THIS REALLY HAPPENED TO US! PLEASE READ AND INPUT...

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by Flatheadhunter33, Sep 17, 2008.

  1. Flatheadhunter33

    Flatheadhunter33 New Member

    Messages:
    3,764
    State:
    Yuma, Arizona
    I have to tell you all this story about something that happened to my son my buddy Chris and I last Saturday night. It was a great night on the Colorado river for us. I posted in another thread that I got my PB flathead that night. I know that catfishers are naturally good liars but what I am going to tell you all is the absolute truth. Hopefully some of you might have some input to help us out...

    After fishing some back channels of the river and getting some cats, we decided to go out to the main channel where the water is wider and the current is a little faster. We anchored off a small island at the mouth of the main channel and entrance to a smaller one. We were fishing a hole that dropped from 10ft to 33ft at its deepest and about 100yds across. We had run out of live bait by that time as it was close to 4:00 am so we baited all 4 rods with chunks of blue gill and tossed them into the current and let them flow into the hole. After about 20 minutes of being there with no action, Chris gets a few nibbles on one of his rods that was set up on the side of the pontoon. Chris set the hook and all of a sudden his line starts screaming off the reel!! This fish had hit his bait from open water north of us and took off straight south. Chris tried to play the fish and work it back to the pontoon but this fish had other plans...it continued south into the big hole but toward a steep bank that was covered with snags. As Im hurrying to pull in all of our other lines, Chris yells at me to to put the anchors (3 cinder blocks attached to ropes) back down! I yell at him that I had not taken up any anchors! "Dont worry about it" he says while reeling in line, "it's coming back to us". Thats when I look up and see the island we were anchored on is now at least 30 yds away. This fish was pulling a 24ft pontoon with 3 cinder block anchors down, 2 men and a young boy with all sorts of gear!!!

    As we floated down river helplessly, Chris continued his struggle with this massive fish. At one point Chris tells me that he can feel the fish still on but it feels like he's also stuck on a stump or something. At that point we realize that the fish had managed to wrap itself around the back anchor line and to make matters worse it had also wrapped itself up in the snag along the bank! I rush to the back to try to figure how in the heck Im going to free up the line and not lose the fish in the process. As I start to pull in anchor line I get a soaking from river water as something huge splashes just below the surface! I look at Chris and tell him that even if we manage to free the line, he might have to help me heave this thing on board because I didnt think that my son would be able to help me! Almost as soon as I get soaked, Chris starts screaming "oh NO! NO NO!!!" After the fish had splashed, it took off further into the bank and broke off....

    We just stood there in silence for a long time not even knowing what to say...even the bugs from all the brush that we had gotten drug into didnt matter to us.

    Chris pulled a cold beer from the cooler and sat down in silence. My son kept asking what happened until I told him to shush. I felt bad for my friend. This fish was the fight of his life, all of our lives for that matter, and it had won. By this time, the sun was already up in full view over the mountains and the day had already started to heat up. We cleaned up the boat a little and took pics of my pb flathead while Chris came around a little and we tried to figure out everything we did wrong.

    First we figured that we should have picked up the anchors right away. That way the fish would not have gotten into the lines...but then I start to think that this fish knew exactly where it wanted to go. As soon as it took the bait, it bolted for that deep snag in the bank. This fish was smart! Pulling up the anchors would have allowed the fish to do what it wanted to that much faster. Looking in hind sight, we could have done alot of things different...we plan go back out this coming weekend. Today we discussed a plan for what to do if we get that fish again on a line but didnt come up with anything solid. Im interested to know what would you all do? Has this ever happened to anyone else here on the BOC?

    Chris, my son and I will remember that night for the rest of our lives...Im sure that if God blesses us to become old men, Chris my son and I will still keep looking for that fish...thanks for reading.
     
  2. neocats

    neocats New Member

    Messages:
    2,130
    State:
    Steubenvil
    Assuming you have adequate gear, and I do, there's not much I know to do when a true goliath happens to bite. If you can't physically man-handle the fish and turn him, all you can do is hang on and pray. I saw a tv show once where they started the boat and used the extra power to pull a big cat from the bottom, but that is useless if it's just pulling out drag already. Get a reel with a higher drag pressure and some really strong line.

    I also want to add that I have not ben blessed with that situation since I upgraded my tackle.
     

  3. hunted

    hunted New Member

    Messages:
    1,943
    State:
    washington court house,oh
    lol jeff,kinda like my luck.

    only thing you can really do is clench your butt cheeks and hope for the best :roll_eyes:
    you guys did about everything you could.if you can't turn a fish,he will get away one way or the other.the only way,like jeff said,is to upgrade your tackle to heavier gear.
    you never know,the fish might have been swimming past and got foul-hooked.that can make for an interesting day.also if he was headed with the current,well,that would explain some of the power that fish seemed to have
     
  4. BIG_D

    BIG_D New Member

    Messages:
    8,107
    State:
    Batchtown IL.
    awsome story brother and i still think congrats is in order eventhoe you guys dident get him you had one heck of a fight on your hands and yes thats a story you will always remember and be abl to tell from now on:wink:
     
  5. bnewsom71

    bnewsom71 New Member

    Messages:
    537
    State:
    Mathervill
    Wow! Great story! I am with everyone else on this one - Bigger Equipment? Not sure that you could do anything different. Nevertheless, I wish ya the best of luck gettin' after that biggun' again! I think that brute just made it personnal with 3 men!:wink:
     
  6. colten

    colten Member

    Messages:
    420
    State:
    Texas
    I have had this happen twice to me and each time I would be shaking after the fight. I know it was the adreniline rushing through my veins. It never gets any easier to loose a big fish.
     
