishing. "I want it to be resolved as quickly as possible. There is still information coming in from the confirmation committee."

Blodgett said he hoped for a decision by Christmas.

At the center of the storm is a largemouth bass said to weigh 22 pounds, 8 ounces. That would break the Holy Grail of fishing records, the 61-year-old record of 22-4 caught in Georgia by a postal worker named George Perry.

Leha Trew of Santa Rosa quietly mailed a submission form to Blodgett and the IGFA this fall claiming the record. According to the form, Trew caught the bass at 70-acre Spring Lake in the Sonoma County foothills, weighed it on a certified BogaGrip scale on shore, and then released the fish unharmed. Her son, Javad Trew of Petaluma, and Charles Fleming of Santa Rosa, a picnicker at the park, witnessed the weigh-in, according to the form. One photograph of the fish accompanied the submission.

By IGFA rules, Trew fulfilled requirements for a world-record, believes George Kramer of WON Bass based in Southern California.

Yet hundreds have called the episode the hoax of the year and expect the IGFA to throw it out.

"There's just too many things not right about this," said Terry Knight, of Lakeport, who has worked as a pro bass guide, tournament fisherman and researched the claim. "The worst of it is that her son (Javad) claims to have caught a line-class world record bass the following week, 18 pounds, 8 ounces. A lot of people think it's the same fish used twice."

Leha Trew of Santa Rosa and Javad Trew of Petaluma refuse to talk to media, according to several reports. Attempts