Skip to main content

Catfish Trio: 3 Southern Hotspots

While channel cats are widespread throughout the South, these three locations get top billing.

Catfish Trio: 3 Southern Hotspots








SANTEE COOPER LAKES

South Carolina

Contact: Kevin Davis (blackscamp.com)

Hot Spots: During hot weather, work the long, sandy points near deep water in lakes Moultrie and Marion, as well as mid-lake humps and along shallow ledges that fall into deep water. Hard-bottom areas of sand and gravel are best.

Try This: The seven-mile-long diversion canal connecting the two lakes is ground zero for some amazing channel catfish action during summer. The current in the canal attracts the forage and the catfish come to feast.


LAKE RICHARD B. RUSSELL

Georgia/South Carolina


Contact: Jerry Kotal (jerrykotalsfishingguideservice.com)

Hot Spots: Lake Russell is a large, deep lake with an abundance of points, humps and ledges. Local guide Jerry Kotal will fish a point or hump for about 15 minutes. If action is slow, he races to the next target.

Try This: Redworms, small chunks of shad and nightcrawlers are productive, but catalpa worms rule on Lake Russell. On one trip with Kotal, we baited eight rods with catalpa worms, cast them out and all eight were loaded up with channel cats within the first minute.

CHICKAMAUGA LAKE TAILWATERS

Tennessee


Contact: Richard Simms (sceniccityfishing.com)

Hot Spots: The Tennessee River immediately below the Chickamauga Dam, and continuing several miles downstream, is the best area for summertime cats. Drift the river current, especially areas with a rough bottom.

According to Capt. Richard Simms, certain areas will produce better from day to day depending on the water level, which varies based on Tennessee Valley Authority power generation releases. He catches most of his channel cats in 6 to 16 feet of water. If you find a hot section of river, drift it multiple times.


Try This: Capt. Simms loves fishing chicken breast for channel cats. Use the least amount of weight possible on light line (8- to 10-pound test) to free-drift in the current. Capt. Simms’ biggest complaint is that sometimes the channel cats bite too fast when he’s trying to target bigger blue cats.

More Catfish

Check out these popular G&F stories on catfish:

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Hobie MirageDrive 360 Kayak Propulsion: Amazing Control and Power

Hobie MirageDrive 360 Kayak Propulsion: Amazing Control and Power

The Hobie MirageDrive 360 pedal propulsion system is the pinnacle of kayak control with more efficient fin designs, glide technology and allows the boat to be moved in any direction.

New for 2021: Rage Broadhead, Nockturnal Nock, Carbon Express Arrows

New for 2021: Rage Broadhead, Nockturnal Nock, Carbon Express Arrows

New for 2021, here's a look at the new Rage Trypan NC, Nockturnal Shift Nock, Carbon Express Maxima RED Contour and D-Stroyer PileDRIVER arrows.

Catch More Bass on a Jerkbait in the Cooler Months

Catch More Bass on a Jerkbait in the Cooler Months

This one simple trick will trigger more bass strikes on a jerkbait during the fall months.

Understanding Reel Retrieve Ratios and How it Affects Lure Presentations

Understanding Reel Retrieve Ratios and How it Affects Lure Presentations

Increase a lure’s effectiveness by pairing it with the ideal reel speed.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Get ready to braise ground venison with all the traditional chili ingredients, directly on the grill, for a smokin' hot take on this comfort food classic.Smoked Venison Chili Recipe Wild Game

Smoked Venison Chili Recipe

Eva Shockey - October 16, 2020

Get ready to braise ground venison with all the traditional chili ingredients, directly on the...

With the Hobie MirageDrive 360 pedal propulsion system, anglers have ultimate kayak control with more efficient fin designs, glide technology and the ability to move their boat in any direction desiredAmazing Kayak Power and Control: Hobie's MirageDrive 360 Propulsion System Other Fishing

Amazing Kayak Power and Control: Hobie's MirageDrive 360 Propulsion System

OSG Editorial Staff - November 01, 2020

With the Hobie MirageDrive 360 pedal propulsion system, anglers have ultimate kayak control...

Bucks visit them regularly and so should you.Understand How to Use Scrapes to Locate Whitetails Whitetail

Understand How to Use Scrapes to Locate Whitetails

Tony Hansen - October 23, 2020

Bucks visit them regularly and so should you.

When it comes to fishing baits, you won't find a more unusual variety than the strange brews of smelly ingredients often used to catch catfish. How To Make Your Own Catfish Dough Bait Catfish

How To Make Your Own Catfish Dough Bait

Keith Sutton - August 04, 2015

When it comes to fishing baits, you won't find a more unusual variety than the strange brews...

See More Trending Articles

More Catfish

It's the first record blue certified over 100 pounds in the Peach State.Monster Blue Catfish Smashes Georgia Record Records

Monster Blue Catfish Smashes Georgia Record

Game & Fish Staff - October 20, 2020

It's the first record blue certified over 100 pounds in the Peach State.

Target riprap this summer for some of your best shots at channel catfish.Rock-and-Roll Fishing for Catfish Catfish

Rock-and-Roll Fishing for Catfish

Keith Sutton - July 14, 2020

Target riprap this summer for some of your best shots at channel catfish.

Anglers can find catfish in practically any freshwater system in the South, but some waters really stand out for monsters.The South's Best Waters for Trophy Catfish Catfish

The South's Best Waters for Trophy Catfish

John N. Felsher - August 21, 2020

Anglers can find catfish in practically any freshwater system in the South, but some waters...

Tie on a slip-bobber rig during late summer and load a cooler with suspended channel catfish.How to Catch Suspended Catfish in Late Summer with Proven Tactics Fishing How-To

How to Catch Suspended Catfish in Late Summer with Proven Tactics

M.D. Johnson

Tie on a slip-bobber rig during late summer and load a cooler with suspended channel catfish.

See More Catfish

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE Arrow

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Game & Fish App

Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now