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Catfish Tale
11-29-2017, 02:04 PM,
#1
Catfish Tale
Few days ago was casting my usual slow water 1/10 oz. 2/0 Hooksup head 3" Gulp! Minnow in the Sutherland Reservoir power plant cooling pond outlet canal for dinner, best available in the year round warm water drum or channel cat.  Here's an aerial view, I was on the south side lower part of the pic bout 200' up canal from the outlet gate structure, showing the local hot spot "Bubble" where the water enters the main reservoir thru 200' of underground conduit.
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Suther...01.1268239

Got a nice smallie rather quickly, then noticed a large dark colored fin and tail breaking surface mid channel and the cooling pond having a rep for big flatheads, figgered it might be one feeding on a floater.  Casting to it elicited no chase response, & it appeared the fish was floundering, unsuccessfully trying to swim down only to float back up. With the slow current drift towards the outlet suck gates, figgered the fish was doomed so decided to snag it. Got it on the first cast, and it put up no fight being dragged kinda sideways and tail first, until if hauled it tail first onto some shallow rocks.  Then it went wild, thrashing and repeatedly swimming back out after subsequent landing attempts till finally the hook detached from the adipose fin.  Made it back out to mid channel again drifting closer to the gates so I trotted after and kept casting for another snag but the shape of the jig head caused it to slide over the body point upright.  Finally, bout 40-50' from the gates got it again and it was a close call dragging it thru the funneling current into a slack seam up against the wall created by a small rock outcrop where rip rap bank abutted concrete.  Snagged on the anal fin this time, and repeated phase 1 trying to land it.  Finally, it quieted down and there was no way I could haul it up the riprap tail first so maneuvered for a head grab.  Nope, too toothy to lip so grabbing both gill plates lurched it up into a convenient depression in the riprap, cut the gills, stringered it, and immersed it in the water to bleed out. Geez, seemed like an hour before the red puffs ceased and I was able to drag it 200 yds up the riprap bank, up & over the gate structure and onto the "road" to my car.  Even bled out the fish was still kicking.

Guess it was worth it as the flattie estimated at least 35-40# fed 2 families, buddy Jon, and myself abundantly.  Cleaning it noticed what seemed like excessive internal abdominal fat which may have caused the fish to float, as it did appear otherwise healthy.  The meat tasted fine but the fat which I should have more assiduously trimmed off had a gamey taste.

Hope I don't have to do this again.
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11-30-2017, 11:17 AM,
#2
RE: Catfish Tale
Sounds like you had fun with your catfish adventure
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11-30-2017, 07:21 PM,
#3
RE: Catfish Tale
Great report! That's a big catfish!
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