View Full Version : The Beast Within . . .

08-03-2008, 07:40 AM
Like a dog needing a bone, my being was full of anticipation for this long awaited trip. *I hooked up with my neighbor Jeremy for this fishing adventure. *Before hitting the road we decided a little curbside welding work was in order for my trailer (thanks Jeremy).

We made the two hour drive to Clear Lake in search of the elusive channel cat. *We had visions of big fat ugly fish, fish that you wouldnít want to swim with, fish that I sometimes dream about. *In due time, we wouldnít be disappointed.

We launched the boat and I decided that a little Ďdriftingí was in order. *We baited up the poles, dropped 4 lines down, and began the drift. *4 minutes into the first drift Jeremy hooks into the first fish of the day and soon we have blood in the boat.

After a few more drifts and a couple missed opportunities, it was my turn for some rod torque action. *I turned to look at my rod in the holder, and the tip of the rod was straight down, all the way to the water! *What a beautiful sight. *I wish I could have gotten a picture of that bendo action. *I jumped out of my seat and struggled to get the rod out of the holder and the fight was on. *This was a beautiful fish and we were both stoked to get it in the boat.

On the next drift it was on for Jeremy as he hooked into this purty channel cat.

Next on the agenda was an on the water concert experience with the Scorpions and Sammy Hagar. *We anchored below the outdoor concert venue and decided that we should probably make dinner so we could get down to some serious fun. *Pasta with vegetables & shrimp, smothered in a garlic butter herb sauce.

The bands were great and we had a rockin' time. Hereís a fish that was part of a double header during the Scorpions concert.

Hereís Jeremy with a decent fish, caught while listening to Sammy Hagar belt out some good rock. He played some of his old Montrose stuff, some Van Halen stuff, and some of his Cabo Wabo stuff.

Catfish puncture wound. *You handle enough fish and once in a while you get stuck. *Thankfully, if you rub the wound, on the belly of the catfish, and get a snail trail all over your hand, it lessens the pain.

I was really happy to land this fish as I normally donít target bass at Clear Lake. *It was caught in 15 feet of water. *Itís been some time since I caught a nice largemouth. *I was thrilled. *

Now hereís where the story gets fun. *Iím laying on the floor of the boat, trying to get some shut eye, when one of my rods suddenly goes off. *I instantly know itís a big fish and I slowly fight it back to the boat. *My fishing partner wonít wake up and Iím stuck with this fish boatside, in the dark. *Itís like 4am and I can see this beast just under the surface with my headlamp. *I just stand there and lead him around for a while as I really want to make sure heís beat before I stick my hand in the water to pull him out. *I finally reach down and get my hand in his gill plate and start lifting. *He didnít like that and before I could even get the first two feet of his body out of the water he flexed, slipped off my hand, and made a mighty splash back in the water. *So here I am again, leading the fish around in circles with my rod as Iím trying to figure out my options. *I know two things for sure, Iím getting a picture of this fish & then Iím going to release it. *Since I canít wake up Jeremy to net the fish, I know there's no way of easily getting a picture. *I know there is no use in taking the fish out of the water, so I lean over the boat and do a close inspection of how well he is hooked. *My big circle hook is firmly stuck in the side of his mouth and I knew he wasnít going to come unbuttoned. *At that moment, the decision was made. . . . *I put the rod back in the rod holder, gave the fish enough line to be a couple of feet under the surface, and laid back down for some rest. *A picture was going to have to wait until daylight. *

Fast forward to 6:30am and Iím telling Jeremy about the challenges I had during the night. *ďDude, I busted off a fish that took off on one of your rods last night Jeremy, I couldnít wake you up man. *Also, I accidentally busted one of my poles in the dark last night when I leaned on it. *That just plain sux. *And oh yeah, Iíve got a big fish on that back rod over there. *Can you help me net it.Ē

Net job accomplished! The beast has been tamed. *

It was a male channel cat, an old pig of a fish, with lots of scars on its body. *The fish was amazingly thick and I just love the broad shoulders. *What an incredible fish. *After this pic we slowly slid him back into the water and wished him farewell. *Thank you for the good time Mr. Whiskers. *You are welcome in my boat any time you want to pay another visit. * *

We were off the water by 9am. *Water temps were in the upper 70 degree range. *

Tight Lines. *. *.

08-03-2008, 08:19 AM
WOW! I don't know what else to say, what a great trip, great pic's and story.

08-03-2008, 11:13 AM
wow nice cats! [smiley=excited.gif]
i've heard of giant cats at clear but never actually try to target for em out there yet, now im going to try to get em on!
i love those ugly sticks, only ugly sticks can catch ugly fish! and big ugly fish too! ;D
what a night, this made me looking foward heading to clear for a night ;)

08-03-2008, 11:58 AM
:oThis is one heck of a report! I gained so much from this report after reading it. I got a welding lesson, a First Aid lesson, a cooking demo, a history lesson on Rock n Roll and I learnsd a little more about catching monster catfish. Thanks, I'm a better man now...... 8-)WY

08-03-2008, 04:25 PM
So let me get this straight. You were at a bad-a$$ concert, eating some delicious looking grub, and catching fish? At the same time??? Talk about sensory overload. I loved your story ( I always love books with pictures) and getting to see some PIGS.

Tight Lines


08-03-2008, 07:28 PM
I've been following your posts for sometime, and I must say you are a very articulate writer, and you tell an awesome story. I look forward to your posts, and am envious of your mastery of the whiskerfish. Excellent pictures as well, I haven't figured out the whole resizing thing either, but thanks for taking and posting them nonetheless. Please keep the good posts coming.

08-03-2008, 09:22 PM
Be careful out there BigOne. *It's a big lake, the biggest in California, not counting Tahoe, and the winds come up almost every day & night. *If you're gonna be in a boat at night, be near one of the islands or the creek so that you can take shelter from the wind at a moments notice. *I have a friend who almost sank his $60,000 jet boat out there on his first overnight trip. *Had to call 911 to get rescued.

That's some funny stuff Wormyak. *

It was a good time for sure Prowler. *I've done these same trips with John Fogerty, Styx, Bostyn, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Def Leppard, Aerosmith, and many more. *I plan all my summer overnight catfish trips to the lake around concerts. *

Thanks for the kind words Mr. Sockeye. *I'm glad you enjoy the stories. *As far as the picture posting thing, I post all of my catfish reports on 6 different websites. *I create the report & host the pics on another board and then just copy and past the whole thing to the other fishing forums I frequent. *That way I don't have to manually post the pics to each website. *Anyway, the sniffer is the only one where the pics don't come out right. *I know how to resize the pics for the sniffer, and if it was the only board I posted on I'd do it right, but for sake of simplicity, I usually just leave the pics out of my stories on the sniffer that I know will be cropped. *Unfortunately, it results in less info & pics for my sniffer reports. *There are several more pics that I left out of this report (that I included on other sites). **Not a big deal I guess. *If I have a little more time this week I'll resize some and post them up. My girls need daddy right now. . .

Tight lines everyone


08-03-2008, 10:33 PM
I don't know why our screen is so narrow but here it the pic because it is a nice one!


08-04-2008, 06:31 PM
KG....awesome, awesome, awesome! Great stuff there!

08-04-2008, 08:04 PM
Talk about serious damage! Hagar and Cats. It doesn't get better than that dudes!!

08-04-2008, 11:10 PM
KG what did you use for bait? Great fish/pics thanks


08-05-2008, 05:31 AM
Very Cool Report K.G. 8-) Big Channel cats are awesome.

Looks like I might have to make a trip out there sometime! ;)