  7. firechief4201

    firechief4201 New Member

    Messages:
    1,055
    State:
    Catlettsburg, Kentucky
    Can you get a crane on your boat. Man that was a good story and good luck this weekend.
     
  8. cat tamer

    cat tamer New Member

    Messages:
    694
    State:
    MO
    Sometimes it is not what you catch, sometimes its not knowing what you almost caught that will make a great memory. Great story !
     
  9. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    W-O-W, Dameon! I felt goosebumps when reading the story! That's one you won't EVER forget! Man, I've had a bunch of fish get the best of me through the years too. He musta been a monster! I've even had a couple get the best of me SINCE upgrading to 100# Power Pro line, getting fouled up in snags! I had a flattie hit so hard a couple of weeks ago, he pulled me loose from where I was tied up. I managed to land him after the boat spinning around in the river and fouling up all my lines. He was but a mere 27 pounds! I guess about the only thing you can do is what everyone suggested, and upgrade to heavier line, and stouter rods to muscle 'em out. The reel is important too, but I assume that as much as you fish, you have heavy reels. I use Abu Garcia exclusively, but the Penns are "industrial" quality too. All that being said, when those monsters take a notion to hit the snags, there's nothing much you can do other than pulling a 'Jimmyjonny' and swimming down the line to retrieve the fish! :wink: More reps to you when the machine will let me, for this great story!
    Bill in SC
     
  10. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    I've had something like that happen several times. Of course, in freshwater it was with much smaller fish. In saltwater, I once had a big grouper get into the rocks three times with me; the first two times I managed to get it out, but the last time, the line broke, probably from rubbing on the rocks. I was using 100# mono and matching rod & reel. It pulled like a much bigger fish than the 80# grouper I had landed less than an hour before. Of course, there's no way to know exactly what it was, but it fought like a grouper, so I figure it was a really big grouper of some type, possibly a jewfish (the current politically correct name is goliath grouper).
     
  11. catoon

    catoon Board Clown!

    Messages:
    1,387
    State:
    whiteville
    man that must have been a monster gar
     
  12. john catfish young

    john catfish young New Member

    Messages:
    3,070
    State:
    Kentucky
    Thats one heck of a story and one I'm sure that you will replay many times over in your mind. Just like many have mentioned already.....maybe when going after this one again....heavier gear and or line might be needed. I do all my fishing from the bank, so I never have to worry about anchor lines and usually there isn't much for a fish to get me tangled up in. But every once in a while, a true monster gives us a lesson in power. I wish you the best of luck in your pursuit of this beast!!!! Pull up the anchor lines.....tighten up the drag......get him turned before he gets you hung up.....keep the pressure on him ....and tell us about a new P.B. real soon......:big_smile:
     
  13. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Dameon,

    Great story! Every catfisherman will an experience like that during thier lifetime. Unfortunately, I have not experienced such thing.

    I would say your friend Chris hooked into one of those goliath westcoast flatheads. To pull a pontoon with 2 grown men and 3 cinderblocks takes a big, big fish. Don't wanna make you feel worse, but it could have been on of those 50, 60 or even 70lb ones.

    They don't get big for being stupid! A fish of that caliber is smart enough to find every snag to hier advantage.

    I'm sure those stories of big catfish with hooks and rigs in thier mouths are somewhat truthful.

    So now I hope you will always prepare yourself for a situation like this if it ever happens again. That story would have been 1,000 time sweeter seeing your son next to a flatheads as big as he is.

    Now you know, AND KNOWING IS HALF THE BATTLE! (G.I. Joe)
     
  14. crankbait77

    crankbait77 New Member

    Messages:
    356
    State:
    North Carolina
    Man I have had a few fish that actually drug both of my anchors and repositioned me to where they wanted me. I use two 25 pound river anchors and fish from a 17.5 foot nitro so there is quite a bit of friction that has to be overcome before the boat will move. A lot of people will claim that for gear I am over prepared for big fish, but as you are now doing, you can only try to prevent the next big one from getting off. I use 100 pound diawa saltiga braid, on heavy action boat rods, with Penn 330, and Penn 320 reels, and even with the heavy tackle this still happens. Were a lot of guys come home and talk about the one that got away, I will land a lot of large fish. On the flip side though I still have had a few to get the better of me, either with the help of heavy current or just being able to knit a blanket around a snag on the bottom it is still going to happen every once in a blue moon. All you can do is try and make it harder for the fish to do, and hope luck is on your side the next time. Hang in there brother, if you are on the water enough you will get another chance at a monster again. Hope this helps...
     
  15. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Great point cattoon!

    I saw Doug Stange on In-Fisherman get pulled around in a boat by a 7 footer.

    Both ways, would have been a helluva fish!
     
  16. catoon

    catoon Board Clown!

    Messages:
    1,387
    State:
    whiteville
    they get huge and they will come up off the bottom where they will have more pulling power a cat will dive for the bottom where there pulling down more on the boat than out on it
     
  17. whisker maniac

    whisker maniac New Member

    Messages:
    2,712
    State:
    arkansas
    Great story..

    Since the fish was controlling the situation the only thing you could have done was hang on and hope for the best.

    Everyone else is right tho. In that situation your gonna need heavier tackle to land him.
     
  18. Trevor1

    Trevor1 New Member

    Messages:
    546
    State:
    oklahoma
    How many of those cold beers had y'all drank before y'all hooked into that story?
    :smile2:
     
  19. Flatheadhunter33

    Flatheadhunter33 New Member

    Messages:
    3,764
    State:
    Yuma, Arizona
    That would be pretty cool. I would love to battle it out with one of those big beasts! Unfortunately, we dont have them in our water systems here though. At least not that we know of:confused2:...it had to be a giant flathead?
     
  20. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Do they have sturgeon in the Colorado River?

    Could that have been possible?

    How about gators?

    They can easily tow a weighted down pontoon.