Classic channel catfish

Discussion in 'CALIFORNIA LAKES / RESERVOIRS TALK' started by KnotGillty, Dec 31, 2006.

  1. KnotGillty

    KnotGillty New Member

    Messages:
    401
    State:
    Northern Califo
    I'm new to the board and look forward to making positive contributions in any way I can. I have 3 + decades of catfishing experience. I live in Northern California and have the wonderful opportunity to fish locally for salmon, stripers, sturgeon, trout, and catfish. Within an hours drive I can get halibut, shark, & rockcod. It's a wonderful place for a fisherman to live. Fishing is deeply embedded in my soul and cats are my first love as they turned a boy into a life long fisherman. Blue cats do not inhabit any of my local waters so my main cat focus consists of catching Channels. My favorite lake to catfish is Clear Lake. If things turn out right, I'll retire there someday.

    Thanks for having such a good site with a wealth of information. I'm still trying to get accustomed to the home page as there is just so much information.

    Listed below are some Channel cats my wife and I caught at Clear Lake back in October. We caught over 150 pounds of channel cats in about 18 hours of fishing. On this trip we averaged about 3 cats per hour while drifting the main lake in 14 to 17 feet of water. We caught the bigger cats while anchored overnight. We got 5 channels over 13 pounds with the two biggest weighing 21 & 24 pounds.

    Healthy male channel caught on mackerel. The shoulders on this fish were huge.
    [​IMG]

    My wifes new personal best. The shoulders on this fish were streamlined and it was likely a female.
    [​IMG]

    Another nice fish.
    [​IMG]

    One of the few big skinny cats I've seen out of Clear Lake. With a big fat belly I bet this fish would push 17 pounds easy. It topped out the digital scale at just over 13 pounds.
    [​IMG]

    It was strictly a catch and release trip as all fish were released to fight another day. It was an adventure we will not soon forget.

    I hope everyone enjoys the story and pictures & Happy New Year!
     
  2. neocats

    neocats New Member

    Messages:
    2,130
    State:
    Steubenvil
    welcome aboard and thanks for sharing your pics. Those are some nice looking fish. It's nice to see that I'm not the only one with a wife that loves catfishing.
     

  3. shania

    shania New Member

    Messages:
    5,942
    State:
    San Leandro, Ca
    I would like to :0a25: you to the B.O.C.

    I live in the San Francisco / Oakland Bay Area (San Leandro) and I love it! :smile2:
    Speaking of loving a place - Your going to Love this Web-site.

    I Belive that this is the Biggest & Best Fishing Web-site that you will find out there, with the Best Bunch of people that you will ever find on any fishing web-site!

    As far as the photos, all that I have to say is ":eek:oooh:"

    Thanks for sharing them!
    :0a31:

    Take it easy & "Happy New Year",
    Bert:cool2: & Shaina:0010:

    :worship: :0a23:
    Bert & Phil
     
  4. Bobwheelr

    Bobwheelr New Member

    Messages:
    104
    State:
    NC
    A warm welcome from a catfisherman in North Carolina. Those pictures are nice channels, I live in big blue cat country so i dont fish for channels but do catch one now and then. Like you, my wife is my best fishing partner, she holds a personal best of 74lb blue, it great to see the wife involved in our love of fishing, guess we are very lucky.
     
  5. jdstraka

    jdstraka Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,720
    State:
    Council Bluffs, Iowa
    Name:
    John
    Welcome to The BOC.Randy.You will meet a whole lot of folks that love Catfishing like you and your wife do,and can make some Lifelong Friends.Thanks for the pictures there great.J.D.:big_smile_2: :big_smile_2: :big_smile_2:
     
  6. plumbertom1

    plumbertom1 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,902
    State:
    Eugene, Or.
    Welcome to the BOC. I'm sure, like me , you'll find a wealth of informative posts and new friends to share your experiences with.
     
  7. pk_powell

    pk_powell New Member

    Messages:
    3,485
    State:
    Missouri
    Those are beautiful Channel Cats! I am from NW Missouri we have Channels Blue's and Flatheads in my state. Thank you for sharing such beautiful pics and reps to ya for joining the best and safest internet site on the web!IMHO:smile2:
     
  8. GMC FishHauler

    GMC FishHauler New Member

    Messages:
    1,335
    State:
    Waco, Texas, Un
    Those really are nice fish. IMO any channel over 20lbs is a true trophy!
     
  9. gilmafam

    gilmafam Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,466
    State:
    California
    Hi Randy.. Ive heard about the cats in CL. Been by Clear Lake two times on my way to fish salmon on the Rouge River at Gold Beach... I'm in S. Calif. at the beach in Redondo, and fish all local fresh, salt and the Sac Delta. Have great new year.

    bayrunner ray
     
  10. WHEELMOBILE07

    WHEELMOBILE07 New Member

    Messages:
    569
    State:
    Martinsville, Virginia
    Those are really big channels I would say. You are obviously doing something right. Ive only hung up to one channel that I would consider big and it weight in at 11lb. Those channels sure do look mighty tasty as well.

