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January 14th, 2008   Calaveras  Don
January 28th, 2008   Calaveras  Don

February 29th, 2008   Choke Canyon   Don
March 21st, 2008  Choke Canyon  Don
April 5th, 2008 Cally Catmen Get-Together
April 16th, 2008 Calaveras  Don
July 9, 2009  Calaveras - Don
November 18th, 2008

January 14th, 2008
Calaveras Lake

Cool, cloudy day.
8:00A - 4:00P
Air Temp = 36 - 60F
H2O temp  62 - 74F
Wind N to E < 10

2nd boat one on the shallow ramp..only one other on the deep ramp.


Fished both sides of the lake.   Started on the east side near the inlet.  Worked  the turkey trees on both sides, shallow with bobbers and DK blood.  Caught one 3 pounder.  (I don't know how Cliff does it so successfullyl)

Went around the wall to the west side and worked along the riprap...nada.

Went under the swallow bridge to the left and anchored in 16 ft of water...68 degrees and went to the bottom, free-lining shrimp and DK blood and DK original.  Caught a bunch of dinks, including several blues.  Kept a few small ones and one more 2.5 pounder.


Long tired, but so happy to get out on the lake....



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January 28, 2008 
Calaveras Lake

Cool, wet, cloudy day.
10:00A - 4:00P
Air Temp = 56 - 78F
H2O temp  61 - 72F
Wind SE  < 13

Pump not running and not a bite in the cove.

Most fishing around the swallow bridge.  Caught two nice blues on chicken liver in 16 ft of water.

Caught 7 keepers, very few dinks on shrimp, DK blood and Chicken liver. 

Caught three under the turkeys on DK but they were scattered.

One of the floating docks on the deep water ramp came loosed and capsized.



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February 29th, 2008
Choke Canyon

Cool, wet, cloudy day.
7:00A - 4:00P
Air Temp = 59 - 83F
H2O temp 
Wind SE  10-20

I awaited all day Thursday for the wind to lie down..  I watched the wind forecasts for a week and they consistently said less than 10 mph on Friday.  It looked good when I started out at 6:00 A.M. for the hour long trip south on IH 37 to mile mark 83 and the Hwy 99 west to the river launch. 

When  I arrived, there was a light breeze, but not a problem.  There were about 20 other boaters already in the water.  One parking space left.  Got in line to launch and started out easily.

Lots of turkey birds....


The wind picked up about 10:00 and I had to fight to keep position.  broke loose at a bad time and had to retrieve two rods.  Saved  both reels but broke one rod...It's always something!

The lake is up and looks really good.  Some of the pictures are at my alligator hole on the west side of the hump across from Greyhound point.  Compare these pictures of now and then:


Lots of work and fun to catch 5 blues on Chicken liver;  three of them on jugs in 30 ft and 2 under the turkeys.   No dinks.


I thought I would stay out all day...maybe spend the night.  By 2:00, I was so tired of fighting the boat and wind, and the bite was not shallow where it was worthwhile.

I stopped by Braunig on the way back to clean the fish and took pictures of the new boat ramp with the next one in progress:

They remembered the cleats!

It does not look too low...

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March 21st, 2008
Choke Canyon

Beautiful day.
8:00A - 4:3000P
Air Temp = 40 -65F
H2O temp  66F 
Wind SE  5-10
Lake about 1-2 ft low

Put in at the Hwy 99 bridge.  No parking places left by 8A.  Calm day.  Went south past Greyhound point...across the lake.  Water a bit stained.  Found some 35 ft deep water and dropped a bunch of jugs with chicken liver.  Tried fishing RR for a while with punch bites.  After about an hour, picked up the jugs...had 4 keeper jumped off. 

You just gotta love this lake!!!

Hwy 99 bridge

An eagle fishing...

I continually saw dead gar floating all over the lake.  Must have seen 40 - 50.


Wind was picking up so I moved toward my Alligator Hump to the cove where I have caught a lot of fish.  Nothing shallow.   

Looked around at the egret roost on the hump.

I heard a reptile growling in here but never saw him.  I know this guy...he is big.

Low and behold, a flock of pink spoonbills  (Roseate spoonbills)

Went back out to 40 ft of water and dropped jugs again.  Caught another couple of blues .

