February 1 1999
Well the good news is it can't get any slower since it has reached bottom. The only report I have is a few stray cats being caught in the Cache Creek area.
The problem is, unlike last year at this time, we need rain and lots of it both to stir up the food sources and to warm the water. I don't anticipate any major changes in the catfishing until we get that much needed rain.
As of 9:00AM today, the lake level is 4.72 feet above Rumsey. Good Fishin......Catfish Ed.
Clear Lake Catfish Report-February 5 1999
There has been a slight improvement in the catfishing, especially in the South end of the lake. If we get some heavy rain the fishing will improve even more.
Al Frietas of Don's Bait and Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) reports a 14 pound channel cat taken drifting a live minnow in the Jago Bay area. He says there have been quite a few catfishermen buying bait lately which is a good sign. Al advises drifting with a two-hook rig with a live minnow or nightcrawler on one and something smelly (mackerel, anchovy etc.)on the other.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait and Tackle in Clear Lake Oaks(707-998-1006) confirms the improved catfish bite. He reports two catfishermen caught 4 channel cats on nightcrawlers fishing near the Clear Lake Oaks Keys. Bob also says that there is still a lack of anglers trying for catfish which makes it hard to tell how the bite really is.
We have not been able to find a single catfisherman on the north end of the lake so therefore no report.......Good Luck.....Catfish Ed.
February 12 1999
Even though the water is rising and we did have a lot of muddy water runoff, the fishing is still rated as slow for channel cats. The only excuse that I can come up with is the water is still too cold. I hope that when the water warms a little, I won't have to come up with any more excuses.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait and Tackle in Clear Lake Oaks (707-998-1006) reports lots of brown bullheads (yellow cats) being caught all over the Clear Lake Keys area. The best bait for these tasty catfish has been mini-crawlers or garden worms. This fishing should continue for at least a week. Once these bullheads start up in the Keys area they tend to stick around. Bob says that unfortunately there have been no reports of channel cats being taken.
Al Frietas of Don's Bait and Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) reports very few catfishermen going out. He's had reports of a few channel cats being taken in or near Cache Creek on night crawlers but that's about it.
Ed Ott of Ed's Market in Nice (707-274-8029) has had a few reports of decent channel cats being taken in Rodman Slough. The slough is in prime condition for catfishing, muddy and just enough current to move the bait. There should be a lot of brown bullheads (yellow cats) biting in the slough but there are no reports yet.
Good Fishing.........Catfish Ed.
As of 10:00AM this morning the lake level is at 6.36 feet above Rumsey. That's over an 18 inch rise since last Friday
February 15 1999
The muddy water has improved the overall catfish picture considerably. The north end is producing lots of brown bullheads (yellow cats) and the south end is providing a mixed bag with a few nice channel catfish showing up.
Ed Ott of Ed's Market in Nice (707-274-8029) reports very good fishing in Rodman Slough. The majority of cats being taken are brown bullheads to 4 pounds and the favorite baits are mini crawlers and clams. Ed said one fellow came by his shop with over 30 nice fish that he caught last night.
Al Frietas of Don's Bait and Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) has had several reports of nice channel cats being caught in the Cache Creek area including an 18 pounder taken off shore in the Red Bud Park area and a 14 pounder by a belly-boat fisherman. Several smaller cats are coming out of Cache Creek itself.
The Clear Lake Keys are still producing large numbers of brown bullheads using mini crawlers, garden worms and clams. We are expecting another major rainstorm on Wednsday and this should improve the bite a little more.
Good Fishing......Catfish Ed.
As of 10:00AM this morning the lake level is at 6.45 feet above Rumsey.
February 19 1999
The catfishing remains decent for pan size fish and a few good channel cats are showing up in the south end of the lake.
Al Frietas of Don's Bait and Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) reports a few channel catfish being caught in cache creek and in the Redbud Park area. They opened the gates at the Cache Creek Dam which will improve the bite due to the current flow according to Al.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait and Tackle in Clear Lake Oaks (707-998-1006) received several reports of nice channel cats being taken in the Keys by some of his customers. He also reports lots of brown bullheads still on the prowl in the Keys. Most of the fish are biting either mini crawlers or nightcrawlers.
Ed Ott of Ed's Market in Nice(707-274-8029) says the brown bullheads are still munching on mini crawlers and clams in Rodman Slough and most other areas where muddy water is flowing into the lake.
Well that about covers it for this time, see you'all on Monday with a fresh report.......Good Fishing.......Catfish Ed
As of 10:00AM this morning the lake level is at 7.16 feet above Rumsey.
February 22 1999
The catfishing picture remains about the same.with a few brown bullheads being caught in Rodman Slough and most other muddy areas in the north end. A mix of channel cats and brown bullheads in the south end.
Al Frietas of Don's Bait and Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) reports an 18 pound channel cat taken by Chuck Olson near the mouth of Cache Creek on a live minnow. The few fishermen braving the elements are catching a few brown bullheads and an occasional channel cat while fishing in or near Cache Creek. The gates are open at the dam therefore the creek is moving and stirring up the catfish.
Not much else to report, hopefully better news is coming. Good Fishin......Catfish Ed.
As of 9:00AM this morning the lake level is at 7.35 feet above Rumsey.
February 26 1999
Catfishing remains fair in the south end of the lake but is rated poor elsewhere. The cold and wet weather is keeping the majority of catfishermen off the lake.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait and Tackle in Clearlake Oaks had no reports of catfish being taken in his area. Bob says there are very few anglers willing to take the cold weather.
Al Frietas of Don's Bait and Tackle in Clearlake has a little better news. Cache Creek is producing a few large channel cats up to 15 pounds using live minnows. Al says that one of his bait and tackle suppliers is catching a lot of catfish with live crawdads but will not reveal his secret spot.
The only other info I have is from the Wednsday Feb. 24 issue of the Lake County Record Bee: Two 21 pound channel catfish were caught at the mouth of Adobe Creek by Jose Luis Juarez of Kelseyville with garden worms earlier this week. Jose is a well known catfish expert here in Clear Lake.
We haven't talked to anyone that has had any success on cats this week in the north end of the lake. As I keep saying over and over, if we ever get a few consecutive days of warmer weather and the water temp gets over 50 degrees, we will see a great improvement in the fishing....Good Fishing.......Catfish Ed.