Monday, December 13, 2010

Too Cold to Fish? Not a Chance!

How cold is too cold to fish? Well, last Thursday it was awfully cold; 19 degrees when I woke up that morning. But I still went to Canal Lakes Fish Camp to meet Capt. Bill Saltzman for a day of catfishing. There was ice in the mud puddles and the wind made it seem even colder than it was, but we headed down the Diversion Canal and on into Lake Moultrie just the same. It was all worth it when a big 40-pound blue catfish hit my cut bait while drifting in 50+ feet of water near the dam.

Luckily for me, Capt. Bill has an enclosure on his pontoon boat that allowed us to get out of the wind in between baiting lines and reeling in fish, and I would not recommend going out with a guide who does not have that during a cold winter day. I mean, being cold is one thing, but not having that shelter to warm up in would have made the day downright  miserable. But as it was, we had a great day of conversation and caught some nice fish, including the 40-pounder.

Capt. Bill is a great guide to fish with. His pontoon is roomy and well equipped with gear, and he fishes with Abu Garcia 6500 reels matched with Shakespeare Ugly Stick Tiger rods, which are great combos for catfishing. He's also happy to share his fishing tips and does a great job making his guests feel welcome and entertained. And he's been fishing the Santee Cooper Lakes system long enough to know where the catfish are in every season of the year.

Don't let a little bit of cold weather scare you away from some of the greatest catfishing you'll find in the Palmetto State. Book a trip with Capt. Bill and catch yourself a trophy cat. Call him at 803-524-1951 or visit his website at

PhotosByBrianCope: Capt. Bill prepares some cut bait, then shows off the results of drifting one such bait along the depths of Lake Moultrie.

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