A Trip of a Lifetime....

Discussion in 'CANADIAN CATFISH' started by hardwaterfanatic, Mar 7, 2008.

  1. hardwaterfanatic

    hardwaterfanatic New Member

    Messages:
    4
    State:
    North Dakota
    Hello everyone, just joined up after hearing great things about the site from Capt Brad and Landscat! Look forward to reading up and getting some tips, as well as sharing some info on catfish as well.

    Here's a little story of my trip this past fall up to Lockport, MB for the SUMO Channels they have up there....

    Well, I was able to spend this past weekend taking part in the best fishing experience of my life, for a fish I only began fishing for roughly 2 years ago! I was able to spend a weekend up at the “Mecca” in Lockport, Manitoba fishing for the famous SUMO channel cats that lurk in the Red River. To say the fishing and trip were great would be an understatement as the numbers and size of fish were unbelievable!

    Well, I’ll get on with the report for a moment. Friday afternoon found me heading to Grand Forks to meet up with “the Brad’s” as some people know them by, "Capt Brad" being one of these Brad’s. We headed to Lockport around 5:30 with the word of a good bite from the previous day making the outlook for the weekend seem promising. We met up with Canuck(a good friend of ours) that evening and were told that he got reports from 2 seasoned catfisherman who had mustered only 3 cats total on Friday. The reference of the legend of “Coldfront Keizer” was quickly at the lips of everyone, including myself. Could I make the bite turn off on a trip again? It appeared the weather was constantly changing and the bait of choice was as well. We had armed ourselves with 60 frozen frogs, as well as 160 fresh frog that Canuck found the previous evening. All this would be put to the side as the bite appeared to be changing to tullibee. Well, we knew we had to give it a shot and the weather report that night showed stabilizing conditions, so there may be some hope.

    Day 1- We arrived at Cats on the Red to launch our boats into the river. There were many anglers already out, though many were after walleyes not even bothering with the trophies that lurked in the river. Only 3 of us headed out as Canuck was on a mission to find some tullibee, since word of a change in feeding habits had been found. Well we set out to try some old reliable spots. We ended up at our 3rd spot and things started looking up. We were able to pull 6 fish in, with the newbie (myself) getting 5 with the biggest being 36-1/2” my first Master Angler, before Canuck was back with a cooler full of tullibee. We decided to split up and I hopped in with Canuck. With the “Ace”(Canuck) in the boat with me I knew things would be good and I wasn’t disappointed. We headed for the dam as the weather wasn’t allowing us to hold in any spots. Well, lets get on with it eh? Within a minute of casting into the churning, turbulent waters I had a fish on, a fish near 35” not more than a minute later Canuck had one on as well. We proceeded to catch fish on the first 15 or 16 casts before things started to slow down a bit. After it was all said and done, we had caught 24 cats in 2 hours with the sizes ranging from 31” to 38-1/4” in length. I was able to get my personal best cat which was 38-1/4” and over 30lbs!

    [​IMG]

    I had also achieved the Master Angler Specialist which is 5 fish over 34”, which was something else to be excited about. It was an absolute riot up in the dam, though it’s an area that needs to be respected also, as I giggled like a little kid having the time of his life! One other thing that was great to see while we were up there was a young boy, around 12 yrs old, who hopped in our boat and was able to land a 37-1/2” & 35” cat within minutes to make his father proud! We ended up catching up with “The Brads” and called it a day shortly after. Final fish count for Day 1 was 37 cats, not bad considering the report we had got from the day before.

    Here’s a slideshow of the Day 1 fish, let the rod bending begin...

    http://s6.photobucket.com/albums/y2...ort Sept 07/?action=view&current=c6aa82eb.pbw

    Day 2 - Well after being informed that I may have experienced “The best of the best”, bite wise, we were back after the SUMO’s on Sunday morning! With the dam being a good spot the day before, we all headed up to that area in the morning to see if the kitties had had any breakfast yet. They must have as we were only able to pull 5 fish out before pulling out. I ended up getting one that weighed in at 27.9lbs, so not a bad start. We ended up heading down the river to where there had been some success by Brad & Brad, the day before. The kitties were busting on the surface when they arrived and they had already boated 7 fish by the time Canuck and I joined in. Well, I thought the bite from the day before was the best, well I was wrong. Over the course of the day many, many big fish were landed and to catch BIG fish after BIG fish in the same spot was something I just couldn’t grasp. The size of the fish Sunday was better than the day before as well, many fish over 25lbs were pulled into the boat, with Brad & Brad each getting a fish over 30lbs!!! By the time 4 pm rolled around we had our counts together and realized we were at 91 cats for the trip, well we couldn’t leave without hitting 100 could we? The bite continued and getting to 98 went fairly quick but it took nearly 15-20 minutes to get the final 2, yes I know ONLY 15-20 minutes. Once again, tullibee reigned as the bait that was used 95% of the time and for good reason. It was quite amazing to hear 3 “seasoned” veterans of the Red speak of the shear size and power of these fish, they seemed nearly as amazed as I was at the way the fish appeared and to have fish after fish nearly look the same. A saying I soon picked up over the weekend was “Chuck Em” as we netted fish of great magnitude only to release them without much of a glance, hard to believe one could be so spoiled.

    Well, here’s a slideshow of Day 2, could it get any better???

    http://s6.photobucket.com/albums/y2...ort Sept 07/?action=view&current=b18c6204.pbw

    To sum it up, final fish count 100, 4 guys, 2 days; an average weight well beyond 20lbs. So one could say again, a TON of fun was had at the Mecca. This year has been an absolutely phenomenal year for SUMO cats and I’m glad I was able to finally get up to see “what it’s all about” I still can’t believe how great the fishing was, even though I’m back in the States. The shear size and power of these cats is unreal and to pull fish after fish after fish out of the same spot for the period of time, is something I still can’t get over. It is just something that can’t be done on the US stretch of this fishery.

    I have to thank the guys that invited me up and let me enjoy and participate in this weekend of fun and fishing. It was a learning experience for me and one I won’t soon forget. I was able to see that these trips are more than just about fishing as well, as the socializing that took place during the day as well as the evening was equally enjoyed.

    If you are an avid catfish angler, you owe it to yourself to get up to Lockport and give this fishery a try. Even if you are looking to experience another realm of fishing, head north to Lockport. You just must find yourself saying “Black and Blue on the Red eh?”
     
  2. Cheryl

    Cheryl Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,010
    State:
    TN
    Welcome to the BOC/SOC.

    Thanks for the great report! I enjoyed the pics, too!
     

  3. ozzy

    ozzy New Member

    Messages:
    3,936
    State:
    Lost Wages
    Thanks for the amazing photos. Looks like your ready for 2008. Good luck brother.
     
  4. PHLIPS4BIGKATS

    PHLIPS4BIGKATS New Member

    Messages:
    2,679
    State:
    Alma Kansas
    Thanks for sharing those great pics. Also welcome to the B.O.C.:eek:oooh::crazy::big_smile:
     
  5. hardwaterfanatic

    hardwaterfanatic New Member

    Messages:
    4
    State:
    North Dakota
    Thanks for the welcome everyone! I have heard about the site for awhile just kept forgetting to check it out.

    The cat season will be upon us soon, can't wait to try new water, improve on PB's,etc.