Then went all the way to Calliham and fished shallow by one of the humps.  Using DK blood, I caught a couple of channels.


Lots of work and fun to catch 7 on chicken liver and DK;     No dinks.


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April 5th, 2008
3rd Calaveras Catmen Get-Together

This was probably the best of our three get-togethers. 

Congratulations to the Barnhills.  Marvin had the heaviest stringer (29.14) and his grandson Judson had the biggest cat (4.5).  The fish were smaller than previous years.  The total was about 105 pounds.  Just enough for a fish fry.

Thanks go to everyone and if I leave anyone out, please forgive me.

Marvin for bringing the bait samples.

Southernboy (Michael) for holding down the campsite, bringing his wonderful family and the spring rolls.

Keith (Kben) and Robert for cooking the blackened catfish.  It was a hit.

Joe (CatfishJoe) for bringing the potato salad and keeping the campsite safe while we were fishing.  Great new member of our tribe.  Thank you for your service.

Jess (Uncle Jess) for weighing in the fish.

Cliff, Eric and others who brought the cookers and large table.  I can always count on Eric.

Mark (Jugmaster) could not make it, but his sister Susan (SuzieQ) brought the plates, bowls, utensils, and table cloths even though she could not stay.

Mike, Missy and family for helping with the fixings.   Mark (MarkDLR), Tammy and kids for joining us and helping.

Kevin and Susan for making the last minute decision to come.  Susan was a big help with the table work.

Ken (Keeno) for donating the cooker and table.  I still have two of your shirts.  (call me)

Welcome to the clan, Monte.

And my wonderful first mate, the wormy, gorgeous filet breader, Linda. 

Send any more pictures to


Video Slideshow
of these photos with Catfish Blues by Johnny Lee Hooker


Our Bank Fishermen

Joe and his buffalo on Marv's

As usual, Cliff needs help carrying his fish

This cleaning station is very important.  It is here that most of us first met and became close friends.

Tim and Kevin

Carrie and Cliff on her first catfishing trip.

"You really don't expect me to touch those things, do you?"

Eric says, "Don't laugh, Jess.  It really is my biggest fish!"

Kevin and Susan moving in.

She tried to get away.

This is a great picture!!

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April 16, 2008
Calaveras Lake

Cool to warm, cloudy in the AM day.
10:00A - 3:00P
Air Temp = 68 - 82F
H2O temp  66 - 78F
Wind SE  15-30

Pump running and one bite in the cove.

Most fishing around the swallow bridge.  Caught small channels on shrimp and Marv's/Dk mixture


Caught 1 keeper shallow on Marv's.  Lots of dinks shallow on shrimp, DK and Marv's.

It is a disappointing fishing year...mostly small ones and very windy.


Lake is full and the grass on the edges should be alive with spawning cats...but there is no activity.  Plenty of shad slapping on the windblown shores, but good luck holding anchor.


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July 9, 2008
Calaveras Lake

Warm, cloudy in the AM day.
9:00A - 12:00P
Air Temp = 75 - 92F
H2O temp  87 - 93F
Wind SE  5-10

Fished the area around the highlines on the east side.  Used Marv's for the first two hours and they switched to freelinin' shrimp and caught 4 keepers in 1/2 - 2 ft of H2O,

Did not catch any dinks.  Pretty slow bite.

Lake is full and the grass on the edges should be alive with cats.  Plenty of shad slapping on the windblown shores.


Really cute Grandgirl helping Granddad by asking a lot of questions.....


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November 19, 2008
Calaveras Lake
Don & Mike

Warm, bright daylight.
8:30A - 3:00P
Air Temp = 45 - 78F
H2O temp  68 - 72F
Wind S  <  5

Fished shallow along the riprap for a couple of hours.  Few bites.  Then tied up to the wall and fished with Marv's 43 feet deep. 


Caught about 30 fish.  Kept 15. 

90% of them were blues.  Great to see so many young and developing blues.

Mike outfished me with one pole (I had 3 going).  He caught 2 for every one that I caught.

Lake is lower than I have ever seen it.  Deep water ramp is closed.  Bull rocks have been washed out by prop wash and the end of the ramp is too short to accommodate launching.


The shallow ramp has a rock/pebble bar built up from the prop wash.  All this is exasperated by the low lake level.

CPS is responding here:    Forum Thread

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