IFish Fishing Forum banner

1 - 20 of 43 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,387 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
While fishing for sturgeon last Saturday below the Horsetail Falls area, we hooked three channel cat in the 5 to 8 pound range. These were not brown bullhead but true channel cat. I have caught channel cat in the Big Willy and the Multomah Channel but never on the main stem Columbia itself. I never thought to try until now. I guess my question is how many times have you guys accidently hooked a channel cat while sturgeon fishing on the Columbia between the gorge and portland area?

Being an Alabama boy, this has an eyebrow raised for me. I guy would think the Bonny area should be full of them but if so, more incidental catches should happen. I plan on a night trip in the spring in the area targeting shallow water for these critters and would appreciate any input any one can give that has either targeted these guys or has ran across a cooler full by accident.

[ 11-15-2003, 06:02 PM: Message edited by: Tacklebuster ]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,418 Posts
TB, I know the John Day river is supposed to have plenty of them up above the John Day Dam. I have heard of people targeting and catching them around sauvies. Never any numbers in th ecolumbia that would have me targeting them. Give me a yell and I may bring my boat up and keep you company when you go for htem. I will throw out my crawfish pots and try and get some quality bait for them
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,716 Posts
I have caught several below St. Helens. They were around 5 lbs. Boy was I surprised. Darn good eating though. The way things are going with the sturgeon we may have to target these guys more often.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,418 Posts
SSSHHHHHHHHHH, Don't let the ODFW hear that they will have a special tag on them for extra $$$. The tribes will have to get their 99% of them, I wander which fin they will clip on them. What the slot limit would be. dates and such. :dance: :dance:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
370 Posts
I was also surprised when I caught one while Sturgeon fishing at Columbia City. This was in late August just before the run started. I've been fishing the area for about four years now and this was the first one I have seen. This one was 11#.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
627 Posts
I caught one at the mouth of the Willamette more in the Columbia 2 yrs ago along with a keeper Sturgeon.... :grin: :grin: :grin: ( also caught one in the Toyota hole earlier this year.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,195 Posts
had a friend that caught one below bonni on whole shad a few years ago.He said it wen't about 15 to 20 lbs.

R.R.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,533 Posts
We used to fish for channel cat's before we figured out what Sturgeon were. :bowdown:

Plus since sturgeon is closed for retention,
:mad:

you can keep cat fish. They eat just as well as Sturgeon. YUMM YUMM :dance:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
210 Posts
Not sure if you can legally fish them at night when they are the most active. I have caught boatloads of them in Oklahoma and they are fine eating…
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
121 Posts
I have a good friend who spends a week every summer catching a ton of these things at the mouth of the John Day. I have also caught a few in the Gilbert River, but they were all on accident. I saw a guy targeting them up in there one time and he had a bunch in the 5 to 10 pound range that he got out of the log jams. Good luck if you want to try and find 'em. Let us know how it goes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,792 Posts
I've never caught one but when I fished sturgeon at Bonniville dam,I did see two caught by a guy fishing for sturgeon.They weighed around 5#'s a piece.
Bob
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
635 Posts
Well, this is encouraging. I'd resigned myself to thinking catfish were few and far between here in Oregon based on everything I've read so far. Anyone else want to chime in an tell where you've caught these in numbers?

Snif snif snif. Lookin for clues. I sure love a good blackened catfish steak.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,702 Posts
Back in the old days you could fish for sturgeon all night,in Washington anyway. That was a lot of fun!! Spent many a night in a tent waiting for the bell to ring on our rod. It's really funny seeing 2 grown-ups trying to get out of a pup tent in a hurry when the bell goes off!! :laugh:

Dipnet :grin:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,375 Posts
Tacklebuster, them there cat critters ain't gonna do's ya any good come-a January. That thar is a Sturgeon Challenge, not cat fish challenge boy!!! Somt'm ta be a think'n 'bout sonny. :grin: :laugh:

So did ya keep 'em? They are good eating :cool: . And if your teeth are bad they are easy to gum'em up. :tongue:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
169 Posts
Well KY Hog Hunter is not the only Kentuckian on I fish, and I spent many years Cat Fishing. I believe we only have Channel Cats here in this area and in some parts of the country will get up to 30LB, the Fatheads get a lot bigger.

They feed just like Gator's and eat same things and love live bait. Here are two site have lot of info about them and fishing for them, BOC. has just about all the info one will ever find.

Anyone who wants to try chasing these guy's down let me know if you want company,they are good fighters and allot of fun. I know of a couple places I have wanted to fish for them but would take a boat and I am boat less.

Enjoy! Paul



http://www.brotherhood-of-catfishermen.com/

http://fishing.about.com/library/weekly/aa051997.htm
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Well, this would take me full circle. Started with night fishing for catfish about 50 years ago. Lip smacking gooood.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,387 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thanks for all the helpful replies :cool:

Eight years ago when I moved to Oregon, I wandered into a tackle shop on third street in Mac and talked to a guy named Michael Teague (SailCat) about channel cats. He told me I would need to drive to the Snake River to catch them in good numbers. A month later I walked back into the shop with two pictures of channel cat that I caught around the Newberg area. One was 25 pounds and the other 22 pounds. I know we have big fish in our local rivers and it took me a month to prove it.

I went on to fish for them for another year until I stumbled across sturgeon fishing and have been tied up ever since. Ever since last Saturday that is. I only fished around the Newberg area and in the year that I chased them, I did pretty well. I caught 5 over twenty pounds and 12 in the 12 to 16 pound range.

It makes since why more channel cats are not caught by accident when sturgeon fishing. The cats can not compete for food in the same area as a billion sturgeon. They are spread out and I think are a lot more shallower than one would think. Catfish do not have to have the bait on the bottom to bite either. We used to fish stink baits that would float above a barrel weight much like a "power bait" set up when fishing for trout. A favorite method of mine that accounted for just about all my channel cats in Oregon and most in Alabama was drifting a piece of cut bait under a float near fallen timber and log jams in 10 to 18 feet of water.

The problem with pitching a bait out into deep water on the Columbia is that it probably will never see a catfish due to the amount of sturgeon in the area. Floating bait down along the shallows however is another story. I do believe we have a sleeper of a fishery here folks. The biggest channel cats that I have caught down South has been in the middle of the winter doing this.

I am going to study some river charts and will plan a trip while the water temp is still in the 50's. Anyone else that wants to pioneer some uncharted fishing is more than welcome. I will be rigging my boat with 6 spot mounted spot lights and all the other equipment needed for a safe, comfortable night on the river. Will probably do the Multomah Channel for the virgin run. I hooked two by accident this spring while exploring new water for sturgeon.

Send me some mail if your interested....
 
1 - 20 of 43 Posts
Top