Kayaks and Catfish

Patrick Rogers-Ostema

Fort Collins CO

I caught this beautiful channel catfish while trolling an inline spinner. I was slowly trolling along about a mile an hour when all of a sudden my rod bent in half and my reel started screaming out line. I grabbed the rod out of the holder and within the second or two that had passed the fish had actually stopped my kayak dead in its tracks and started to pull it backwards. I was towing a good friend of mine behind me in another kayak. Naturally, the tow line and the fishing line had to make friends, but luckily with my buddies help and some frantic flailing we were able to untangle a bad situation. I'm pretty sure the catfish was laughing at us at this point. The fish went on for another 5 minutes or so. I was using 8lb test on what turned out to be a 16 lb catfish so I had the drag set pretty loose. Finally, the catfish began to tire and we got our first glimpse at what appeared to be a 4 foot submarine under the kayaks. It of course took one look at us and once again took my reel's drag for a test drive. A minute or two later after we repeated this dance a few times, my friend somehow managed to fit this giant into my not so giant net. He almost tipped his kayak over in the process, but that was just part of the fun. He then handed me the net and with both hands I pulled out the largest fish I've ever caught in my life. I was giddy like a school girl for about 10 minutes after that. We snapped a few pictures and made a short video and then put the behemoth back to fight another day. We weighed it at 16 lbs, but didn't actually get a length. I would guess it to be about 3 feet long, but then again, it felt like it was 10 feet long at the time. I know as far as channel cats go, 16 lbs isn't all that big, but at 29 years old it's the largest fish I've ever caught, and for that it's pretty special.

Species: Channel Catfish

Date Caught: 09/04/2012

Kept / Released: Released

Region of Catch: Region 3

Length: 34 inches

Weight: 16

Lure / Bait used: Lure | white and black 1/2 oz inline spinner

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