November 3, 2000
The catfishing remains about the same as last week with most of the action in the south end of the lake.
Al Freitas of Don's Bait & Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) reports 3 to 5 fish per boat with the fish running from 8 to 15 pounds. The number one bait has been large and extra large live minnows with mackerel and clams catching their share as well. The top spots have been Bass Alley and Leubow Point.
There have been quite a few really large channel cats taken in the Clearlake Oaks arm around the mouth of the Keys. Leonard Geddes of Alameda caught and released a 24 pound 5 ounce and 12 pound 7 ouncer on Stubbs Island (M & M Campground) with doughballs flavored with Kick'N Catfish attractant. There was a 20 pound 5 ouncer taken with a jumbo minnow near the mouth of the New Keys. There are a few 1 ½ to 2 pound brown bullheads being caught in the Keys off docks with red worms.
It's the same old story in the north end of the lake, there are very few catfishermen on the lake. There are still a few cats in the 10 pound range being taken off docks with mackerel and clams. I'm sure there are some hungry cats off the Nice/Lucerne area in 15 to 20 feet of water but no one is trying for them.
November 10, 2000
Due to the cold and windy weather there haven't been many catfishermen out since last weekend. The south end of the lake is producing most of the fish especially in the Clearlake Oaks Arm.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait & Tackle in Clearlake Oaks (707-998-1006) reports some really big fish being taken at the mouth of the Keys including a 22 and 23 pounder both caught with live jumbo minnows. There have been quite a few nice fish taken drift fishing on the south side of Rattlesnake Island with minnows and mackerel. They are still catching some large cats in the 13 to 16 pound range at M & M Campground on the tip of the island with doughballs flavored with Kick'N Catfish attractant.
Al Freitas of Don's Bait & Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) says the catfishing is pretty slow in his area. They are taking an occasional catfish at Indian Beach and in Cache Creek with clams and mackerel. Al says most of the catfishermen in his area have been targeting crappie instead and catching 10 to 20 fish from 1 to 3 pounds with minnows at Kono Tayee.
I'm sorry to say that there is no catfishing activity in the north end of the lake except for an occasional fish being caught off docks with clams or mackerel.
November 17, 2000
Since the weather has remained unseasonably cold there haven't been a lot of catfishermen on the lake. Those that have braved the weather are doing quite well especially in the Clearlake Oaks arm.
Elden Riley manager of M & M Campground in Clearlake Oaks had an incredible day of catfishing last Sunday (November 12th). He and his brother caught 21 channel catfish weighing from 8 to a little over 20 pounds while drift fishing near the southwest side of Rattlesnake Island with jumbo minnows and frozen shad in 25 to 47 feet of water. I actually saw these fish while I was at the resort taking photos for their website, it was an awesome catch.
Al Freitas of Don's Bait & Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668) reports the few hardy souls enduring the cold weather have been averaging 2 or 3 nice cats per angler of around 8 to 15 pounds drifting jumbo minnows and mackerel at Bass Alley. Larry McCrea of Clearlake caught a 19 pound 12 ounce beauty on cut mackerel at Bass Alley.
The north end of the lake is still pretty slow. A friend of mine gave the drift fishing off the Nice/Lucerne area an honest effort earlier this week and drew a blank. The only action I'm aware of is an occasional big channel cat being caught off docks at night with nightcrawlers or mackerel.
November 23, 2000
This is going to be a fairly short report due to the holiday weekend, there have been very few fishermen on the lake.
The only report on catfish comes from Al Freitas of Don's Bait & Tackle in Clearlake (707-995-9668), he reports a few quality cats ranging from 10 to 15 pounds with an occasional 20 being taken drift fishing in 20 to 25 feet of water with live jumbo minnows and live waterdogs. The best areas have been White Rock, Jensen Point, Leubow Point and Jago Bay. Most boats are getting 3 or 4 fish per outing.
The hot bite at Rattlesnake Island in the Clearlake Oaks arm has completely dried up and there are no reports from the north end of the lake. A few inches of rain, preferably warm rain should wake up the catfish in the north end of the lake.