January 2, 2003
The nasty weather kept most catfishermen off the lake over the weekend but the improving weather during the week has brought out a few dedicated catfish anglers.
Fish Chris from TrophyBassOnly.com was out again on Tuesday and Wednesday. On Tuesday he fished with his buddy Ryan "Chabot Pro" and they caught and released 14 channel cats averaging over 12 lbs each including an 18.3 lb'er by Ryan and an 18 lb'er by Chris. They caught all their fish just outside of Konocti Harbor Marina using ultra light spinning gear baited with shad.
Chris returned to Konocti on Wednesday and fished by himself in the same area. He caught and released 14 channel cats weighing an average of over 13 lbs each including an 18.2 lb'er. This would be considered fantastic catfish action by most standards but it's actually fairly tame compared to some of Chris's catches last winter.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait & Tackle in Clearlake Oaks (707) 998-1006 says the catfishing is still very slow in the Oaks area. There are a few catfish being caught in the Clearlake Oaks Keys in the 8 to 10 lb range with nightcrawlers but it's a long wait between bites.
The north end of the lake is still producing a few decent cats but since the muddy runoff water has all but stopped, the fishing has slowed accordingly. The best area right now is in Rodman Slough which is still emptying muddy water into the lake. Gobs of nightcrawlers and or garden worms are the best baits for the slough.
January 9, 2003
It's beginning to look like the fantastic catfish action that we experienced during the winter of 2001/2002 near the Konocti Marina is not going to repeat itself this winter. Although a few anglers had some great catches, it just hasn't been very consistent.
Fish Chris from TrophyBassOnly.com was out again on Tuesday and Wednesday but even he had a tough time. On Tuesday he fished from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm and caught only one 15 lb catfish near Wheeler Point. On Wednesday (yesterday) he caught a 13, 15, 16.5 and a 17.2 lb'er at Wheeler Point and 10, 11 and 15 lb'ers at Konocti Marina. All fish were caught drift fishing with frozen shad and were released alive to be caught again.
There were a few catfishermen tyring their luck at Konocti last weekend but most were skunked or caught one or two fish at best.
I received a second hand report that there was some serious bird activity near Kono Tayee on Sunday and Monday and a lot of big catfish were caught in the area. I took a ride down there yesterday morning in my truck and did see a lot of feeding seagulls in the area so it's definitely worth checking out. I haven't heard of any catfishing activity in the north end of the lake other than the Kono Tayee report.
January 16, 2003
The catfish action appears to be almost non-existent but this is due mostly to the lack of fishing activity.
I only heard of one boat fishing in the Konocti Area in the last week and that was last Saturday, they caught one14.7 lb channel catfish with fresh shad and had no other bites.
The rain we had earlier this week improved the fishing in Rodman Slough, they're catching an occasional channel cat plus quite a few brown bullheads with gobs of mini-crawlers or garden worms.
I caught a 12 lb channel cat from my back deck last Friday evening with a frozen shad but I haven't had any more action since then.
Although I haven't heard of anyone trying it, Cache Creek should be very productive right now. The water is flowing through at a good pace since they have been letting water out of the dam for several weeks now. When the water is moving like that the catfishing is generally very good. Almost every year at this time I would get reports of excellent fishing in the creek from Don's Bait Shop in Clearlake but now that the shop is closed it's difficult to get any information from the Clearlake area.
January 23, 2003
Well folks, We tried every possible angle in order to get some catfish info for this report but it's so slow that very few catfish anglers are going out.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait & Tackle in Clearlake Oaks (707) 998-1006 says his neighbors tried for cats last Friday and Saturday and never even got a bite. Bob adds that he hasn't heard of anyone catching a catfish in the last week, not even an accidental one by bass fishermen.
In the north end of the lake they're still catching an occasional catfish in Rodman Slough but the wait between bites makes it hardly worth the effort.
we called a couple of resorts in Clearlake that are on or near Cache Creek to see if they heard of any catfish action but they hadn't even heard of anyone trying for cats.
The only thing we can add to this very negative catfish report is that they are so filled up on threadfin shad that they just aren't feeding. Hopefully they will get active again very soon.
January 30, 2003
We still can't seem to get much in the way of catfish reports. There just aren't that many fishermen targeting them and the few that do aren't giving up any information.
We did hear from two different sources that Rodman Slough is giving up some good catches. Dunking nightcrawlers and garden worms near the Rodman Slough Bridge is producing some good stringers of cats including a few 10 to 12 lb'ers. There have been a few boats anchoring near the mouth of the slough at night and catching 6 to 10 cats per person. Most of the fish are running 2 to 3 lbs with a few bigger ones to 16 lbs.
Bob Higgins of Limit Out Bait & Tackle in Clearlake Oaks (707) 998-1006 says he's selling a fair amount of catfish bait but no one is reporting back with their catches.
We're still hearing stories of big catfish catches near Kono Tayee, Henderson Point and Shag Rock fishing near feeding birds using shad as bait. Since they are just stories I don't consider them to be accurate but I have seen quite a bit of bird activity in those areas in the last week so it may be worth a try.