    Wheelmobile07
     
  11. Mickey

    Mickey New Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    14,592
    State:
    Illinois
    Randy welcome to the BOC. Thanks for sharing the pics of your fishing trip with us. Looks like you had fun. Look forward to your next pics.
     
  12. KnotGillty

    KnotGillty New Member

    Messages:
    401
    State:
    Northern Califo
    Thanks for the warm wishes everyone.:0a31:

    Thanks Wheelmobile07. I prefer to eat the more numerous smaller cats in the 3 - 5 pound range. Some know it as Selective Harvest. I think the smaller ones taste better too. For the big channels, in my boat, a couple of quick digital photos and the fish go back in the water. In my opinion, the larger channels have overcome big odds and likely have good genetics to pass on. Plus, the largest female channels are the biggest spawners. I hope I don't sound like I'm preaching here. Anyone who wants to keep a big fish has every right to do so. I have caught lots of nice forks (channels) in my day and I guess over the years they have earned my respect. To each their own I guess. When I finally get that Clear Lake record Channel I'll get lots of measurements for a replica mount and then try to keep it alive long enough to be weighed on a certified scale and if all works out right, released back into the lake.

    Clear Lake is unique in that 90+% of the lake is less than 30 feet deep. It was formed from an old volcanic eruption and still has geo thermal areas that bubble from the deep. It is ultra rich in plankton and baitfish which make all inhabited species grow fast, grow big, and grow fat. The Clear Lake channel cat derby in May '06 had 25 anglers who weighed in channel cats over 21 pounds. I hope to be in that group in '07.

    There are lots of methods to catch big channels. Bait is obviously important. So is presentation. Without getting too long winded, paying attention to the small details can make the difference between a skunk and a good day. Quality swivels, ultra sharp hooks, and line that is in good condition are always things one should pay attention to.

    May everyones 2007 be filled full of oversized fish.:0a23:
     
  13. DryHole

    DryHole New Member

    Messages:
    56
    State:
    Katy Texas
    :still_dreaming: Nice Cats Randy,
    My wifes fav lake is Clear Lake she spent her Summers there.

    Enjoyed the photos!
     
  14. bluehunter

    bluehunter New Member

    Messages:
    3,004
    State:
    Los Angele
    Welcome Randy to the BOC. Those are nice channels you have there. I was suppose to hit Clear lake last year for the derby but will eventually get around to it one day. Channels over the 20 pound mark is a trophy indeed and when they get in the 30's that is great. Just like yourself I share a passion for catfishing. And I also like you appreciate the great fishing that Cali has to offer in fresh and Salt. I would also like to add the great surface fishing for albacore, yellowtail, dorados, ETC.

    I mainly target blues but I also go after flatheads and channels. You have come into a great site with great members and the California section is bigger now than its ever been. Feel free to share insight and as well receive insight from others.
     
  15. splitshot

    splitshot New Member

    Messages:
    2,827
    State:
    Coxsakie,N.Y.
    Welcome to the BOC Randy!!! Thanks for the great pics. and story, hope to see you on here often.
     
  16. richard dunbar

    richard dunbar New Member

    Messages:
    550
    State:
    Washington
    I spent many a summer in clear lake. Fished every where from clear lake oaks down past nice, on the other side at the state park and soda bay to konocti. I love it there they have big blues there too. I think the next world record will be caught there. Great pictures, keep em comin
     
  17. KnotGillty

    KnotGillty New Member

    Messages:
    401
    State:
    Northern Califo
    My primary channel cats spots at Clear Lake stretch from Henderson Point down to cache creek. That's more than 10 miles of water. I primarily fish the south end as that is where I usually launch. I'd like to fish the Rattlesnake Island area more in '07.

    I have to disagree on the blues Richard. Big male channel cats many times turn a very dark color and people sometimes mistakenly id them as blue cats. One of the best ways to id a channel cat is to count the rays or lines on the anal fin (the fin below your right hand Richard in your avatar). Blues have 30 or more and channels have less than 30. Clear Lake in fact does not have any true blue cats. I wish it did have blues however as they would grow to enormous proportions with the abundent food supply. And yes, I too think Clear Lake has the right ingredients for world class fish.

    Tight lines
     
  18. luv 2 catch kats

    luv 2 catch kats New Member

    Messages:
    23
    State:
    ca
    Randy,

    Welcome to the B.O.C. I recently joined also and I truly believe this is the best site for catfishing info on the net. Those are some excellent photos of some quality cats bro!!!:big_smile:
     
  19. Pontoon

    Pontoon New Member

    Messages:
    180
    State:
    California
    Randy, congrats to you and your wife on the cats. I'm hoping for some of those myself real soon.
    Welcome to the B.O.C.
     
  20. daystarchis

    daystarchis New Member

    Messages:
    11,521
    State:
    Clovis Cali
    Randy and Kyle,
    Welcome to the Brotherhood. I look forward to reading your post and learning a lot. Nice pics knotgillty:wink: good looking cats!